Work to Finish Your Year Strong

Work to Finish Your Year Strong

“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” – Lou Holtz

No matter how you have performed so far this year, it is important to take a moment to examine your progress. For many, that means reflecting on both achievements and mistakes, and the decisions that caused those outcomes. Most importantly, do not lose sight of the fact that there is still time to accomplish great things. The March 24, 2017, Psychology Today article Finish Your Sports Season Mentally Strong, by psychologist and bestselling author Jim Taylor, offers advice to those who are happy with all aspects of their performance, and those who seek improvement, as this year’s “season” enters its final stretch. Selected excerpts follow:

If You’re Performing Well.

If you’re performing well, keep doing what you’re doing. You are in an ideal position for the rest of your season for several reasons. Because your season is already a success, the rest of the season is just icing on the cake for you… Just trust yourself and focus entirely on what you need to do to perform your best in every situation. If you keep doing what has worked so far, the chances are good that you will finish the season strong…

If You’re Performing ‘Meh’ or Worse…

There’s one thing you should definitely not do: panic! If you panic, some very bad things will happen. First, you will shift entirely into result mode, meaning you will focus on the results you need to get to salvage your season. This result focus will cause you to feel immense pressure every time you compete… As hard as it will be, you must let go of the pressure (‘Even if I have a lousy season, I will be okay.’) and maintain a process focus (‘What do I need to do to perform well?’). This point is the time to step back, take a long and hard look at your performances, and see if you can identify any changes that will help you get you back on track.”

Whether you’re a top performer or still learning the ropes, you can adjust as needed and finish the year strong. Remember your triumphs and how you achieved them, and continue doing what you did right. At the same time, make changes in areas that have caused you difficulties so that you can mitigate for your weaknesses. As many knows, the key to success is not focusing single-mindedly on results, but on properly executing the actions it takes to achieve great results. Keep victory in sight in the final stretch.

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