Focus > World-Class Habits for Teens: The Pre-Game Ritual

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Pre-game rituals are tools that help world-class performers to be calm and focused during situations that are important to them.

The great thing is: You don’t have to be an Olympic hopeful to use Rituals to help you do your best, especially when you are under pressure and the outcome matters.

Here are a few tips, so you can set up a ritual that helps you rise to the occasion:

1. Fuel Up.

Do you have a favorite pre-game snack or meal? If there is something that you eat and/or drink in the morning or before you compete that sits well with you and gives you good energy, try making that part of your ritual.

2. Look Sharp.

Do you have a favorite article of clothing? If so, having it ready to go before an important test or competition can help you to get ready to perform your best.

3. Get Focused.

Think about listening to music, journaling, or anything you can do to be calm and focused before an event. Be sure to set a positive intention...

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Focus > 2 Focus Hacks So Teens Can Crush It When It Matters

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Whether teens are getting ready for the upcoming ACT or if they have an important competitive event coming up, being able to Focus is important.

Many teens know this, but they don’t know how. For example, a sixteen-year-old equestrian practiced years to qualify for a national show jumping competition. She was at a distinct disadvantage because her horse was not as talented, nor as well trained as those of her competitors. Regardless, she eventually reached her dream and qualified to compete. Unfortunately she went off course in both of her classes and was disqualified. She felt as though her four years of hard work were erased in five minutes. What happened? “I was consumed by issues I had no control over, and I just lost focus on what was important,” she later reflected.

Here are a couple tips to help teens focus, especially when it matters:

1) Have a pre-game ritual.
It can be very simple, but needs to be consistent...

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Focus > Rule Your Morning. Rule Your Day.

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It’s nerve wracking to wake up with barely enough time to get out the door, and unfortunately it can set the stage for their entire day to be uncomfortable and unproductive.

There are a few habits to Rule Your Morning so teens can get their day off to a great start.

Of course, being able to Rule Your Morning involves ruling your bedtime. I know it’s sometimes nearly impossible to get a solid and needed 7-8 hours of sleep per night, but those late nights should be the exception and not the rule. If it’s happening night after night, it’s time to evaluate the where the night time is going and consider making some adjustments. We’ll talk more about the science behind the importance of sleep in the coming weeks.

When you get up:

1.)  Stretch.
Move around a little and do a few stretches, it will help you wake up and get ready for their day. World-class athletes always have a warm-up, and getting ready for...

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Emotional Control > What No One Tells Teens About the "F"-Word (... It's Not What You Think)

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I’m going to address the “F” word right away so I don’t get in trouble. The “F” word is “Fear.”

Emotions can propel us to greatness, or they can paralyze us, bringing creativity, productivity and motivation to a screeching halt. I sure prefer the later for moments that really matter and for long-term ambitions.

Let’s talk about the Emotional Wheel and “F”ear, as well as how your mindset may affect how you plan and how you perform under pressure.

The good news is that you can learn the tools to dream big, do small and crush it especially when it matters. Zone Performance is not just for the elite few, it’s for you too!

Green area means that you likely have a deep awareness and understanding of what emotions you experience, which ones serve you, which ones don’t as well as how to manage your emotions for optimal performance and optimal long-term thinking.

Yellow...

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Emotional Control > Leverage Mental Toughness to Rock Disruption

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We all face the threat of someone or something disrupting our status quo.

The mere thought of disruption can be paralyzing or it can be a secret weapon. It’s all in your mindset and what you choose to do with it.

Here’s one tip to "Leverage Mental Toughness to Rock Disruption" so you can get aggressive today about planning how to rise above the rest tomorrow: Keep this in mind, and you’ll be on your way to using a tool you already have in a way that most people don’t know about.

Here’s how: Use fear to drive progress.

In order to foster creativity, productivity and courage it’s important to use this emotion to your benefit rather than to your detriment. Fear can be paralyzing or it can be a super power. It depends on your mindset, how you perceive it.

Here’s how to take the first step:

1.) Recognize a potential threat and its consequences.

