This is a true, if somewhat embarrassing story.
Years ago I was in Finland for the World Championship in my sport, ringette.
Two days before the final I wandered down to the restaurant where my teammates were.
To my shock and horror, they were trash talking me behind my back.
I was devastated to say the least.
In sports, you want your team to have your back.
Otherwise it’s tough to stay motivated.
When I saw one of my friends on the team she told me they were saying I was a selfish player.
For a moment I was tempted to throw in the towel.
To hang my head in shame, play meekly, and beg them to like me.
But that’s not mental toughness.
I stayed for hours talking to my friend.
I needed to get to the truth.
Either they were right about me, and I needed to be a better teammate.
Or they were wrong, and I needed to become more self-reliant and stop seeking their approval.
Instead of gettng defensive, I explored the criticism with questions.
“What is the difference, exactly, between the way I play vs. Diana?”
Finally, after a couple of hours, my friend looked me in the eye and said, “Nothing.”
“I think they are trying to tear you down a bit because you always score….and I’m so sorry. I know they are sorry too. Everybody likes you.”
48 hours later we won the World Ringette Championship.
I helped lead the charge.
That day I learned what it takes to become bullet-proof to criticism.
It’s a simple formula.
First, get to the heart of this person’s perception of you.
Is there any truth?
Never let anyone criticize you globally, such as, “You’re a jerk.”
Just ask, “How am I a jerk exactly?”
If you are being a jerk, you can certainly change.
I was not a perfect teammate.
In fact I set a goal to be more supportive and generous to everyone.
But sometimes gossip is like a diary…it’s just silly.
That’s when you can dismiss the criticism – if you’re prepared to think for yourself.
Approval is nice. It’s very nice.
But you don’t need it from anyone who is being petty or irrational.
Highly successful athletes and coaches share a common trait.
They tend to be immune, almost bullet-proof to criticism.
They can put themselves out there quite easily.
Rejection and the word ‘No’ doesn’t stop them.
What about you?
Are you holding yourself back from putting yourself out there?
Then let me ask you…
Who, exactly are you afraid of?
It’s time to take your power back.
Person after person in my Secrets of the Great Jock Mind Program is diving in and finding out how easy it is.
Remember, the program is completely guaranteed, and will help you realize your dreams today.
You have nothing to lose but fear.
Here’s where to go:
And for more free mental toughness tips, click here.
Lisa Brown is the founder of the Courage to Win and is considered the world's leading expert on deep mental toughness for success in career, love, and sport. She has personally coached over 7,200 achievers to new heights and conducted over 1,300 live seminars on mental toughness across North America. She has been featured by major media including the New York Times and Entrepreneur Magazine, who called the Courage to Win “a straight-forward guide to success, highly recommended.”