How should I feel at peak performance?
In short, you should be relaxed yet energized. Your best state for performance is being slightly above your normal level of stimulation. You shouldn’t feel like you just had a double espresso, but you also shouldn’t feel like you just ate a Thanksgiving feast. Don’t mistake the stimulants of energy drinks with your natural own high. You definitely don’t want to be bouncing off the walls and jittery. Think calm, cool, collect with the ability to turn up the heat!
How can I achieve my optimal state?
It takes confidence, focus, control, and enjoyment.
When you are confident, you have positive thoughts of success. You know you are going to succeed. There is expectation. You aren’t scared or nervous. Being a little nervous won’t hurt you, but it shouldn’t be your affecting your psyche negatively. Confidence is within yourself, in your teammates, in your coach, in the gameplan. You trust your preparation and you trust yourself. Your instincts are true and your intuition is on point.
Focus cannot be forced. You have to be it and feel it. It might help if you try hard to be in it, but in the end, it has to be true. You have to be in the now. You are present in the moment with all distractions out of your mind. You could be in a stadium of 100,000 people and you wouldn’t be bothered by it. Having complete focus sends your energy in the right places.
You are in control. What you want to happen does happen. Everything you do is what you want. It almost comes at ease. Every touch, pass, movement is effortless. You don’t want be a robot, but you also don’t want your thoughts or emotions to affect you. It is almost like you are on autopilot.
You cannot perform at your best if you are not enjoying the moment. You can be withdrawn, bored, or uneasy. When you are having fun, you play your best games. You are in the moment enjoying and taking it in.
These four things contribute to your state of peak performance. Next time you play a game or practice check in with yourself and how you are doing in these departments. If one is lacking, how can you elevate that component? What can you do to feel more confident or why do you lack in confidence? Why aren’t you having fun? Why can’t you focus? What makes you feel like you aren’t in control? By dissecting these issues, you can figure out how to be at your state of peak performance.