Monday, August 22, 2016

Becoming A Gold Medal Keyboard Athlete by Tessa Shapcott

Have you been watching the Rio Olympics? There is a debate here in the UK about what has been helping the British and American teams top the medal tally.  The Department of Sport and Performance Psychology at Loughborough University has made a list of the behaviours needed to become a winner, and it made me think about how you can apply them to writing. Here are my three favourites.

The psychologists say ignore the competition.  I think that’s a good one.  Comparing yourself to others is demoralising and futile.  Far better to just concentrate on your writing and seek out industry professionals who will give objective reviews of your strengths and weaknesses.

Get in your bubble.  This means focusing on what needs to be done and shutting out irrelevant tasks.  I work as an editor and the most successful authors I know do this incredibly well.  They are tough about ring-fencing their time, delegating when they need to and being a wee bit selfish about their writing because it always comes first.

Stick to your plan.  This sounds quite rigid, but actually requires a combination of knowing your goal and not wavering from it, but being able to be flexible if you encounter a fork in the road.  The journey may not be straightforward but you get to your destination in the end.

The takeaway is: grit, determination, resilience and desire are what separate winners from losers!

No comments: