Controlling Your Olympic Moment with Dr. Anne Shadle, Certified Mental Performance Consultant
Dr. Anne Shadle is a graduate of the University of Nebraska, where she earned her B.S. in Exercise Science. During her undergraduate career, Shadle was a member of the Huskers’ national powerhouse track and field team. She was an NCAA National Champion in both the indoor mile and the outdoor 1500 meters. Following graduation, Shadle ran three years professionally for Reebok and was a 2008 Olympic Trials semifinalist.
Shadle went on to earn her Masters Degree from the University of Missouri in Sport Psychology. She also earned her Ph.D. in Health Education and Promotion. Her research focused on understanding the psycho-emotional challenges, preparations and responses of Olympic Gold Medal-winning athletes. Shadle is a certified mental performance consultant (CMPC) and is a member of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee’s (USOPC) Sport Psychology registry. She also serves as a performance consultant for the NBA and has been part of the performance enhancement and mental health programming for the NBA.
In this episode, Anne and Cindra discuss:
- What it means to control your Olympic moment
- The top findings from her research with Olympians
- Mindset strategies she used as a professional runner
- The mindset characteristics the world’s best
- Obstacles that get in the way of our success
Athlete Manual Controlling Your Olympic Moment
Cindra Kamphoff: Thank you so much Annie shade all for joining us here on the high- performance mindset podcast how are you doing today?
Anne Shadle: Having a great day, you know springs springtime is here and track season is here, so all those things bring me joy.
Cindra Kamphoff: I know it brings me joy too I love the spring and I love tracking the field and I’m really looking forward to talking with you today we’ve been having this conversation on our calendar for a while, so I’m just really excited to dive into your work and share it with everyone on the podcast so thank you so much for joining us.
Anne Shadle: yeah thanks for having me this is fun.
Cindra Kamphoff: So if you are joining us on Facebook, you can ask us any questions there so just posted under the comments and I’ll make sure to be looking at them throughout our conversation so, and if you haven’t joined us yes yeah make sure you head over to the high performance mindset Facebook group where we’ll be posting these live. So, as we dive into the conversation here Annie tell us about what you’re passionate about and what you’re doing right now?
Anne Shadle: Yeah so um what I am passionate about that’s it that’s a hard question for me to answer, but really my interest is always in in people like I love people I think people are super interesting and I definitely love to see people happy healthy thriving my area that I love is is athletics and performance high performance, but, at the heart, I really care about people and just want to see people happy healthy thriving in their life moving towards their goals moving through that adversity and just happy healthy and fulfilled in their lives.
Cindra Kamphoff: That’s beautiful and people really need that because I think given everything we’ve gone through in the last year for sure it’s hard to kind of get there sometimes. So, tell us a little bit about what you’re doing now, in terms of your career?
Anne Shadle: Yeah so I’m a little bit about my background so grew up in Nebraska from Nebraska went to the University of Nebraska ran track and field there and during that time I was definitely interested in in more of the exercise science side So how do we train our bodies, how do we optimize our performance physically and then kind of through those experiences thought more about this mental side, so at Nebraska definitely learned a lot about high performance and you know what it really takes to be the best in the environment that I was in at Nebraska definitely led a lot of curiosity, so my own my own goal setting of wanting to be the best track and field athlete that I could always wanting to better my times win races pretty competitive and Nebraska the culture is excellence and excellence is expected, so I think just that environment that I that I really grew up in just kind of fed that own mindset into myself and the own curiosity of what do the best athletes do so at Nebraska on the track and field team, it was pretty much a powerhouse when I was there, so as a school as a powerhouse
know you know my peers were Olympic medal winners priscilla Lopes is a perfect example of that so she was bronze medalist in 2008 a really good friend of mine, and I was very curious to know like what do the best in the world do and even the best athletes at Nebraska you know what do they do and through just interactions with teammates and paying attention to you even other sports other coaches at the University of Nebraska that curiosity of what it takes to be the best definitely was sparked there, and as I moved through my career at Nebraska was fortunate enough to go on, and race professionally so I was a two time national champion at Nebraska and that kind of paved the way for me to pursue my athletic dream of being an Olympic being an Olympian and kind of through that journey of professional athletics and all of the nuances that you kind of go through psychology came up more and more and I understood the challenges that athletes face and even in my with my teammates at Nebraska understood injury understood hard times in life, all the things outside of sports, as well as all the stress and pressures on you within sport, so that was just probably even magnified on the professional level and so after my professional career returned Back to School to study sports psychology and from that kind of those passions of my own experiences have led me to my research area of really wanting to understand high performance. So, not only within the individual what it takes, but also those environments those cultures of winning leadership right, so all of the things that go, we can think of that go into high performance.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah oh excellent there’s so many things that we’re going to dive into today in this episode and I think the first question that I want to ask you Andy is when you think about your own success and we grew up in similar areas which is pretty fun and basically an hour away from each other didn’t compete against each other, but yeah I was a track and field athlete as well and I’m just going to thinking about your success to time NCAA champion and all American miler, you’re competing at the University of Nebraska you’ve ran professionally, what do you think was you know, a key mental factor, or some key matt mental factors in your success in general?
Anne Shadle: Um I would say that growing up in Nebraska I was small town Nebraska South city Nebraska and I think the environment that was shaped for me there so early on experiences. I had coaches male coaches that were very invested in me as a female athlete and I think at in South Sioux city we’re still another powerhouse and girls basketball and I love basketball that was kind of my sport. One of my favorite coaches and basketball, he was my favorite coach was coach Farrell and I had him in seventh grade as a basketball coach and he really you know was positive, encouraging made basketball fun and I think all of those things of having environments where the coaches cared about you, you had fun they worked with you right as opposed to kind of what I seen more now is like pressures on younger kids and from all different areas from coaches from parents and I didn’t grow up like that my dad was also my coach in high school my parents are both educators, and so they knew about the adolescent development. They knew what was appropriate for kids what was developmentally appropriate for kids and we didn’t have the pressure to play to only focus and choose one sport and I know that’s a huge battle right now. And I’m a huge I understand like wanting to choose one sport, but I’m a huge component of multi-sport, I was a multi-sport. Athletes okay that that led me kind of to develop my body in a way, on my own time, and you know I didn’t have coach I had coaches that
pushed me but not not pushed me in ways that that wasn’t OK, for me right, so they worked with me how are we getting better each year, and I think that kept me healthy and I can’t think it kept me from being burnout.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah so I’m hearing supportive environment, not a lot of pressure, you were. You know, it was supported that you were able to compete in lots of different sports not like you had to specialize in this one thing, so it allowed you to flourish and not get burnt out. So I’m thinking now you know you have this incredible opportunity to work with a lot of athletes USA track and field you’ve been involved with for several years and a lot of Olympians yourself that you work with and other high performers, what do you see them do differently from a mental standpoint, then other people?
Anne Shadle: Yeah great question. One of the things I think that I’ve noticed and observed that’s backed in research, because I like to be research, based as well, is the best performers are very clear and decisive about control and they spend their time and their energy on the things that they can control and I think athletes have this up against them even working professionals, where we do this comparison game and you know this person got this this person had this opportunity and that comparison game is pretty draining right, it takes away the things that we can control what our preparation needs to be the things that we need to do, day in and day out to improve ourselves, and so the best performers are very clear and decisive and spend their time on the things that they can control.
Cindra Kamphoff: Awesome that’s a powerful statement, right now, because I think in sport there’s a lot of things we can’t control in terms of sometimes meets are cancelled and just you know the whole last year with Kobe but even things in our daily life there’s so many things that are outside of our control and your language they’re clear and decisive about what they can control. The clear makes sense to me, what do you mean by this device or decisive?
Anne Shadle: Yeah decisive so exempt like when you were sharing what you just shared I was thinking about opportunity right so there’s been a lot of challenges, but what are those opportunities that present themselves, and I know some of the work, what with last year with the Olympics being postponed was Okay, what does this give us an opportunity to do right, what are the things that maybe we haven’t had a chance training wise mental skills training wise to dive into and so thinking about how do we use this time that that we now have as opportunities, and so I think some of that decisiveness is where do I look for opportunity. What ways do I continue to improve how do I use various resources to help me towards help me and support me towards my goals.
