A 64-year-old man crosses the finish line at a national long distance running event and is asked by a reporter, "How does someone your age run a hundred miles?"
The happy but tired runner replies, "I don't run a hundred miles; I run one mile---a hundred times. If I focused on the entire distance the thought of such a task would be too difficult to handle properly."
This true story is an example of how to win the moment. Winning the Moment is a crucial component for you on the tennis court. Its impact leads squarely into the only moment that counts--this one!
The skill of present-time focus was once thought to be the domain of high level athletes, actors or musicians because it was understood that those people really needed to focus this way in order to perform well.
Don't you deserve to have this experience too? Of course you do!
Truth is, everyone does.
We can all benefit from it no matter what we're doing. My clients are both professional and non-professional athletes and the benefits are both glaring and obvious. Not only do they do everything at a higher level but they enjoy it more too. They experience:
- A sense of freedom and confidence
- Inner balance leading to confidence and clarity
- Uncluttered mind
- Emotional balance
- Increase in energy
Do you think these would help you play better tennis?
While the idea of Winning the Moment sounds great (and it is!), it is often difficult to actually do.
The biggest obstacle to this kind of focus is a "noisy" and unruly mind that keeps jumping out of the moment. The 64 year old man in the marathon focused on running one mile?one mile?as many times as necessary to get to the finish line.
A "noisy mind" is the enemy of winning the moment. The noise I refer to are the incessant junk thoughts that run rampant and drag the past forward or project into the future.
You know the noise. It sounds like this: "I can't beat this guy or girl" or "I hope I don't blow this point?I really need it" or "I can't get down against this player" or "I'm not playing well today and "I hope I don't mess this up." Of course, you could fill 50 sheets of paper with all the junk thoughts you could have, couldn't you? Winning the moment does not occur when the noise takes center stage.
Winning the moment is the result of three things:
- A quiet mind
- A focus on the present moment at hand?and nothing else
- A complete trust in the moment
Ah?and here is where the challenge comes into play. The mind wants to continue being noisy.
How many things are you thinking about right now?
Things other than the words you're reading?
Quiet your mind by finding something to focus on like the marathoner did and the more you do this the more trusting you are in the process.
This habit, done properly will not only strongly impact your tennis but will positively impact your life as well.
Win the moment first and 100 miles will turn into one mile a hundred times.
To your best tennis!
David Breslow is a former competitive player, teaching professional and Director of Mental Toughness at the USTA National Tennis Center and now works as a Peak Performance Specialist. Grab your FREE Mini-Course and bonus gift (an excerpt from his ebook): "7 Unforced Errors You Commit Before Hitting a Single Shot."