The Psychology of Performance: How to Be Your Best in Life [TTC Video]
27 September 2017, 08:17
Course No 1699 | .MP4, AVC, 2000 kbps, 1280x720 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 11.31GB
In the classic joke, a New York tourist asks, “How do I get to Carnegie Hall?” The old answer: “Practice. Practice. Practice.”
Today, the relatively new science of performance psychology tells us that the old answer is incomplete at best. In The Psychology of Performance: How to Be Your Best in Life, clinical sport psychologist Eddie O’Connor, Ph.D., shares the best ways for you to reach your personal Carnegie Hall based on the latest scientific research—whether your performance environment is music, dance, business, or sport. These often surprising research results will make you rethink your own performance strategies, offering approaches you might never have considered and busting myths you might have taken as truth.
In addition to the scientific research, Dr. O’Connor brings a wealth of anecdotal examples from his twenty years of clinical experience working with youth, college, international, and professional athletes; health professionals; and corporate executives. His easy-going manner, ability to make scientific theory and research results accessible to all, and numerous illustrative videos and demonstrations provide an energetic and interactive learning environment.
Sport Psychology for the Athlete and Non-Athlete
If you are an elite athlete—or aspire to become one—The Psychology of Performance will help you better benefit from your practice and identify the mental and emotional approaches that will best support your performance goals over the long term. But whether or not you have any connection to the world of sports, this course will help you achieve your personal goals in your chosen field of performance. As Dr. O’Connor explains, the work of a sport psychologist is not defined by sport, but by the science of performance psychology, the mental aspects of superior performance in settings where excellence is central—often sports, but also the performing arts, business, high-risk professions such as the military, and many other fields.
In Dr. O’Connor’s work and in this course, sport is a lens through which to view the issues of practice, anxiety, injury, confidence, and more—issues that apply to any performer. And, if you are the parent of a young athlete or performer, Dr. O’Connor will help you understand this journey from your child’s perspective and how to best support him or her along the way, too.
In these 24 exciting half-hour lectures, Dr. O’Connor explains why:
- Practice might not lead to peak performance,
- Excellence in anything isn’t easy or natural,
- Talent is not necessary (and can even be a disadvantage),
- You are not limited by genetics,
- Positive thinking can get in your way, and
- Being a perfectionist can help you—and hurt you.
- Why 10,000 Hours Could Be Too Much—And Not Enough
Practicing an activity for 10,000 hours won’t make you great, or even good. Any person could practice shooting a basket for 10,000 hours, but that wouldn’t make him or her a great basketball player. Why not? Because contrary to what you might have heard, practice does not make perfect. Practice makes permanent. If you’re practicing incorrect technique, even two hours is too much.
Research reveals there is really only one thing that distinguishes those who achieve peak performance from everyone else: the amount of time spent in deliberate, purposeful, goal-oriented practice. This type of practice requires feedback from an expert coach, precise goals for each practice session, intense focus, and challenging yourself to consistently move forward out of your comfort zone.
Neuroscientists using brain-imaging techniques have discovered that the brains of individuals that have developed a specific skill over time differ from those without the skill. For example, in musicians, the cerebellum (a part of the brain that plays an important role in controlling body movements) is larger than in non-musicians. Similarly, there is more gray matter in three regions of the brain that plays a role in visualizing and controlling the diving movements of the body in divers than in non-divers.
If talent were the cause of these differences, they would show up in childhood before training began. But they don’t. Instead, they show up only in individuals who have dedicated themselves over time to the appropriate amount and type of practice. We’ve always known that physical training can reshape our bodies. This exciting research reveals that appropriate training can also modify the structure and function of our brains, resulting in an increased neurological ability to perform a particular skill. Purposeful practice gets you there. And it’s the only thing that can.
Mindfulness as a Performance Strategy
If you’ve never practiced mindfulness meditation, you might imagine it as a relaxation exercise on the floor at the end of a yoga class. To the contrary, Dr. O’Connor explains and demonstrates that mindfulness—paying attention in a particular way, with purpose, focused on the present moment, without judgment—can be practiced in a suit sitting in your desk chair, on the playing field, or anywhere else. Maybe you have tried a mindfulness practice and felt like a failure because you can’t seem to control your mind. In true mindfulness training, your wandering mind is not a problem; the benefit comes in actively bringing your thoughts back to focus over and over again. Constant awareness and self-correction is the point of the practice.
