3 Ways to Overcome Procrastination

If you are a student or a coach working with students, you would certainly recognize that being a student-athlete is hard work! They often have to fit in almost twice as much into their day compared to a typical student.

They need to train regularly, revise their school work, get enough sleep, eat healthily, and still leave room for family and social activities.

This is A LOT and is a big part of the reason why many suffer from exhaustion and quit the sport.

So what can student-athletes do to be at the top of their game, both academically and in sports?

If you reckon time management is the solution, you are only partly correct; all your efforts at time management would be put to waste if you do not first learn how to overcome procrastination. Specifically, you may know what to (and what not to) do but can’t seem to follow through with your thoughts and actions.   

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Asking the correct questions…

Imagine that you are trying to complete an assignment, learn a skill or to achieve a certain milestone.

The undertaking seems more difficult and requires more effort than you initially assumed.

As a result, you are somewhat frustrated and might be asking yourself one of these questions…

AB
“Why can’t I get this right?”
“Why do I have to do this?”
“What have I done wrong?”
“What can I do differently?”
“How can I break this down into simpler steps?”
“What can I learn from this?”

What’s the difference between these two groups of questions?

Would you feel and respond differently to questions from group A compared to group B?

What if you are a coach, what sort of questions would you ask your athlete?

Will they resemble questions from Group A – “Why can’t you get this right?” or Group B – “What can you do differently?”

Like most people, you would likely be more cognitive and solution-focused when you ask yourself questions from Group B.

Meanwhile, questions from Group A are likely to compound your frustration. You may even respond defensively when these questions are directed at you.

So what’s responsible for this difference in the way we feel and respond to these questions?

An understanding about how different regions of our brains respond to these questions will give us a better idea!

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Don’t Just Talk About It….

Model Mindset

Do we show our athletes how we face our own insecurities and push ourselves to have a go anyways, e.g., make use of new technology?

Do we recognize that we may not have all the answers and are willing to seek other experts, and even our young athletes for help?

Do we invest our time and effort in getting better and better (instead of feeling helpless) during this global pandemic?

Role Modelling is perhaps the most important strategy to help not only our athletes, but ourselves develop the Growth Mindset.

Coach Hansen