4 ways to help your athletes get better sleep when the stakes are high

Research shows athletes can improve their performance - in training and in competition - by getting extra sleep. Yet when the stakes are high at championship competitions, it can be harder and harder to fall asleep. 

Athletes can have stress and anxiety going into these competitions that make falling asleep a real challenge. If they are well rested and full of energy as coaches want them to be - ready to tap into peak performance - it can make falling asleep even harder. How do you deal with this dichotomy?

Here are 4 tips you can share with your athletes.

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How to quiet the mind

Do you ever notice anything about the inner voice in your head? Have you stopped to actually listen to all the chatter?

I've been paying attention to mine over the years and have noticed 4 trends:

  • My inner voice prefers to focus on the past or the future. She rarely lives in the present.
  • She focuses primarily on ME.
  • My inner voice can be super negative!
  • She repeats many of the same messages...over and over again.

What's wrong with this?

Focus on past or future: The past brings up guilt, blame, and resentment. The future brings about worry, fear, or anxiety.

Focus on self: When we're absorbed by the self we have a hard time listening, connecting, or caring about others.

Negative self talk: Living in a state of scarcity...I'm not _______ enough. (pretty, skinny, wealthy, tough, strong, good, smart, or whatever it is you'd like to fill the blank with).  

Repeated messages: Take the message that you just created from above and repeat it over and over and over again. The impact of the repetition is exponential.

How do you quiet the mind? 

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