People have been using mindfulness techniques for at least 2,500 years and they have been widely applied in medical settings and psychotherapy. Although its use as a performance strategy is in its infancy, science has already revealed positive changes in the brain, such as automatic and improved response to emotions and improved behavioral decision-making in the face of stress, after just eight weeks of mindfulness training.
The core belief of a mindful approach is that a person performs best when maintaining a state of non-judgmental, moment-to-moment awareness and acceptance of one’s internal state, with attention focused on what is essential for performance, coupled with consistent, intentional effort that supports what the performer values most.
Conquering the Obstacles to Success
In The Psychology of Performance: How to Be Your Best in Life, you will learn how to tackle some of the greatest challenges that arise as you work towards your goals. The very first step is to clearly define those goals and your values, discovering how to shape your practice and performance as you go. Even with your path clearly defined, however, there are difficulties you will need to tackle along the way.
One of the most common roadblocks to success is performance anxiety, which you can learn to overcome through imagery techniques and other tools. A crucial thing to remember as you “get in the zone”—that psychological place where everything comes together and feels easy—is to remember to be compassionate to yourself when you don’t succeed right away. Pushing ahead and struggling will always be a part of accomplishing your goals; Dr. O’Connor teaches not only how to succeed, but how to deal with the negative parts of your journey as well, including how to identify and prevent burnout.
The relatively new field of performance psychology is helping performers around the world up their mental, emotional, and physical games in sport, dance, art, and business. With The Psychology of Performance: How to Be Your Best in Life, you, too, can aim for the top with scientifically proven theories and skills.
How to Make Stress Work for You [TTC Video]
27 September 2017, 07:37
Course No 9190 | .MP4, AVC, 2400 kbps, 1280x720 | AAC, 192 kbps, 2 Ch | 18x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 8.8GB
Life is stressful. There’s just no getting around it. But while everyday stressors are a fact of life, that doesn’t mean they have to control you. Rather, with the right scientific understanding, you can actually make stress work for you instead of against you.
According to fitness and wellness consultant Dr. Kimberlee Bethany Bonura, trying to live a completely stress-free life is a zero-sum game. Life without stress is an apathetic life in which nothing matters. The true goal of your relationship with stress is to figure out how to manage it effectively; how to use it to build and support a meaningful, resilient life.
Recent years have seen a wealth of new insights into the science of stress and its effects on our physiological and psychological health. These insights, the product of fascinating research and studies, are more than simply interesting to learn about. They’re vital, powerful tools you can use to transform how you think about (and react to) stress, whether everyday stressors like traffic jams or unexpected traumas like a death in the family.
The bottom line, according to Dr. Bonura: “You can still find joy in this moment, in this chaos, in this life, by learning to be your own ultimate master of stress.”
With the 18 enriching and inspiring lectures of How to Make Stress Work for You, Dr. Bonura shows you how to manage and minimize the stress in your life. You’ll learn how to identify the types of stress you’re most vulnerable to, what your current stress responses are, ways to manage your response to stress (including key behavior modifications and mental exercises), and a plethora of other relevant, practical, and even essential information on integrating stress into a healthy lifestyle. Rooted in scientific findings from experiments, research papers, case studies, and first-hand experiences from Dr. Bonura’s life and career, this course offers you nothing less than a bold new way of facing (and appreciating) daily life.
EXPLORE THE NUANCES OF HOW STRESS WORKS
Think of stress management as a toll road, with an initial cost to get on but with long-term savings. The strategies and techniques required to master the stress in your life take some initial work to learn—and ongoing practice to hone and strengthen. But the investment, in the long run, will end up saving you time, energy, money, and preserve your mental health.
Designed to be your helpful companion in this process, How to Make Stress Work for You elucidates the realities of stress: how it works, why it affects us the way it does, and the importance of managing it.