Cindra Kamphoff: Awesome so one of the things I really want to dive into today, and I know we could talk hours and hours about this so we’re at the beginning of the call we’re like well let’s see let’s see how far we get but you did some incredible research with other researchers about controlling the Olympic moment and I wanted to talk about the research that you did. Specifically, you know how it might impact, those who are at the Olympics, but also you know, for those of us who may or may not go to the Olympics right but are in similar sort of like a high
pressure situations, because I think there’s so much applicability to your research to us in everyday life and other performers, but let’s just get started, and maybe tell us a little bit about how you conducted the research to start?
Anne Shadle: yeah so this research was based, with the 2012 Olympic medal winners and really kind of at the beginning of that it was wanting to understand from the athlete’s perspective and a coach’s perspective, what were those specific challenges, so in the literature in general, we were able to identify what high performers do in terms of setting goals achieving goals, maintaining emotional control cognitive control. Right there’s lots of things in the research about what things athletes will face, but I wanted to know like more specifically right so injury right like we know injury often faces athletes and but how do athletes get through that and kind of back to the environment, what are these environments that actually allow people to be successful, what are those coach athlete relationships like and really wanting to understand, as we kind of dial in on a granular level of what are these stories What are his experiences what part of like a grounded theory, can we identify in terms of what’s going on with these Olympic athletes and coaches and specifically at the Olympic Games, so that was kind of the model for what we wanted to better understand and kind of dial in on.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah so you named it controlling your Olympic moment. Yes, um tell us what that means to start.
Anne Shadle: Yeah so kind of a little more about what we were looking at so using some frameworks. Right so theories and frameworks I’m going back to my research side, but I like research theories and frameworks, help us better understand and predict behavior right and so kind of the theories that we pulled into we’re looking at self-determination theory which is totally one of my favorite theories ever. They always kind of draw back on when trying to understand motivation and individuals so self-determination and it says a little bit of an education session so self-determination looks at a couple different components to for what is a self-determined person right so there’s specific needs so for an individual to be self-determined motivated do the hard things that it would take to be an Olympic medal winner and Olympic champion. Some some things are needed right, so one of those things is autonomy right so being able to voice and say and what you’re doing right, so the athlete has autonomy in that right it, they are able to like make choices, and if we think about that at the Olympic Games in the Olympic moment. You know, maybe I’ll be able to have communication with my coach if it’s a field event, but in a race right like you can’t really stop in the middle of your race so in those moments as an athlete I have to have the autonomy to make these decisions, so if we even pull that back a little further we if I kind of examine what’s going on in the sport world, a lot of times coaches are often directing and oftentimes you know we’ve got to be able to like let the athlete figure some of those things out right, so we really want to build autonomy in our athletes right so when it comes down to those final seconds in a game and there’s no timeouts left you’re at you’ve trained your athlete and you’ve given them opportunities to make decisions so when those moments happen, they know what to do right so that autonomy becomes pretty clear and these it is Olympic Games, that you know you’ve got to be very comfortable with making these decisions being able to make those choices. That will lead to those performances, so that
piece of self-determination autonomy next one is belonging. So I’m matter right, so it matters that I’m at practice it matters that I’m there what I’m doing matters kind of you have that why answered. You feel connected with your training group you you’ve got a relationship with your coach a good relationship with your coach so that the money is important right and then the last part is that competence piece. So do I have the knowledge and skills necessary and how do I build the sports skills if we’re talking specifically about the Olympic Games and controlling this Olympic moment do I have the knowledge and skills to do what I need to do, am I capable. Do I believe in myself right to be able to get done what needs to get done and so kind of those three things lay the foundation for intrinsic motivation, which is that inner driver right so it’s the strongest form of motivation it’s me pushing me it’s me going after it that doesn’t mean we’re not supported, but it means that, like I’m the driver and I’m driving myself, so the strongest form of motivation and oftentimes you know this came up in our research of well, this Olympic medal is this very extrinsic value right it’s this external hard right and so how do you relate that to these Olympic athletes that are going after these Olympic medals and really what we discovered through the research is that external extrinsic reward I guess the reward is external so there’s differences there, but we won’t go into that so that external reward of this Olympic medal right the way that the athlete internalized that was in the mastery right and how do I get better how do I continue to improve and this the Olympic medal is now is now symbolic right so as opposed to this external reward it kind of shifts that perspective if that makes sense, so these athletes were able to. That Olympic medal symbolized all of these things right it’s symbolize the perseverance is symbolized the sacrifices that symbolize their hard work so it wasn’t obviously like that’s at the end of the day that reward but that process of what that symbolizes was more powerful for them.
