You can save yourself a lot of time, even a lifetime of effort, by adopting a simple strategy for learning.
Many people think they really need to understand issues before they can use them. This can be useful, but it can also hold you back in certain circumstances.
For example, a coach or instructor might suggest a new tactic, or technique or coordination. If you assume that you already know what they have to offer, or insist on understanding the process thoroughly, you’re misleading yourself and obstructing your own progress. You would have to put in years of study to match his or her understanding.
Sometimes people find that the penny does indeed drop, some years down the line. Don’t let that happen to you. Why not, just try the suggestion wholeheartedly, as if you fully believe in it, so you can feel what happens, right there and then?
The new physical experience may well give you a new insight, which will change everything. But only if you set aside any reservations you may have.
You’ll be surprised how many skiers drag their heels and lose out on this direct opportunity for success.
There’s an old phrase “ You can’t see the view till you’ve climbed the mountain.” Which means that
perhaps you won’t understand something until you can do it.
The lesson here is to give yourself the chance of a new physical experience in your performance, by applying the advice you receive.
Even if don’t yet fully understand why, your body may be able to achieve results that your mind isn’t ready for.
This is the big physical short cut to success:
Golden opportunity 6: Trust the advice and behave as though you believe.
There’s another issue to consider while we’re on the subject of overcoming obstacles to learning.
It’s related to the issue discussed in the previous paragraph and in the previous article, but deserves special consideration because it is at the root of a great deal of self defeating behaviour.
It also needs special consideration because it will be very upset if it feels slighted.
We’re talking about your ego.
This is not the place for a deep discussion of psychology, but there’s a really important advantage to be discovered here.
Your ego thinks that it’s you, and even if it’s not, it insists that it’s in charge. Which is the problem.
Which part of you is the source of the denial based behaviour discussed in the previous article?
Which part of you insists on understanding, insists on more details, insists on more feedback?
Which part of you insists on trying to control your body, even though it’s not wired in?
While your ego is a very valuable part of who you are, and it’s role is critical to how you live your life, your learning will go more smoothly when it learns to become a better team player.
The team here is the whole you, different aspects of which have been referred to as mind, body and spirit.
Your ego is part of your mind, but not all of it; and perhaps a part of your spirit, too, but not all of it.
It can really work for you when it understands its’ place in the greater whole and lets go of its’ tyrannical grip.
Golden opportunities 5 and 6 are related to addressing this issue.
Golden opportunity 7: Learn how to get out of your own way.
Your performance development depends upon it.
That's enough for this article!
We’ll continue with this theme over the next few editions of this newsletter.