Throughout these lectures, you’ll explore the nuances of stress in ways you may never have considered.
- Types of stress: One important thing to understand about stress is that different stressors have different positions on what Dr. Bonura calls your personal “stress continuum.” There are traumas (for example, major illness) which are deeply stressful and often outside your control; moderate stressors (like work deadlines) that are more contained and manageable; and activities of daily living (such as laundry or getting dinner on the table) that can be stressful depending on your personality.
- A matter of perception: New approaches to stress management take into account the fact that you never directly experience any stimuli. Instead, what you’re experiencing is the brain’s interpretation of raw input (sights, sounds) using memory, analysis, and reasoning. That’s why one important step in stress management is understanding that what you’re responding to in life are your perceptions—not the stimuli itself.
- Busting emotional myths: Throughout these lectures, Dr. Bonura busts common misperceptions about our emotions and their relationship to stress. It turns out, for example, that the continued pursuit of happiness is, in and of itself, stressful. And if you think expressing your rage through punching a pillow is helpful, think again; it could actually be making you angrier.
- The power of meditation: Meditation can dramatically improve your relationship with the stress in your life. You may have already practiced this essential skill without having gone to a meditation class. How can that be? At its core, meditation is the skill of keeping your mind and your awareness in the present moment.
BUILD A STRESS MANAGEMENT TOOLKIT
Each of us responds to stress in our own way. That’s why Dr. Bonura fills How to Make Stress Work for You with scientifically-backed techniques, behavior modifications, and simple exercises you can use to build a personalized toolkit for managing your stress response. You will explore tools like:
- Detachment: Research shows that by detaching yourself from certain provocations and taking a “fly-on-the-wall” perspective you may more effectively let go of stressful emotions like anger.
- Affection: At the University of Notre Dame, researchers found that adults who received more hugs in childhood had less anxiety as adults.
- Rumination: If you ruminate right after a traumatic moment, you may better process the event neurologically and avoid getting stuck in that neural path in the future.
- Creativity: Outlets like art therapy offer a unique opportunity for healing and restoration through the creative process.
BE YOUR OWN STRESS CHAMPION
With the insights of a health expert and the compassion of a helpful friend, Dr. Bonura makes How to Make Stress Work for You a supportive outlet to turn to whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed by stress. A realist, her goal is not to cure you of harmful stress but to put you in better control of it.
“Fundamentally, we’re not looking for stress-free lives or stress freedom” she says. “We just want to feel like the stress that we experience leads to something we truly care about. That is when we are champions of our own stress.”
Warm and encouraging, her experience giving one-on-one help to individuals gives these lectures the feel of a private, personal conversation. Dr. Bonura walks you step-by-step through the course’s cognitive exercises, demonstrating just how easy it is to finally take charge of your stress.
Boosting Your Emotional Intelligence [TTC Video]
27 September 2017, 07:18
Course No 9654 | .MP4, AVC, 1000 kbps, 1280x720 | AAC, 96 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 5.98GB
We have all had experiences with people that prove that those with the highest IQs are not always the most successful. For example, you may have encountered the technology wizard who’s never been promoted because he isn’t a team player. Or the tenured professor who has no idea why her grown children avoid her. Or the award-winning designer whose temper has caused him lost clients and financial ruin. These are all exceptionally bright individuals with recognized talent in their fields. And yet each has failed to reach his or her own career, personal, or financial goals.
What are these very intelligent people missing?
Chances are, what’s missing is emotional intelligence—the ability to perceive, understand, and manage emotions in ourselves and others. Sounds very powerful, doesn’t it? Can we really manage our own emotions, as opposed to having our emotions run the show? Could we really effect change in the emotions of our coworkers or family members?
The answer to all these questions is a resounding “yes.” Emotional intelligence (or EQ) is a measurement bolstered by a powerful set of skills we can use to improve our quality of life and better meet our goals. As Professor Jason M. Satterfield of the University of California, San Francisco, explains in the 24 informative half-hour lectures of Boosting Your Emotional Intelligence, EQ is an invaluable ability that can be learned, practiced, and used with positive results.