Cindra Kamphoff: There’s so many follow up questions I could ask you, I have your report, open and I want to read a part of it and in it Okay, you say that intrinsic motivation is the strongest most powerful and most impacting and during lasting of any of our motivational experiences and then you also described how autonomy is key in developing that and it’s experiencing the opportunity to make key important decisions for oneself about oneself and by oneself. So, two questions I have is like give us a sense of maybe between now and the Olympics, how could athletes develop that?
Anne Shadle: Yeah you know the one of the things I’ve been talking to the athletes that I work with a lot about and so some athletes, have a lot of just some worries some anxiety about where Am I at right so some athletes had the opportunity to compete last year other athletes didn’t and so, one of the things that I’ve been working with a handful of my athletes, is how do we take these early in season opportunities right So these are like data points these competitions are data points to help us direct kind of where we need to go and training, and what we need to do to get to our end goal right so. I don’t know if that if that makes a little bit of sense, but in terms of how do we, how do we use this to better inform what we’re going to do down the line right so in those decision makings right so I use an example of a long jump just because it kind of came to my mind. Right so, we know what we’re up against in a long jump right we’re going to have to we’re going to have three jumps that we’re going to have to come back for the final and get three more jumps and so, what are the ways that we know we need
to adjust ourselves on the runway right and how do we take each one of these jumps as an opportunity to prepare ourselves kind of down the line, so what, in that way do I need to learn how to adjust my body adjust my steps mentally where I need to get myself if I fall, if I’ve got a scratch, if I jump far if I don’t jump far, how do I manage all of that right, so all of those early competitions are opportunities to practice what you’re going to be up against right so If we take a running example right So what are these race tactics that I’m going to need to work on right and oftentimes if we haven’t competed for a while, sometimes we forget some of those nuances right we might fall asleep in the middle of a race or not respond right ready for those things because we haven’t done it. So just kind of using some of these earlier meets, to be able to help strengthen that decision making, so when we get to the Olympic Games, when we get to that Olympic final we’re like very comfortable with where we need to do what we need to do to respond to competition or making adjustments so that we can put up for mark.
Cindra Kamphoff: I was thinking Annie about you know how I really liked the ways that you described the three components of the self-determination theory and I was thinking about. All right, somebody who’s listening, that is a coach or who is a business leader or if they’re not in the sport and I was thinking developing your autonomy by you know, helping other people that you lead make decisions right or they have the I’m creating this motivational climate where they can make decisions on their own I’m thinking about the belonging like I matter and what I’m doing matters and how that’s important for us to feel no matter what we’re doing and then this competence do have the knowledge and skills and continuing to develop those knowledge and skills and sometimes reminding ourselves like why we have those knowledge and skills, can you can you think of any other applications to beyond sport of the just I’m even thinking this little part of the self-determination theory and what you found in your research and how that applies?
Anne Shadle: Yeah, I think, ultimately, I guess what I’ve been thinking about lately resilience, obviously, is a big piece right we like there’s a lot of research and resilience and really it kind of comes down to the individual right so and that self-determination kind of feeds to that have it kind of comes down to the individual right and there’s times that we go through adversity and hard times and question like Am I even good at what I do like should I do this I know it’s right like me like am I actually we do have those like doubts in our mind right or we go through things where we’re challenged and it kind of makes us question some of those things and so I think you know if I think about business, and I think about. You know some of the issues that that might occur in business I’m thinking about my brother-in-law and just speaking with him about his business and different things that he goes through, and ultimately it’s like what are what are my goals. How can I better help whatever that is whatever organization schools are, how do I identify my strengths right and how do I best like bring what I can do for the team to that and that kind of comes back to the individual and choice.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah that’s great there was there’s so many things in your report that we could talk about, but one of the things I want to talk with you, and then you can add anything else from the report and their research findings that you thought were helpful, but I want to read this part where you talk about athletes having a productive protective bubble to shield the
athlete from the threat of challenges, including those from maybe intended supporters like USOC officials are plans or USA track and field officials and plans or sponsors or agents or coaches or family or friends or the Olympic village, etc. Tell us why it’s really important to have a productive bulbul when you’re there?
