Michael Phelps, Too?

I am listening to an interview with Michael Phelps. He has the most gold medals of anyone in history. He’s a champion. A winner. Nobody has ever done what he did.

And guess what he’s talking about? You’ll never guess.

He is talking about his depression. He came back from the Olympics and felt like a piece of meat. He is making a documentary about the struggles of top athletes and mental illness. There have apparently been a lot of suicides amongst that group and he wants to do something about it.

This is fascinating. In my “Getting Unstuck with Hilary” course I have taken on looking at what is between me and knocking the lid off of success. You may not think this is related to Michael Phelps, but keep reading and let me know if you think the two are connected.

The first thing in my quest that I have noticed is that I can do 99 great things and 1 mistake, and I focus on the one mistake.

This puts me in a negative energy swirl. I feel down, frustrated, resigned and like there is nothing good in the world or me. I don’t feel anything I do will work or be effective so my energy and attitude are in the tubes. Not a good recipe for success.

Seemingly unrelated, I started inquiring about “Registering Accomplishment” since that is the topic of the upcoming Global Conference for Transformation.

I noticed that when I alter my attention onto even one small accomplishment, my experience alters profoundly. I start soaring instead of sinking. My energy moves up, I get excited, and the world seems like an amazing place all of a sudden where anything is possible.

Well, imagine someone with Michael Phelps’s success. He says he was in a bad place mentally when he got home from the Olympics. Then he got a second DUI. He might have killed himself if he had had more than 2 Ambien left in his bottle. He made a mistake and might have done himself in. I would dare say that he wasn’t present to his accomplishments at this moment in his life.

I have seen this negative pattern in myself and others around me when:

  • We don’t do something we said we’d do.
  • We make a mistake
  • We use bad judgement
  • We don’t think we can speak up
  • We think no one will understand
  • We think something is wrong
  • We think something is wrong with us

These negative thoughts take us spiraling into a bad place. We feel alone and isolated. No matter WHAT GOOD WE HAVE ACCOMPLISHED, even for Michael Phelps, all we can see is the negative.

I did an experiment. I tried focusing on something good today after I dumped half of the container of black pepper into my chicken dish by mistake. I almost called myself an idiot. But I didn’t. Instead, I decided to just add more ingredients so the pepper would be absorbed. I can honestly say it ended up being delicious. Instead of focusing on my mistake, I said oops and created a new plan. I feel good and my energy is up.

I even made a joke about the pepper and had a great laugh with my friends. Amazing.

I am going to try to remember to practice “registering” accomplishment in the next few days and see what that does to my effectiveness, energy and outlook on life. Just as an experiment. It can’t hurt, can it?

Thanks for listening…….

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