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It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Achievement Goals and Mental Toughness

“ To recognize your achievement goals is to know yourself.”

Frank Lieberman

Tony and I started our television show on June 4, 2013. We titled the show “It Has Nothing to Do With Age or Gender.” The theme for our show has to do with mental toughness. And our interviewees have demonstrated that grit. Our first show hosted Mike Keller, # 90 of the University of Michigan Wolverines and the Dallas Cowboys. Thursday’s show September 12, 2013 features Kirk Edgerton ultra runner and shoe expert.

The following is what I have learned these past two and half months from our guests. First, let me start out with the notion that we are born with a drive to survive. This means our neurotransmitters such as Norepinephrine, Dopamine ,Oxytocin, Serotonin, the building blocks of the brain, assist us with our competitiveness , which can be  called our “nature.” Of course, there are many factors, “nurture” that can reinforce or inhibit our competitiveness. Let’s take a look at some of the “ nurture” components that assisted with our guests competitive drive.

Let’s began talking about individual achievement goals. First, achievement goals are related to both performance and mastery.  A performance goal has three parts:1. A mastery goal that’s focuses on developing/learning  a new skill or understanding. 2 . A performance approach goal that results in gaining acclaim, approval, fame, etc. 3 . A performance avoidance goal that focuses on avoiding criticism or disapproval. To recognize your achievement goals, is to know yourself.

All of our guests are achievement goal oriented. There are no exceptions as our guests have attained new leaning's and/or recognition within their communities. For example, Mike Keller became an All-American and professional football player; Tim Twietmeyer a Western States legend; Cathy Rohm and Kathie Perry Tevis Cup champions; Jack Sholl , a Son of the American Revolution and a  gold medal sculler. For some, early parental influence from a father, mother, or both assisted them in their development.  In Kathie Perry, Chuck Mather, and Meghan Arbogast’s experience it was an authoritarian, disciplinarian father;  with Mike Keller it was  a highly driven achievement oriented, competitive mother.

Modeling, peer group  and  imitative behaviors  influenced  Tim Twietmeyer, Jonathan Jordan, Craig Thornley, Kathie Perry, Dan Barger, Tom Christofk, Mark Falcone,  and Don Freeman. Sibling rivalries were factors  and affected Mike Keller, Kathie Perry and Jonathan Jordan.

For Tom Christofk, Dan Barker, and Chuck Mather sports provided discipline, focus, achievement, self regulation, an opportunity for success,  at a time in adolescence when they were floating adrift. Through sports and the necessary training, they learned and excelled at such sports as rowing, ultra running and endurance riding.

Arnold Palmer said something to the effect “the more  I practice, the more luck I have.” For all of our high achieving, accomplished and exceptional athletes, none of them can be faulted about their lack of training or conditioning. None of them had cut corners when it came to learning and getting better at what they did. Remember, when you have an achievement goal , one automatically becomes future oriented. A future goal allows you to look forward as opposed to being stuck in the past or the present.

To be continued


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