Recovering a Winning Mentality

Recovering a Winning Mentality

Earlier this month, we received an email from a Simple Truths fan, telling us about how she uses our movies and books. Maggie had such a compelling story that we had to share it with you! The following is her short story to get you in the "winning" mentality.

Several years ago I was contacted by a new high school varsity coach who was at his wit's end. The year before, his new football team had

Maggie Ferrari, Owner of Transitions: Mental Conditioning for Athletic Excellence

only one win all season, and it had been almost ten years since the team had made it to the play-offs.

During our initial meeting the Coach explained that every varsity player had worked extremely hard throughout the winter and spring in the weight room. There seemed to be newfound camaraderie between all of his team members and he really liked what he was seeing...but his team was still not anywhere near where he felt they needed to be. He needed help.

He went on to say, "The only thing they seem to be lacking is any real measure of self-belief and confidence." He believed if his team could gain a better attitude and somehow forget about the past, they might just have a respectable season and could then prepare for an even better showing the following year.

A few days later, after working out all of the details, the Coach offered my program to his players. I began Mental Conditioning sessions that same week.

The first night only five team members showed up. By the second session, nine players attended. By session three, fourteen players were in attendance. During another session, we reached our peak in attendance. Twenty-two of the 68 players attended. The Coach wasn't kidding. Although they all appeared to be in great physical shape, it was obvious they were absolutely mentally and emotionally deflated. Their body language alone spoke volumes.

Used with permission from Maggie Ferrari

Early on, I asked them, "Do you BELIEVE you are capable of winning games this year?"

After a long, uncomfortable silence, one player finally spoke up and said, "No, because no matter what we do, we lose."

It was clear to me that we had a lot of work to do.

As we gathered each week for session work, I had the boys watch three Simple Truths movies: The Power of Teamwork, 212 The Extra Degree and What it Takes to be Number One. These movies, I firmly believe, set the mood for the work we did every week and ultimately made all the difference in the world! These kids live in a high tech world, and the music, the visuals, and the message quickly drew them in. Because of Simple Truths, I had their attention, and they were incredibly open and receptive each and every week.

I secretly wondered if my sessions were as effective with only part of the team attending as they would be if I had the entire team. To my welcome relief, my question was answered powerfully just a few days later on the field.

From my vantage point on the bleachers, it was as if there was a brand new team on the football field for the season opener that night. By the end of the first quarter, it was quite apparent the team had significantly improved their energy levels, endurance, and stamina. They charged out onto the field looking fierce, determined, and confident. As the game progressed, their performance got better and better as they worked beautifully together as a team. They supported and rallied one another, and the team captains strutted up and down the line offering encouragement by way of high-fives, chest thumping, helmet whacking and cheers. That said, by the end of the first half, they were leading 20 to 7.

What struck me most of all was the way they were suddenly playing as though there was no such thing as the possibility of defeat. The difference between their pre-season scrimmages and the season opener was like night and day. They had embraced a whole new attitude: they were on that field to win. The final score was 38 - 14.

In addition to great coaching and an intensive physical training regimen, Mental Conditioning helped remove the self-defeating thoughts, feelings and attitudes that had been preventing this team from moving forward for far too long. The messages in Simple Truths movies provided hope and gave them increased faith that indeed -- anything WAS possible.

Getting back to the players...

Mid-way through the season, after viewing the Simple Truths movies for the umpteenth time, one of the team captains told me he had an important announcement to make. He stood up, walked proudly to the front of the room and simply said, "We just wanted to let you know what WE have decided."

I smiled, looking around the room, noting their new level of confidence and feeling very proud of all of them.

The team captain continued:

"WE are going to make it to the play-offs this year."

THEY had decided.

THEY were going to make it to the play-offs.

Not try.

He was emphatic.

They WERE going to make it to the play-offs.

Twenty-two out of 68 varsity team members had "decided."

Interesting choice of words, don't you think?

But you know what?

That is precisely what they did.

Maggie Ferrari, CHT is a graduate of the Hypnotherapy Academy of America where she received the professional designations; Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Medical Support Hypnotist and Master Hypnotist.

Julie L, used with permission from Maggie FerrariIn addition, Maggie has earned advanced certifications in Sports Hypnosis, Peak Performance Training and Mental Conditioning for Sports. Ms. Ferrari is also the founder and owner of Transitions: Mental Conditioning for Athletic Excellence, located in East Greenbush, New York.

Assisting athletes, coaches and teams is the core of Maggie's private practice. She works with athletes in all different sports, age groups and levels of ability to help them become the best they can be. Her client base currently stands at nearly 1400 and includes many of the best young athletes in the United States and beyond. From junior high school all the way up to elite and professional levels, Maggie's various programs have helped athletes improve their performance and gain a real competitive edge.

Ms. Ferrari is a member of the American Council of Hypnotist Examiners, the National Guild of Hypnotists and the International Association of Counselors and Therapists.

October 29, 2009
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