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  • Writer's pictureTom Foxley

How To Turn Your Mindset Into Your Greatest CrossFit Strength

There are a handful of mostly ignored ways to make your mindset your greatest strength. Today I’ll share how I implement these with my athletes.

So many athletes name their mindset as their greatest problem, not their greatest strength.

They say their mindset gives up before their body.

Or their nerves prevent them from giving everything.

Or they just can’t believe in themselves enough to perform well.

You may be one of them.

Most people fail to bolster their mindset because they fail to see it as a trainable skill.

Today I’m going to share:

  • Why trying to change your mindset too soon may actually make it worse

  • How traditional goal setting just isn’t enough

  • Why your self-reputation is essential to your mindset change

  • And why you should give in to your weaknesses SOMETIMES

Don’t Try To Change Too Quickly

The first time you noticed your negative self-talk, you were probably shocked.

At this point, most athletes just try to change their self-talk. They try to force their mindset without the most important step:


In most cases, athletes aren’t aware enough of their mental state until after the fact to change their thoughts or emotions.

They’re carried along by the rollercoaster of emotion, and then it’s too late. They’ve already had their mindset blow up.

Instead, they need to just get better at watching.

Initially, they’ll be unconsciously incompetent. In other words, they’ll carry out the behaviour without realising they’re doing it. For example, they start shaking their head after missing lifts or experiencing negativity.

Then, they realise they need to change this. But they will experience negativity without being able to change it. They’re consciously incompetent.

Next, they will catch themselves in the middle of their negative self-talk and be able to force themselves to change. This is conscious competence.

Finally, they’ll practise this enough and will become unconsciously competent.

To change your mindset, the athletes I work with start by slowing down and by not trying to change too quickly.

Create a Vision, Not Goals

We’ve all been told we need to set goals. But really goals are just a starting point.

The best performing athletes I work with aren’t focusing on their immediate goals, they’re focusing on something far more controllable.

They’re focusing on the type of person they are.

This comes from identifying a broader view of not only what you want to achieve, but who you want to become.

Goals come and go. You hit or miss them.

But who you are is something which can continue to grow, and is achievable in any given moment.

Try answering these questions:

  1. To achieve my dream goals, how do I need to personally evolve?

  2. How do I currently hold myself back in competitions and which character skills can I develop to overcome this?

  3. What do I respect in others that I’d like to display more of myself?

The amazing thing is, the more you practise becoming the type of person in your vision, the more you’ll naturally make choices that line up to this.

Your reputation with yourself will begin to shift.


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