Anne Shadle: Yeah I think um there’s a lot of things that that can distract us and there’s a lot of there’s a lot of things is when you’re in that elite level, and you know, working with professional athletes and even if I step outside of my work with some track and field athletes I’ve worked with NBA major league baseball some national women’s soccer League and I read about the pressures that are on athletes right and to be transparent, like there are people that aren’t in your corner right and athletes get her and there are a lot of you know I trusted this agent and I shouldn’t have or you know I trusted this person and I shouldn’t have and many athletes probably feel this as well, and I know athletes, even at the collegiate level has had felt this of you know I love you people love me when I’m up and just ignore me when I’m down don’t matter right and yeah really, really hard experiences psychologically if you haven’t been through that right, so I come from a from a family and an environment and I’ve been very blessed and lucky to have good people in my corner and as I’ve been more involved in sport I’ve heard not great stories right and so I’m a person that isn’t actually a trusting person I’m going to give people the benefit of the doubt and sometimes you know you get burned a little bit, so I think about various athletes who are high profile, who have you know they have a lot coming at them right there in the spotlight everyone wants a piece of them everyone kind of wants to take credit for their success, I know athletes feel that too, and again I’ve watched this with the NBA as well, of just like people just taking advantage of young vulnerable kids and those things like definitely bother me and so I think about like who are the people that are actually in your corner and care about you and love you right and who have been there for you and haven’t let you down and usually for some of these athletes it’s a very small group of people right and so having that routine having those safe people when stresses on right, we can we can imagine how stressful the Olympic Games are and having that sense of normalcy and having people that love and support you unconditionally definitely helps strengthen that resilience piece right So if I go back to research, because I like research resilience models right like one of the resilience models, a key important piece of that resilience model is social support right, yeah I mean obviously there’s tons of research and connection and support and having those feelings those positive emotions of love acceptance, especially when we go through hard times or stressful times just that social support is really important, but even more it’s like the quality of that social support is exceptionally important. The one thing I will mention from. This study and then the current city that I’m working on with that trust and it with this specific study with controlling the Olympic moment a question that was asked what was what was what is the what was the most important relationship to you and winning this Olympic medal and the number one was the coach athlete relationship so having trust in their coaches that was like having a good relationship coach That was what they shared was that was the most important relationship for them.
Cindra Kamphoff: yeah that’s helpful. What I mean your findings are so robust, so what would be another top finding that you think really would apply to the people that are listening?
Anne Shadle: The man there’s a lot there’s a lot in there you know one thing that I think stands out is like the cognitive and emotional control, right so okay about when we’re all of us are under stress and sometimes things can come at us and we can feel very overwhelmed just in general, and so, when we can take that time take that space to really slow our thinking down to kind of take that that downtime, but that yeah the cognitive emotional control, I think, is really key right so you know where is my head what am I thinking what emotions, am I experiencing and how do I, how do I, you know work through some of those things and get myself into the mindset that I need to perform and get done what my goals are right so yeah definitely there’s a lot that can come at individuals but really staying focused towards those goals kind of blocking out those distractions and being able to stay focused on what your intention is and what those goals are.
Cindra Kamphoff: So when you think about cognitive and emotional control what are your thoughts on, you know how you might teach and athlete to be able to do that you know at the Olympics, which happens, only four years this this time five years?
Anne Shadle: Right yeah, so I think a lot of a lot of that is individually based right and there’s broad things that that probably are going to face every athlete but I’m of the theory and framework that athletes know themselves, especially at this professional level and so we’ve been able to understand and, from my perspective, again once you’re at that elite level athletes, have a lot of pretty good self, awareness and so being able to have some of those conversations and work through what things have been challenges right and what things do you anticipate to be challenges because again they’ve been in high pressure situations they’ve competed for a number of years they’ve had those experiences, and so they can usually identify things that can kind of derail them destructive patterns of thinking or different doubts that come out of at various times or just even emotionally right how they might get just a little caught up emotionally sometimes about different things that might upset them or frustrations that they have right so kind of being able to work through those just kind of stayed focused on what can I do right like what do I need to do to kind of move forward towards my goals.
