Mental toughness is a trait required for success in any field. It’s what gives your goals resilience, gets you over adversity and lets you follow through with what you set out to do in the first place.
When it comes to bodybuilding, you don’t just need your body but also your mind to collaborate together.
You have to put your mind to the game to win it. For many people, bodybuilding doesn’t work out because they don’t have their mind in the game.
What separates the successful from others is not only their dedication or motivation but also their mindset. So it’s not only your physical competency that will set you apart but also mental attitude towards getting to your goals.
Here’s what you need to look for in the mindset of a champion:
If you want to build quality muscle mass, you’ll need to be very dedicated to your goals. It’s a strong set of beliefs you’ll need to follow where your goals are defined clearly.
Your dedication, may, at times, be dictated by your physical strength, stamina and endurance. On other occasions, you may be driven on by your eagerness to learn. But whatever the case, you need to believe whole heartedly that you are cut out to achieve your goals.
There will be times when your dedication and determination may waver but you need to stay on course. You’ll need constant reminders of why you started this journey in the first place and that thought should keep you on track.
Dedication can also be reinforced if you’re always willing to learn. This willingness becomes the driving force for continuing and improving your craft by constant practice. This way you can develop grit and achieve the mindset of a go-getter.
For added motivation you could have posters of professionals on your walls or in your phone. This is another way to stay focused.
When you look at those pictures, you’ll be reminded of why you started in the first place.
Distractions can make you derail from your priorities and goals. When you lose focus, you lose the game. That’s why it’s absolutely imperative that you keep distractions away. Even when you’re faced with distractions, you need to muster up the determination to ignore them completely.
For instance, if you’ve already chalked out a workout routine, you need to stick to it no matter what. Champion athletes and bodybuilders know that they have the potential to improve and don’t let distractions get in the way. Missing out one day of training can quickly evolve into a pattern of laziness, but champions never let it get to that point.
One thing that works quite well is planning your day beforehand. When you’ve already planned your day, you’re more likely to follow through. Being spontaneous is great, but doesn’t always deliver when you have an agenda to follow.
Having said that, you can’t completely get rid of distractions because they’re an integral part of productivity. However, you can train your mind to ignore any distraction that comes your way. Look at the bigger picture and keep yourself focused on that.
Finish What You Started
Many people start their muscle building routine with a lot of excitement and passion but they don’t finish because they either get distracted or become lazy on the way. You need to keep the same level of motivation going on as you had on the first day of your training.
Something that works well for this is to keep track of your progress. If you can see how you’re progressing, you’ll be tempted to finish what you’ve started.
To make things easier, you could make a checklist for yourself. Write the different exercises that you have to do on every day of the week. Just ticking off the task from your list will give you a sense of satisfaction. This is necessary if you want to reach the finish line without tiring out or losing focus.
Keep telling yourself how close you are to your goals and how much you’ve achieved so far. Set both short and long term goals to keep going. The short term goals can act as catalysts for long term ones.
Build Positive Mental Habits
It’s very important to build positive mental habits. You’d be surprised to know how much influence your brain has on your body.
To start off, stop comparing yourself to others. This is one of those mental habits that’ll always leave you unsatisfied and ungrateful. Stop comparing yourself to other bodybuilders or your buddies in the gym. You’ve your own goals and they have theirs.
Another mental habit that often brings you down is thinking that you are a failure. So, you weren’t able to finish your reps because you had a long day at work. That doesn’t make you a failure. It’s just one day. Pick yourself up and work harder the next day.
If you have a champion mindset, you won’t let any limiting beliefs or destructive self-talk get in the way. Instead, you’ll have mastered
your mind in such a way that only the positive makes an impression and the negative doesn’t become a deterrent.
At the same time, being a perfectionist is also a mental habit that can limit you. If you want everything to be perfect, you end up not even meeting your own standards. Instead, you always criticize yourself. This attitude can easily overwhelm you and that is never good for anything.
If you want to be good at something, that’s awesome. You must always remember that everything can’t and won’t ever be perfect. Don’t give yourself a hard time just because you ate one unhealthy snack in a week. That snack might not affect your muscle gains but that self-demotivating will definitely affect your mind.
You have to be your biggest influencer because no one else is going to do it for you.
Push Yourself beyond Normal Limits
Always push yourself forward. If you think that you’ve learnt how to do one thing perfectly, it’s time to move on to a harder level. The trick is to get out of your comfort zone and you’d be surprised at the potential your body has.
Put this potential to test and train your body to do harder and better things.
It’s a step by step procedure where your body will learn one thing first and then advance to another level. Don’t limit yourself to the same exercises that you’ve been doing for months now. Try new things and test your potential.
To keep your motivation going, get your inspiration from people around you. If you think that there’s no one to inspire you, go online and talk to bodybuilders from around the world. Read about people who started with thin schoolboy bodies and are now ripped.
You’ll feel the urge to push harder once you realize that it can be done and others have done it. If you’ve got your mind under control, your body will definitely follow.