The 2nd Step to Championship Mindset Training — Choose Your Identity! [A Guide to the Good Life by William Irvine]

The first step to developing a championship mindset is training your mind to create more moments of presence; more moments when you’re not lost in thought.

If you’re serious about becoming a champion, you must commit to this mindfulness practice.  Journal, meditate, reflect, pray; do whatever works for you!  Some practices are better than others, but the important thing is to make sure that you spend time each day alone with your thoughts (away from the input of other another human). This means no phone, tv, or music.

The practice will help you stop thoughtlessly responding to circumstances outside of your control. It will help you create more time and space to choose your most empowered response to your emotions, along with each and every conversation that you will inevitably be having with yourself throughout the day.  It is possible to change automatic negative thoughts (ANTs)  to automatic positive thoughts (AMPs), but like all things, to get good you must practice!

Need help on where to start your mindfulness practice start here? Don’t see the value yet? Click here.

Now for step 2 – Choose your Identity.  Once you have the ability to catch yourself lost in thought, you have the opportunity to choose your most empowered response.  You no longer have to react blindly to your emotions.

Your response starts with knowing the game that all of us humans are playing.  If you know your purpose for living you will constantly be asking yourself, “how would the best version of me respond in this present moment?

Acting on your answer to that question will lead you to eudaimonic happiness, which as mentioned is what Aristotle calls the summon bonnum, the highest good, the path to flourishing, how you can experience more moments of joy, and which allows you to reach your diverse secondary goals which come as a by-product of living with eudaimonia. This wisdom should be kept in the forefront of your mind as a guiding star, to keep you grounded, putting first things first.  Need, help? Check out this lesson on journaling on Eudaimonia in 20 seconds!

Everyone’s best-self will look different.  For simplicity’s sake, we organize our identity into ‘the big 3’  areas of your life (Energy/ Athletic Pursuits, Work/ School-Work, and Relationships).

The point is, to create an identity to call upon in the moments you need him/her.  This will trigger you to think of the core qualities that your identity embodies at their best, and the behaviors they will practice when they are at their best.

For example, as the identity of a Utah Lacrosse player, our course qualities are the pillars of Utah Lacrosse :

Journaling on this identity at the start of every day will help you automatically flip the switch and act as that identity when you need it. The more you practice, the more second-nature it will become; you will become good at catching yourself lost in thought, and responding as the best version of you!