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Blog : Olympic Thinking

Blog

Olympic Thinking


By Phil Clarkson, learnpurple Associate

I have a secret... One which I believe many others may well have been guilty of. Now the Olympics are but a distant memory, I feel I can come clean, so here goes...

I really wasn’t interested in the Olympics or Paralympics during the build up. I thought it was a massively expensive exercise at a time when our country could ill afford it. I also anticipated we would become the laughing stock of the world as we failed to put on a show to be proud of.

How wrong could I have been?!

What I witnessed when peddling along with Sir Chris Hoy in my arm chair, when jumping off the sofa shouting “come on Mo” and even when (and I’m not afraid to admit it...) I cried for the first of many times during an award ceremony, was truly amazing.

Great Britain can honestly say not only did it deliver the best Olympics and Paralympics to date; it also lifted the country’s spirits when it was needed most.

Plus there are many lessons to be learned from the Summer period; with a strong legacy we should be proud of.

For me, the Games also supported my passion of achieving through positive thinking. It reminded me of the power of positive thinking and using it to positively influence people in my role as a facilitator and coach.

The four keys points to this are:

1.    If you think you can you will

Athletes at the Games, without a doubt, went into each tournament with a positive mindset. They will have visualised getting that gold, and thought “I really can win this so let’s perform like never before!”

The same should be done in any walk of life; facing every challenge as a positive. If you don’t, failure is almost always the outcome.

And remember you may not be in control of the situation however you are in control of your thoughts and therefore your reaction to the situation.

2.    Inspiring others

Upon winning their medals, many of the competitors were quoted as saying they were inspired by the performance of others and this helped drive them to success. So ask yourself “who inspires you?” and then “who do I inspire?” Once identified, understand the behaviours which you’re inspired by and then ensure that at the very least you are always demonstrating these to the individuals which you inspire.

3.    There's an Olympian in all of us

Not everyone can become an Olympian; just as not everyone can become a brain surgeon. However we do all have the ability to be brilliant at something – it just needs to be identified.

So rather than focus on what we can’t do; focus on what we can. The Paralympic athletes are a perfect example of this. They’ve overcome debilitating conditions in order to be the best in their class. Some have even pushed themselves further than deemed possible, take Oscar Pistorius for example – competing in both the Olympic and Paralympic games.

So whilst it’s good to strengthen weaknesses, sometimes it’s more productive to work out what you’re good at and focus on being great at this.

 4.    How can we all create a legacy?

The Olympics were more than a sporting event; they were created to inspire the next generation, refuelling our passion for Olympic sports. And so we must all take a personal responsibility to ensure the legacy lives on. Since the Olympics I have decided to help people believe in their own abilities succeed. I am also going to talk proudly about Great Britain when I travel abroad.

We all have the opportunity to do something great in response to the Games, so what will your “Since the Olympics, I have....” statements be?

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