The Fastest Way To Improve Your Game
As we saw in the section on the Brain, the function of the brain is the mind.
We have one mind, but there are two parts to it, the conscious and the subconscious mind.
A common metaphor for making sense of the mind is that the conscious and subconscious parts of the mind are compared to an iceberg.
The conscious mind is the portion of the iceberg above the water. The subconscious part of the mind is the iceberg below the water level, where your thoughts, emotions and beliefs are stored. The conscious portion consists of about 10% of our thinking ability and the subconscious consists of about 90%.
Working with the Conscious and the Subconscious MInd
The subconscious mind is the foundation of your life, it is the home of every memory of every experience, real or imagined, that you have ever had. Amazingly, from pre-birth to today, as you read this.
Hypnotherapists have helped clients retrieve memories from pre-natal experiences, from experiences under anaesthesia during surgery, nothing is lost, only filed away. Open to retrieval when the subconscious is communicated with gently and wisely.
So what bearing does this have on your cricket, you may ask ?
All the ideas you have about yourself are stored in your subconscious mind.
Three Key Beliefs
We each have three key beliefs, and these shape our lives from day to day.
The First Belief
The first and most important belief we have is about ourselves, what we believe to be true about ourselves and what we believe we can achieve and do.This is shaped by our sense of Self Esteem.
The Second and Third Beliefs
The Second Belief is about what we believe to be true about other people. What we think and feel about them.
The Third Belief is about our world, is it a place of opportunity and abundance.
Or is it a place of fear, survival, lack and limit.
Each of these two is shaped by your first belief, about yourself.
Your self image and self esteem set the parameters for what you ‘believe’ is possible in your cricket. They set the scope of the goals that you can achieve.
If you don’t believe you amount to much and that you don’t have any personal power, your ability to make choices, then the scope of your goals is going to be limited and small.
If you lack confidence, focus, self esteem, calmness, the ability to manage your pre-match anxiety, you will underperform.
You will be less than you can be, far less, and you will be like this regularly.
There will be a constant sense of distrust in yourself and your abilities. Does it sound familiar?
This isn’t something that can be changed through ‘trying’ harder, this only makes your performance worse, it brings up the conscious mind and makes it more active, as it becomes more active it makes it more difficult to communicate with the subconscious.
The default settings of ‘trying harder’ and ‘analysis’ of the conscious mind paralyzes the gift of the subconscious mind, which is creative and automatic.
Your best cricket runs on automatic, when your hours of practicing can be expressed in your game without interference from the conscious mind. You have had these days, when your performance just flowed, when you are in the ‘Zone’.
‘Trying’ gets in the way of the automatic performance program that is stored in your brain.
Anxiety, nerves and stress are all manifestations of the same thing, they come from the same root … fear … fear of getting out, fear of bowling badly, fear of dropping a catch, fear of facing the same bowler who got you out last time.
Always lurking in the background, the FEAR of getting it wrong or getting hurt.
The How and What of the Subconscious Mind
The conscious mind operates on analytical, rational, logical thinking, two plus two is four. Our working memory and will power resides in the conscious mind.
Will power becomes ineffectual when faced with the power of the imagination … and fear gets magnified by the imagination.
Think of someone with a phobia, however hard they try they cannot ‘will’ their fear of heights, cats, dogs, spiders away.
It is the part of the mind that says, “I should stop smoking.” “I should lose weight.” “I should not be afraid of elevators.”
It isn’t rational, or logical, but neither is the subconscious.
‘Should’ doesn’t mean that they can !
Our subconscious mind wants to help us achieve our deepest desires, goals and expectations, even if they are contrary to logic and our own well being.
Once the subconscious mind accepts an idea, it goes to work on making it come true.
Your subconscious mind is like fertile soil which accepts any kind of seeds – good or bad. It doesn’t know the difference between a good goal or a bad goal, wherever you put your attention for any length of time it will go to work on making that a reality for you. The more vividly you imagine it, the more powerful it is. So, choose your goals and desires carefully.
The subconscious cannot tell the difference between a desire and a fear. If a fear comes to dominate your thinking, the subconscious will interpret that fear as a desire (goal) and work to make it your reality.
I don’t tell a person not to fear something or worry about something because that is like saying “Don’t think of a purple cow.”
As soon as I do that you can’t help but think of the ‘purple cow’.
The Power Of Choice
When you learn to communicate directly with the subconscious mind you can begin to control your mind, this leads to you choosing what you want to focus on and what you want to feed into your subconscious.
You begin to discover your personal power, the ability to choose your goals and to create your reality for the better.
The key language of the subconscious mind arever pictures and feelings. When we learn to choose verbal language that creates pictures and feelings of our positive goals our performance begins to move in the positive goal direction that we choose.
We use Goal Setting to choose our focus areas, and then we wire this into our brain through practice, lots of repetition, to move it from our working memory to our subconscious memory.
We supplement this with Visualization and Imagery, which we control, this allows us to reflect, edit and improve our performance. It continues the wiring process and strengthens the wiring.
Work with this, week by week you will begin to create the positive results that you desire in your game.