Above the Line

iStock_72926493_XLARGE.jpgPlaying above the line will strengthen you, and give you greater courage and confidence in your sporting journey, now and in the future.

In its simplest form, there are two ways people play, either above the line or below the line. Our attitudes, behaviours, physiology, emotions and responses are quite different above or below the line. When we play above the line, we make better decisions, react and respond healthier to what life throws at us, and we interact with people and life more effectively. The challenge for each of us is to become aware of our thinking, and shift it from below to above. Remember that almost everything starts with a thought, both conscious thoughts and unconscious ones.

Everyone has experiences that are not positive in sport. Dealing with heartbreak, betrayal, loss, disappointment and poor performance. Playing and thinking above the line enables and empowers a fresh perspective, develops a deeper resilience, confidence, courage and a desire to stay on track and be internally positive.  Below the line playing and thinking will look at the event or the circumstance as the source of whatever you are feeling and experiencing. The external event is only about 10% of the source of your experience, but the much bigger source (90%) is your inside reality. Your inner world, your internal thinking and whether you are living above or below the line.

When we think and play below the line, we make poorer decisions, judgments and choices. We can react badly to conflict, and respond unhealthily to challenges. We can slowly become entrenched in a spiral downwards of dysfunctional behaviour, depression and ultimately isolation. Below the line thinking and playing is at times easier, and it certainly takes less effort and appears to be quite acceptable in our culture today.

There are three primary elements to each way of thinking and playing that can help us identify if we are living and thinking above or below the line.

B.E.D is for below the line and stands for 1/ blame, 2/ excuses and 3/ denial. Below the line is usually connected to one of these three elements. It’s everything or everyone else’s fault. We blame our parents, our coach, the government, our partner, our friend or our circumstances for our behaviour or choices.

The truth is though; we are 100% responsible for our behaviour, and our choices. (Unless you are forced) It is up to us. When we learn to take responsibility for our behaviour, actions and choices, we are empowered in life.

You have little control over others, and it is much easier and more effective to work on and change your own inner world, than it is to try and change the external events, circumstances or people (Like your parents, teachers, job, etc)

You can’t change your upbringing. You can’t change your past. You can however create, determine and change your future, by changing the way you think.

The reality is, we all go below the line, I do, you do … everyone does. However, there is a big difference between living and visiting, and where you are most of the time is where you live. I am not saying that if you just think positive, everything will be better, that the pain will go away, or that life will always be wonderful. No. That is not what this is about. Life will throw crap your way. You will hurt. You will go through hard times. The way you think will empower 

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