I am often asked by managers, what the implications are of stress, anxiety and pressure on player's performance.
What research shows us, is that when someone is experiencing stress, they can't and don't perform at their best.
What we see is that when we resolve the issues, the individual starts scoring more goals, taking more wickets, scoring more tries or consistently setting better lap times – that’s the simple answer.
As a Psychotherapist, who specialises in extreme pressure environments, I often work with individuals who are under immense pressure, and if they aren't getting the right psychological support, it really can impact their performance.
I work with clients across every aspect of their mental game. This style of working isn’t about giving advice or telling you how to do things differently – this is about creating the ultimate mindset, utilising a unique combination of Neuropsychology and Neuroplasticity, the brain's natural ability to change to achieve it.
Much research has been devoted to understanding how psychological state affects sport performance in competitive settings.
Just click here to head over to our dedicated sport site and find out exactly how you can elevate your performance and win the title you dream of.
Elevating your performance
Many high-achieving sports professionals already employ coaches and personal trainers to support their mental game.
In general a sports Psychologist will usually work with you using a number of techniques including visualisation, NLP, CBT and other different techniques.
Sarah however works with unique combination of neuropsychology and neuroplasticity that achieves peak brain performance.
This happens by creating new neural pathways that allow her client to respond differently to any given situation, in particular high pressure environments.
This regulates their emotions, which in turn optimises brain function to operate more effectively.
Sarah works closely with each client to ensure she understands their objectives and priorities.
Whether the desired outcome is to build confidence, remove ‘Imposter Syndrome’ or limiting self beliefs and values, create more self-belief, dissolve anxiety, improve focus and concentration or create the ability to control emotions in the key matches or 'big moments'.
At every point the results can be felt instantly. Tangible differences are immediately obvious for the client and continue to show through into daily lives.
Previous clients testify to the impact not only on their performance, but also on their personal life.
If you are nervous, distracted, over-whelmed, over-thinking your game, unable to recover from mistakes, trying too hard or just lacking in confidence this gets you in the best mental state to get your personal best when it matters the most.
Anxiety In Sport
When things aren’t going your way, you can start to really feel the pressure, and maybe begin to experience a crisis in confidence. Once this happens it can be a slippery slope. The fear and anxiety increases, and this can have a huge impact on your game, and then unfortunately with the way the brain works, it becomes a vicious cycle.
In professional sport, the pressure is immense – and this is often not appreciated by others.
The pressure comes from both external and internal influences. External pressure, such as from the manger, other team members, your family, the fans. And internal pressure, which is often more significant, from you yourself.
And If you are a perfectionist, it can be absolute torture.
So how do you fix it – this is where I come in.
You will no doubt, already have a Performance Coach, who will work with you on some of these areas, but that will only be at a conscious level. So maybe just talking about how you feel. They may utilise techniques to help manage the pressure and the feelings – but obviously that is just ‘managing’ it - it won’t stop them actually happening.
'Fear' of losing, 'Fear' of looking stupid, 'Fear' that you aren't as good as you believe you are, ‘Fear of getting dropped’, ‘ Fear of messing up’, ‘Fear of failing’, so 'Fear' of letting people down - the common theme here is obvious.
Essentially everything negative in sport is driven by fear. If you don’t deal with it, it will lead to anxiety, and anxiety can spread to all areas of your life – it can start to take over, and cause real problems.
So this is where I come in. We work together and stop the anxiety and other issues in their tracks.
We work with the brain processes - and that is a really important distinction here, in that we are working with the brain, not the mind. It is all based on neuroscience, but it is actually quite simple to achieve when you know how.
If you want to find out more about how you can elevate your individual performance or your team's performance, please do get in touch using the contact button or page.
You can also click here to head over to our dedicated site for professional sport.