Cindra Kamphoff: And I’m thinking about that it’s easy to get frustrated or upset on things that you can’t control which would be, you know how what you said about being really clear on what they can control what they can’t I’m not your and your question about like what do you expect the challenge to be and then helping them identify that because that’s likely maybe going to be the thing or a thing that could get in their way of just performing at their best?
Anne Shadle: Yeah and this is why I would really love to have you know, like I get I like to get to know my athletes pretty well and then, our ups right so as the practitioner who’s helping them navigate I can bring things up to right of like okay so before this right like this, these are things with that maybe tripped you up a little bit, and so, how are we going to better plan for that right, and how do we get ahead of that and so again just really giving I guess I’m of the empowerment framework to right so right we’re going to face our challenges that’s like this is not like sport is not easy doing hard things is not easy and so, how do we better just prepare right, so if we can kind of accept that things are going to be hard there’s going to be challenges
but also kind of in the end you’ll get through it, you can do it just got to figure out a way forward right, so I guess, I guess, another conversation that I’ve had and I’ve tried to make pretty clear to the athletes that I work with is like you know I want you to call me on those days, where it’s like everything’s terrible right because and you’re going to have those moments if you’re going to train and compete for an Olympic medal and make an Olympic team like there’s going to be hard days right and you might have a day, where you freak out and you’re like I just I can’t I don’t know if I can do this right it’s like great those are great because, like, I want to be there on those days to kind of help you get through that day when you have those major doubts and you know, get you back on track to where you need to be, and then I think you know every athlete has those days in it, and if they say that they don’t have those days. Okay, I hope not, but like, from my perspective, working with athletes at an elite level for many years you’re going to have some days, where you have some of those questions and definitely Olympic year brings various stressors to Athens Greece and training for this time you’ve been training for my peers and it comes down to like moment right and the Olympic moment is different for some people right because you’ve got to make the team to get to Olympic Games and United States extremely difficult right and so there are these kind of moments of panic of like oh gosh can I actually do, it is my training, where it needs to be are all these things you know is everything lined up can actually do this it’s a great guess what we’re going to get through those days were to have conversations and then we’re going to get you back on track, because one of the things of being high being high performers right and having high goals and having high aspirations and having that high achievement striving, is that leaves us vulnerable to failure right and right we think like everything’s great like it’s great to have these high goals high aspirations, we really value that, but the vulnerability of that is when things don’t go our way right and we have these absolutely that holds people back, but you know part of the jam of having these high goals and having had those high aspirations is when we don’t make when we don’t achieve that right and for me. In my career, I had a mentor that said to me very strongly one day of like can’t be afraid of the days that we fail Annie and I was like whoa Okay, and I was like you’re right like we can and pretty firmly it was like those were the days we learned the most right and not be afraid of the days that we fail because those are the days we learned the most okay right, but I think I think one of the things that we overlook is the price the vulnerability of having high goals is that we might be disappointed because we might not achieve those expectations and that’s okay right and we just keep moving forward.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah that’s awesome a couple of things I heard you just say any you know first like the moments of panic when you’re training for the Olympics and how that’s normal and natural and I thought that was just like powerful you know just that it maybe when it happens, then you realize that you’re not alone and there was one question that I was going to ask you, at the beginning, but we just kind of dove into your findings, but I asked a lot of people on the podcast you know what, what is your, what is your definition of failure and what does it mean to you and it’s really interesting because there’s a wide variety of responses, but I thought you just said something really That was a gem. Those days that we may be fail, are the days that we really learn the most you know, and then to not discount vulnerability when you’re going after high goals and especially when there’s high goals that maybe we’ve put out there we’ve said out loud, you know, trying to make the Olympic team or I’m thinking about for
me. I have a goal this year impact positively impacting a million people like that’s a really high goal and you know, sometimes I’m like even say it I’m like yeah right, um but you know I guess what would you say in terms of if you’re working with an athlete or performer that really is vulnerable and maybe has shared their goals what advice might you give to them about this kind of the vulnerability piece of going after a high goal?