2.) Release that fear by accepting it, and then thinking of...

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Emotional Control > 1 Epic Formula to Manage Emotions When the Stakes Are High

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Being able to manage emotions is a tool that can come in handy during important events at work, at home or in competitive situations.

Since emotions drive behavior, this is an important skill to understand and master, so all your hard work can pay off. Once it’s game time, it is time to trust yourself. In other words, trust that your desired result will happen (even if you are not so sure!) 

World-class athletes perform their best when they are calm, carefree (of the outcome) and focused (on the most important thing to do their best). In other words, they trust and believe in themselves. Not being able to manage emotions is distracting, and the consequences can be significant and frustrating.

Keep this formula in mind, and you too will be able to champion your best results:

Emotional Control + Trust = Success.

Here’s how to get started with managing your emotions, especially when the stakes are high:

1.) Recognize when...

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How NOT to Set Dumb Goals

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In 1976, Steve Wozniak suggested to Hewlett Packard (his employer at the time) the idea of creating a personal computer. He was rejected, so he and his friend Steve Jobs got to work themselves on their dream of individual creativity for each user.

Martin Luther King had a dream that someday we would all be equal.

When Michael Phelps was 7 years old, he had a dream that there were no limits on what he could achieve.

Did these world-class performers meet all of the criteria of S.M.A.R.T. goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely)? No. They dreamt big and worked every day like that dream was possible, even through massive setbacks and failures.

Here are a couple of reasons why YOU should dream big too:

1.)  Broad to Narrow:

When you dream big, are more optimistic, and shoot for the stars. You are more aware of opportunities that present themselves. This broad awareness may lead you to be more confident and throw your hat...

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Smart Strategies to Get Better ... QUICKER!

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Do you, anyone you care about, or anyone you influence ever feel like the effort is there but the results are not?

Maybe there is something important, but going after it doesn’t happen because "I’m not smart enough, tall enough, senior enough, pretty enough, male enough, worthy enough"...etc.? It’s been proven in science that YOU ARE ENOUGH to make progress towards anything that’s important to you. You just need the proper tools and the willingness to put in the work.

Here’s a tool and a couple tips to get you started.

Download the FREE Deliberate Practice Worksheet:  Use this new worksheet when you want to accelerate your progress for something important to you. How much you practice matters, but even more important is HOW you practice.

The following tips are based on research done over the last three plus decades by Dr. Anders Ericsson, the research scientist and expert on the science of...

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3 World-Class Secrets to Train Your Brain

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It’s very common for us to judge ourselves based on other people's sizzle reels rather than what's real. We don't see the struggle, insecurities and messiness of others. Rest assured, it's there at any level whether an amateur athlete or Olympian, whether an intern or CEO, or whether a new mother or the household CEO of 4 teens.

So, how do we focus on progress not perfection to be world-class at what's most important to us?

Today we are going to focus on one thing you can do to get started: Practice saying Affirmations daily.

Consider that we become what we constantly tell ourselves. Evidence-based research shows that affirmations, actually change the brain on a cellular level—in other words, what you think about matters—a lot.

“Thoughts have a direct connection to your health.” says Dr. Joseph Dispenza, author of Physics, the Brain and Your Reality.

Here are a couple tips for you to use Affirmations to be...

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3 Secrets to Use Disruption as a Superpower (Mentally and Strategically)

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We all face the threat of someone or something disrupting our status quo. The mere thought of disruption can be paralyzing or it can be a secret weapon. With the proper mindset and tools, you (or your team) can take control to use disruption as a superpower.

I had the opportunity to catch up with Michael Alf of the Disciplined Disruption Podcast. Here are a few of Michael’s rules to be proactive surrounding disruption, so you can capitalize on an uncertain situation. In future episodes, I will talk about the mindset and planning required to execute these amazing tips:

  1. Developing the proper mindset is a vital component when it comes to planning for disruption. One of the biggest challenges as businesses, industries and roles are changing is: ‘How do I expand my tool belt to be as prepared as possible?’ The answer to this question starts with being confident in what’s possible and having the mindset to make...
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