The athlete who craves an outcome experiences a torrent of emotions as a direct result of this craving.
The emotions that he experiences negatively affect his performance. In response, he seeks advice as to how to deal with the emotional storm that is within him.
He then seeks advice from a coach or a consultant who prescribes a series of routines and rituals in an attempt to limit the effect of the emotions on his performance.
He may even be told to downplay the emotions or to disregard them. He may be told to breathe in a certain way and to keep an even countenance.
He practices these rituals, which almost becomes a sport in itself. When the rituals work, he is satisfied. When they don’t, he experiences the same emotions which are now directed toward the failure of the rituals.
He then seeks a new set of rituals. And the process begins anew.
Prescriptions, routines, and rituals have made the modern athlete a robot. While they may help to a degree, they will never unleash his ultimate performance.
Human beings are addicted to solutions.
Rare is the human being who explores the problem. The athlete seeks a prescription the way a sick man seeks a tonic. A desperate attempt at escape.
If you continue to run from your emotions, how far do you think you will get? Can one really escape himself?
It is because you keep wrapping yourself in bandages that you have become so stiff.
If you never explore the nature and source of your emotions, you will always be a slave to them.
Kapil Gupta, M.D.