Although emotions have been discussed and debated for millennia, emotional intelligence as a field of inquiry is relatively new, with the term itself first appearing in psychology literature less than thirty-five years ago. In this engaging course, Dr. Satterfield explores:
- Historic philosophical and scientific understandings of emotion
- The current definition of emotions and the purposes they serve in our lives
- Whether or not any given emotion is inherently “good” or “bad”
- The cultural context of emotions
- The major models of emotional intelligence, their strengths and potential weaknesses, and which parts of each model we might best use to understand our own emotions
- The most common ways EQ is measured and the reliability and validity of each methodology
- The relationship between emotional intelligence and social intelligence
- The newest technological tools intended to increase EQ.
The Impacts of Your Emotions
Whether or not you understand your emotions and their resultant behaviors, they leave their impacts like footprints all over the situations and people with whom you interact throughout your life. If your emotions are constantly running wild and you are hypersensitive to every personal interaction, coworkers might try to avoid your predictable high-energy chaos. If your emotions are shut down tight and rarely see the light of day, friends and partners might eventually stop trying to connect with you on the most personal and intimate levels. You might not be aware of what’s happening in those relationships and what’s causing people to back away from you—but you are impacted by their behavioral choices nevertheless.
In addition, your emotions impact your own cognition, decision-making, and physical body every day. Have you ever been nervous before an academic test or performance review and felt “butterflies” in your stomach? Have you ever felt so surprised or fearful that you “couldn’t think straight?” Or so happy that your physical pain seemed to lessen? In this course, Dr. Satterfield explains the many complex interactions and feedback loops between our emotions, physical body, and cognition.
Learning About Your Emotions
Emotions are visceral experiences. In fact, by definition, they involve whole-body changes in our subjective experience, behavior, and physiology. Since the best way to learn about emotions is to involve as many senses as possible, Dr. Satterfield illustrates his material with a variety of appealing and helpful images, movie clips, and other videos.
In particular, we have the opportunity to watch the development of EQ in action as Dr. Satterfield interacts with three “patients” at many points during this course. We learn from his conversations with:
- Carol, a 31-year-old who is learning emotion regulation in order to successfully meet her goals with respect to a new job and her first serious boyfriend
- Michael, a 51-year-old partner in an architectural firm who is using executive coaching to improve his work performance
- Maria, a recently widowed 71-year-old who wants to better manage her grief and move forward with her life.
How Did I Get This Way—and What Now?
Were you born with the emotional make-up you have today or did you develop it over time? To help you understand the history of your personal EQ, you might want to think about it the same way you think about your athletic ability.
Just as some children seem to be born with a natural athletic ability or more easy-going personalities, some aspects of emotional intelligence are inherited. For example, research has shown that approximately 20 percent of adult Americans have a genetic mutation that makes them inherently less anxious. But no matter your genetic makeup, childhood experiences also play a role. Did your caregivers take you outside to play catch or did they sit you in front of the TV all day? As your EQ was developing, did your parents encourage you to express yourself? Or did they fly off in a rage and then tell you what you should and should not be feeling? Did you have a school coach who helped you learn the correct way to throw a ball? A counselor who helped you understand and overcome your fear of social situations? Each of those factors helped shape your adult abilities and habits—and your EQ.
Fortunately, however, this is where the analogy ends. Because while it might be just a bit too late for you to become a football star, it is never too late to improve your life by improving your EQ. In Boosting Your Emotional Intelligence, you will learn:
- How to identify and monitor your own emotions
- How to choose which emotional responses you might want to change to better meet your personal goals
- A variety of techniques and skills to help you regulate your own emotions
- How to identify and monitor emotions in others
- When and how to best influence emotions in others
- A step-by-step process for building your own interactive Skills Tracker to improve your personal EQ
- Where to find numerous online resources to test, model, and improve your EQ as an ongoing, unlimited learning experience.
With the tools and skills you gather from this exciting, interactive course, you will be able to improve your emotional intelligence now and throughout your life—using your emotions as you want, to help reach your own personal goals.