Author – Vedika Jogani
A recent graduate from Ithaca College with a Master’s degree in Sports and Exercise Science, specializing in Mental Performance, Vedika Jogani is OMP’s Product and Content Manager. During her studies, Vedika worked closely with Ithaca’s Men’s and Women’s Tennis Teams and Women’s Volleyball Team as their Mental Performance Consultant. Vedika is currently completing her Certified Mental Performance Consultant Certification.
In the pursuit of athletic excellence, there is a powerful tool that can significantly contribute to peak performance – gratitude journalling.
Science Behind Gratitude
Framed within the realm of positive psychology, practicing gratitude is in line with Fredrickson’s Broaden-and-Build Theory of Positive Emotions.
This theory states that gratitude can broaden an athlete’s perspective by noticing the good and enabling them to see opportunities and solutions more effectively.
This ultimately leads to building resilience, enduring personal resources and coping with challenges and pressures of sport.
Improved Mental Resilience
Athletes face numerous challenges — from injuries to setbacks in performance. Gratitude journaling provides a space for reflection on positive aspects of their journey, helping them build mental resilience.
Acknowledging and appreciating progress, no matter how small, can be a powerful motivator during challenging times.
Practicing gratitude increases sport satisfaction and social support. Athletes start to acknowledge and appreciate their progress along with expressing gratitude for their team, teammates and support system. This enables them to recognize and appreciate everyone who played a role in their journey.
How to Start Gratitude Journaling:
- Set Aside Time Daily: Dedicate a few minutes each day to reflect on positive aspects of your athletic journey.
- Use a Journal: Write down your thoughts in a dedicated gratitude journal. Having a tangible record can serve as a reminder of your journey and accomplishments.
- Be Specific: Instead of general statements, be specific about what you are grateful for. It could be progress in training, support from teammates, or a memorable achievement.
- Celebrate Progress: Whether big or small, celebrate your achievements. Gratitude journaling allows you to recognize and appreciate the steps you’ve taken toward your goals.
In the competitive realm of sports, where outcomes often take center stage, pause to reflect on the positives along your journey.
Take a moment to truly appreciate the hard work, dedication, and sacrifices that have propelled you to where you stand today.
Remember to extend your heartfelt gratitude to your team, teammates, and the support system that has been instrumental in your success.
Embrace the practice of gratitude by grabbing a journal and counting your blessings—it’s a meaningful step towards acknowledging the richness of your athletic experience.