Anger is a powerful, underused tool for motivating yourself – and in this article, I will show you how to channel it into achieving victory.
Sometimes in big competitions, bad stuff goes down.
And no matter how hard you try to find the silver lining, there just ISN’T one.
When this happens, I suggest you stop trying to be positive and channel your anger instead.
It’s exactly how sprinter Michael Johnson qualified for the Olympics in the 200 M sprint event.
At the Olympic trials, Johnson was hit with a strong headwind during his semifinal heat.
A strong headwind can take a half second (or more) off your time.
Johnson didn’t win his heat and his time was slower than the sprinters in the first heat.
So other sprinters drew the best lanes for the final.
Michael drew lane 8.
Lane 8 means nothing to most people, but it’s the worst lane possible.
No Olympic Champion or World Champion has ever come from Lane 8 in a sprint.
In Lane 8 you have no room for strategy. You run the first half without even seeing your competitors.
Michael had never in his life run from a lane 8.
This isn’t even the worst part.
The other sprinters jumped up and down and pumped their fists when the drawings were announced.
Johnson’s rival, Carl Lewis, told the press he was ‘finished.‘
Johnson was filled with hate.
Because athletes who were supposed to be his friends were rejoicing in his misfortune.
But instead of letting his hate eat him alive, Johnson USED it.
In the warm up for the final, he said, ‘I let my eyes move from one to the next and, for a moment, I hated every one of them. I hated them for celebrating my misfortune, but mostly I just hated them because I was about to compete against them and they were doing everything they could to make sure I didn’t succeed. The gun went off and I launched out of the blocks in a fury. I ran away from them all and won the race with a time that stood as the best in the world for 4 years. That day I found a deep store of power and aggression and raw competitiveness and I’d ridden it to victory to find a joy and a thrill richer than I’d ever imagined.‘
Sometimes, bad stuff happens that will make you angry.
And rather than internalize it and make yourself depressed, you need to channel your frustration.
In fact that’s part of the beauty of sport.
It’s a chance to exert your force of will when the universe is counting you out.
It’s ok to be angry and frustrated.
Just channel it into a constructive goal.
Afterwards you can let go of your hate and forgive.
That’s what Johnson did.
He even celebrated with the other sprinters.
No one wants to be on the podium alone.
But sometimes you have to stand for yourself when no one else is.
Channelling hate, anger, and frustration is one of the skills is I want you to start practicing today.
The next time someone makes you angry in practice or competition, I want you to channel your anger into a constructive Right Focus. It’s an absolute MUST mental habit for you to develop as a consistent champion.
Try it at least once this week. You’ll be pleasantly surprised how motivating anger can be once you are channelling it correctly.
Light it up out there and I’ll talk to you again soon.
If you want to listen to the audio version of this article, click on the CD or link below:
Listen to Lisa Lane Brown, How To Use Anger To Motivate Yourself To Victory: He Made It Personal And Won The Olympic Trials