Think back to when you’ve felt nervous. A presentation for work. Free throws with your team down by one. Auditioning for a part. Taking a exam. Were you at less than your best? Did your hands shake? Did your heart race? Did you have a “pit” in your stomach?
If so, you were experiencing what is known as the “acute stress response” – A complex combination of physical and mental processes that work together to either drive or undercut our performance in high pressure situations. Performance Psychology provides tools to minimize the negative effects of stress and maximize performance.
I originally began studying Performance Psychology specifically to bolster my coaching. However, I found that the performance challenges athletes faced were very similar to those my students faced in the classroom, as were the mental techniques used to overcome them. I have since founded a Consulting practice – Arete Performance Consulting – on the principle that Performance Psychology skills are useful for anyone seeking to maximize their personal performance, whether that’s athletic, academic, or public/artistic performance.
I have contributed to the Human Performance Resource Center (a Department of Defense initiative) as a subject matter expert on Goal-Setting. I am also a member of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology, the American Psychological Association, APA Division 47: The Society for Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology, and the Los Angeles County Psychological Association.
Visit my practice at Aretology.com for more information.