Career Change By Emulating the Olympians

I have just returned from my summer break in sunny Spain where it was sweltering in the heat but we also had sea breezes to cool us down.  The Olympics have just finished. I watched most of the events with a Spanish commentary.  It was a great uplifting, emotional and wondrous spectacle that I felt I was experiencing for the first time.  My interest in the Olympics had waned for previous events but was renewed after the excitement of witnessing the torch relay as it passed in front of Brent Town Hall in North London, near my home and then watching London 2012.

Did y

ou know that many of the Olympians had a team of people supporting them to achieve a greater standard than they would have achieved alone?  The teams often consisted of a fitness and performance coach, a nutritionist, a physiotherapist and maybe others. The team ensured that the athlete’s focus and concentration all went into the task on hand and not on peripheral matters. For the first time, some Olympic coaches even used mobile apps to fine-tune performance.

Do you have a mentor or coach who has made a difference in your life? In your career change, take a lesson from the Olympians. Ensure that you get the support you need to accelerate your career change and enable you to achieve your goals faster. People who want to be an Olympic champion needed that little extra quality in their preparation that set them apart from their competitors.

All the athletes made great sacrifices in terms of their normal lives to train for the Olympics as they had little time for social lives, missing out on birthdays and spending time with their families. Doing what they did as athletes set them apart because they were willing to do that extra little bit that might take them to the top.

During their training, athletes are often seen as obsessive and selfish as they do whatever it takes to meet the standards required of them. While it is not a balanced way to live or normal for most of us, anyone who is striving for greatness in any area of life may need to make sacrifices to achieve their goals. What are you willing to sacrifice to achieve your career change?

Two of the factors that were shown to be crucial to an Olympian’s success were the athlete’s self-awareness and a strong coach–athlete relationship. Caroline Heaney of the Open University says that an Olympian’s self confidence and self belief are critical to their success. Also important is a positive mindset or self-talk to ensure that negative mind chatter does not lead to negative performance. Using imagery or visualisation techniques have shown remarkable results, for example, where an athlete visualised injured tissues healing.

Sports coaches, like other coaches, help athletes find their own strengths and abilities through a partnership built on mutual collaboration. The open-mindedness of the coach and their readiness to listen to the athlete and care about them as individuals has been central to this role. Not only do sports coaches require sports technical knowledge but ensure that good communication and trust is central to the relationship with the athlete.

Many sports coaches are former athletes who have found that they can really propel and inspire people to challenge themselves and to go on a journey of self discovery. They not only support an athlete in terms of optimal performance, sports coaches provide a vital role in the well-being of the athlete.

In your career change, will you emulate some of the above skills of the Olympians and access all your abilities to propel you forward into the life and career that you desire?  If you would like my support on your journey, go to

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