Motocross – A Resilience MOT For Your Mind

You’ve been looking forward to the weekend, you’re pumped ready to ride, Helmet on, world off!

Then comes the dreaded status update… ‘tracks closed’.

…now what?

It’s tough when you look forward to getting out there to race and practice and it’s taken away in an instant, it’s out of your control and that can feel frustrating right?

That feeling of frustration is amplified by the lack of control over the situation, we can’t control the weather. We can however control how we respond to it.

Respond with ‘Psychological Hardiness’.

This requires resilience, resilience is to become strong, healthy or successful again after something negative has happened, the ability of something to return to its original shape after it has been pulled, stretched pressed or bent, but what does that mean to us as a human being? As real people with real feelings and emotions?

Motocross as we know is ranked right up there as one of the toughest sports in the world. What riders choose to do (as often as possible) demands psychological hardiness.

So let me break down the definition further ‘after something negative has happened’

Frustrating and negative things are always going to happen, whether we like it or not. That could be before, during or after a race/practice session… it’s not something that’s going to stop or simply ‘get switched off’ because we would prefer it not to happen, so we have to find another way to handle it.

Increasing your awareness of how you are currently responding to this negativity is totally in your control. Knowing how you might want to respond to these challenges in the future can have a massive impact on the way in which you ride, it seriously Matters!

We absolutely know that resilient people tend to be happier than the average person, better relationships, less anxiety and lower levels of depression and demonstrate something we call ‘bouncability’.

In the context of GRIT this means Gritty People may say “Oh that’s ******** annoying, the tracks closed, or the race is cancelled” They then sit with that frustration for a very short while then quickly move into action. Gritty People find another way, they move to a place of
“What can I do instead which will contribute to my training in another way than ‘seat time’ “

How are you going to take the situation whatever it may be and turn it around in order to make it work for you?

We all have the option of becoming more resilient. Research has also shown that resilience is not genetic, We can all become resilient – until recently it was thought it was a quality you were born with, we now know it is a skill and like any other skill it can be learn’t! just like riding MX!

Are you ready for you Resilience MOT?

M.O.T = Meaning – Opportunity – Take control

Meaning: With your psychological hardiness you tend to have and hold a sense of purpose in what you do.

Remind yourself why you ride MX, who you do it for and what you’re are aiming to achieve. Then make a plan to spend your time while the track is closed doing something to contribute to this goal in another way.

– Go to the gym
– Do some yoga/meditation
– Prepare a nutritious meal
– Read up to further develop your skills

Opportunity: With your psychological hardiness, you enjoy a challenge. You generally see yourself as capable of change and expect life around you to change, you recognize mistakes are cause for learning, losses are preludes to winning, weaknesses create opportunities to grow and become better.

Take some time to reflect on what opportunities the track closures have created for you, rather than a loss of practice time, change your perspective to an opportunity to…

Take Control: With your psychological hardiness you have a sense that there are things you can do, now you focus in the domain of what you can do, rather than what’s outside your control, to be more hardy and less painfully stressed.

Control the controllables – focus on what you can control.
I can’t control the traffic. I can control the way I respond to it and the meaning I make of it.

I can’t control the weather, I can control how I prepare for the weather.

I can’t control the track closure, I can control how I put Meaning, Opportunity & Control into how I respond to it.

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