Sunday, May 10, 2009

Continuous effort ........

Regardless of one’s ability and belief in oneself, it takes a whole lot of effort and persistence to achieve anything substantial. You don’t become a champion by just wishing for it or believing you can.

I like this quote from Winston Churchill.

“Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential"

If I had did not already have a job I enjoy, I would like a job involving bridge. Playing would be top of the list for sure, but training and coaching would be high on the list as well. Coaching the Australian into winning skills, that would be cool. As long as I get to travel with the team of course.

So now, moving on to look at the aspect of improving these mental skills.

It goes goes without saying (but I will say it anyway !!) that a prerequisite is to develop one’s technical skills. Regardless how well strong our mental skills may be, mental fatigue will always be there to trigger mistakes - lack of concentration - incorrect focus - increased likelihood to respond with stress to tough situations - etc. So it is important that the technical play aspects be both well understood and well practiced to minimise fatigue, so as to "automate" the card play itself. This will minimise the internal focus required to search our mental stores for knowledge that is buried, and free our mind to attend to relevant cues and solve relevant problems.

Jahangir Khan who was at the top of the squash world for so long said:

"To be the best, I had to work harder than everyone else."

A key step to improvement is of course to make an honest assessment of our strengths and weaknesses. I will skip that step for now but more on this later.

Next post will cover:
· Techniques for improving focus styles and concentration
· Training practice for these 2 skills
· At the table

1 comment:

  1. What you have siad about practicing technical skills could not be more important, especially in practicing a sport such as Basketball or Soccer, or even Golf. The reason Tiger Woods is so great is because He works harder than anyone else. I have enjoyed reading your blogs about focus and concentration and practice. You can apply them in sports, card games, and even on the job performance.
    Ken Gustafson