Category: Psychology

Exploring the potential of the human mind and body

What is Resilience, and How Do I Bounce Back?

The ABCDE of managing life’s challenges “Resilience is our ability to bounce back from life’s challenges and unforeseen difficulties, providing mental protection from emotional and mental disorders,” says Professor Michael Rutter, often described as the father of child psychology. A resilient person is less vulnerable to stressful events, has an internal drive, and can think…
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How to Build an Expert Mindset Using Deliberate Practice

What science tells us about expertise Psychologists, cognitive scientists, and AI researchers have for decades grappled with answering: what does it mean to be an expert, and how does someone become one? To theorize about human ability, science must consider whether expertise is acquired as a result of nature or nurture. Are you born with the capacity to be…
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What Is Mental Toughness, and Where Can I Get Some?

When someone is described as being “mentally tough,” it typically signals that they’re resilient, self-assured, and bold. Ask any athlete what the concept means in sports, and they will answer, “you thrive in competition,” “you’re self-confident,” and “you can handle the pressure.”But all these statements describe behavior, rather than what’s going on inside one’s head.…
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Mental Toughness Provides the Athlete With Both a Natural and a Developed Edge

But do we really understand what mental toughness is? A better understanding of the psychological factors that elevate sporting performance will lead to improved evidence-based, practical, psychological intervention for athletes. During competition, an athletes’ behavioural responses rely on various psychological factors, including mental toughness, and its role is pivotal in supporting adaptive responses to pressure.…
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There is No Magic 10,000 Hours Rule

The popular account of deliberate practice is wrong No one, no matter how gifted, is born an expert in chess, or with the ability to play the violin. And no one, no matter how much they practice, can be an expert in everything. It is widely accepted that the path to becoming an expert is a long…
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You Don’t Have to Be Mentally Tough to Be an Ultra-Marathoner, but It Does Help

Or, why we all have the psychology to run very long distances It all started with a very long run…. The Mourne Mountains sit between Belfast and Dublin, nestled beside the Irish sea. They are a wild, and beautiful range, with hidden loughs, nearby forests, and trails throughout. It is a dream for any mountain trail…
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Adventurers and athletes have always pushed the limits, but how do we adapt and what does it mean?

Sport and adventure in the extremes requires an optimised psychology “I can’t do another 15/16 hours.” I think having a little cry probably helped. I got back out of the van more focused, determined and positive.” – Nicky Spinks Adventurers and athletes have always pushed the limits, but how do we adapt and what does it…
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Own the Challenge, Own Your Performance

Tools used in high-performance sports that deliver success in life Much of our life is found in challenging environments. All of us will find, at times, that we are losing control, or perspective, whether in work, education, or even relationships. There are however some key mental strategies, underpinned by hard science, that can be implemented to…
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Can our personality impact sporting success?

Personality is a collection of psychological qualities that contribute to an individual’s lasting way of behaving, thinking, and feeling, and according to research, impacts the behaviour of competitive athletes. An improved understanding of personality traits may assist athletes to achieve their optimum performance. Breaking down personality Analysis of human language has identifed five basic personality…
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Can physical training impact our mental toughness?

We are all aware of the importance of mental toughness, or resilience, in coping with stressors in sport and driving optimum physical performance. But, what if it also works the other way round – can physiological factors drive our mental state, and can we use this to our benefit? Research suggests that physiological stressors can…
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