Monday, 23 November 2009

Negative Self- talk

In his recent blog post Dave Shearon tackles the issue of dealing with negative emotions within Postive Psychology head on. One way to do this, he suggests, is by 'learning to contest and re-direct negative self-talk'. As someone who has struggled with this art I thought, 'easier said than done' - that is until I came across the work of Julie Ness Bell on Performance Intelligence at Work. In this easy to read text she outlines the The 5 Essentials to Achieving The Mind of a Champion, and offers this practical model - 'Recognise, Re-focus, Routine' as process for applying our attention to the elements of performance that are more likely to help us achieve a positive outcome. She says:

...especially in today's tough economic times, many corporate leaders are stalled by fears of failure. This approach robs us of any chance at greatness, but this three-step method (R3) overcomes this challenge by creating new habits in the brain. Recognising self-talk, learning to refocus attention on different aspects of a situation, and establishing new thought routines ensures that those debilitating tapes will stop being replayed in your head.

A quick scan through related work on the web reveals an large amount of papers and texts from the world of Sports Psychology that offer similar models and ways of 'thinking'. I wonder whether Positive Psychology pays enough attention to the world of sport as it searches for new ways to bring its theories to life?

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