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"In short, mental preparedness is knowing what state of mind is required to achieve optimal performance"

This article will cover seven aspects of what the mind of a weightlifter should look like and why they are immensely important for optimal performance.

Mental preparedness

Mental preparedness is an extremely important aspect of performance. For weightlifting, specifically, the mental side of the things is, to some degree, of greater importance than the actual physical abilities to execute the lifts properly. In weightlifting the margins of error are so small, the tiniest of inaccuracies will be the difference between success or failure. In the moment when the next lift will determine what the future holds, in regards to a weightlifting career, being on top of your mental game is crucial.

So, what is mental preparedness?

In short, mental preparedness is knowing what state of mind is required to achieve optimal performance. Going into uncertainty increases the chance of failure, hence the reason why mental preparedness is key! Mental preparedness is all about strengthening self-belief and weakening self-doubt.

Now, there are numerous methods, techniques, and strategies of achieving a mental state in which significantly increase the chances of success through self-belief. And as crucial as mental preparedness is, before one can establish a proficient method, one has to be familiar with the effects mental preparedness can have on performance and what they are. So here are a couple that could be used to help with that.

1. Self-belief

If you were gonna look at the mind of a champion as a pyramid, the foundation and therefore the most important aspect of the pyramid, would be self-belief. Without it everything else will suffer. Whether in training, competition, or life in general, your mind will always be there, like a nagging ex-girlfriend it will be trying to tell you you're not good enough and that you should stop whatever you're doing. On top of actually being good at whatever task is in front of you, believing in your abilities to complete the task is closely linked to succeeding at that given task. On the other side of the coin of self-belief is obviously self-doubt. Just like those who believe in themselves increase the chances of success, those who doubt themselves increase the chances of failure. And since the rest of the world is, highly likely, doubting you already, why would you join their side and start doubting yourself? Exactly, f*ck the doubters and start believing in yourself. Anything you do should feed to your self-belief. Setting goals, finding your internal motivation, developing your mental toughness etc. Self-belief is the foundation that all else builds itself, so never neglect it.

2. Internal above external motivation

When pursuing weightlifting for the pure enjoyment of it, you are doing so because you are internally motivated. When one's motivation for engaging in a certain activity arise entirely from within, rather than out of a desire to gain some type of external reward, then one is internally motivated. That is not to say that external motivation isn't good because it certainly does have it's benefits, however, for external motivation to have the best effects one has to make sure that the external motivation comes from receiving the reward rather than avoiding punishment.

With that being said, you must have an idea of what internally motivates you. For many it's happiness, a healthy lifestyle, socialising etc. While for some it may be their dream to compete in the Olympics, to prove to themselves that hard work pays off etc. The takeaway message here is that you need to be doing it for the right reasons, for your benefit, and not for the benefit of others or temporary satisfaction. Find your WHY and you'll start to excel.