Anne Shadle: Yeah I think if I even usually where I go with that is like who do you want to be right, like this is this is like your either your choices, who do you want to be like what do you want to do with your life right so kind of back to that value based, and I know for myself it’s like you know I have high goals, I think I always have my mom said to me one time, like I just don’t understand why you like to do such hard things it was like I can’t really tell you, but you know she sees that the other side when I when I don’t achieve what I want to achieve and then that is upsetting to me right, and so parents don’t like to see their kids kind of suffer move through that but, that’s kind of that’s kind of that, but I would, I guess, I would say in terms of helping someone through that it’s like who do you want to be right like we do and I think that you know for myself in terms of like wanting to set high goals and wanting to achieve big things you know when it doesn’t go my way like for sure I like feel upset and feel sad for a while and what’s always what’s been interesting to me and my own personal life is like mentally I can understand right like I understand like guess, this was a hard day yes um you know I didn’t achieve what I wanted to achieve or you know, yes, I did learn a lot but emotionally is like where I get caught right so like cognitively I’m like yeah I get it yep I know I need to move forward Okay, this was an area where I need to get better right and I, and I know where I want to improve and how I want to improve but emotionally like impacts me right so kind of moving through the emotion of what those failures do becomes a little bit more challenging right.\
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah I really like I don’t know if you’ve read Susan David’s book called emotional agility?
Anne Shadle: Oh yes.
Cindra Kamphoff: I love her book, where she talks about being flexible and just not getting stuck in those difficult emotions and that’s kind of what I think about to myself when I’m struggling with something it’s like Okay, you know I can feel what I need to feel right now, but you know I also try not to get stuck too long what do you do when you’re kind of feeling the emotional difficulty when maybe you don’t achieve that goal and I’m thinking about cashing just you as a high level athlete but also as a professional now?
Anne Shadle: yeah I think it’s great and I love I love Dr David’s work for sure um and, for me, I think I’m a pretty you know, like I kind of said the cognitive and emotional side right so yeah maybe I can think through things and then emotionally, you know can get stuck sometimes, but I also know when I work through the emotion it definitely shows me like what I care most about right. If I you know we take you know, setting a high goal right so like Olympic Games or even just something even we’re striving towards in our in our personal life and we fall short kind of the emotion that comes with that, but then kind of working through that emotion to figure out
like okay like where Do I need to get better what do I want to do what am I actually really passionate about and how do I, you know move forward, then with like what learning I’ve taken from this and I think I think for myself I kind of yeah this has kind of been a recent I guess thing to like really having stirring talking to myself right and it’s not like a negative self-talk, but it’s just like stern talking to right, if you think about you know when we go through hard times the way that we can like give pep talks other people, or we can support our best friend or you know help encourage and share with the people that that we’re helping are working with you know another perspective right is to kind of be able to do that to myself and I still love to run running is kind of my therapy like I love that and so, if I’m working through a problem or kind of feeling emotionally stuck it’s like being able to go for a long run, and just kind of work through that emotion and have a stern talking to right like what are your goals okay well you know things aren’t going to be easy you’re know you’re going to like go through hard times and you know how do you stay on track with that right, and how do you who can you talk to that can help you answer this problem or answer this question and just kind of have those stern talking to myself of reminding myself of my value and kind of my goals and where I’m going in my life and all of those things so that’s a yes that’s how I get myself unstuck.
Cindra Kamphoff: Wonderful um you know Annie when you think about just working with high level performers about mindset, what do you hear yourself saying over and over again?
Anne Shadle: kind of what I was just kind of sharing there is like I think two and, though, if we’re coming back to like controlling the Olympic moment, like you, are going to be with yourself on the start line or on the runway or in the ring right on the basketball court where whatever that performance domain is in front doing a presentation and it’s like you versus you right, and so you and you better be on the same page for sure right, and so, if you think about that just having that being able to like coach yourself through those tough moments, and I think that’s a skill that absolutely everyone can work on right so really kind of digging deep within ourselves and doing what we wouldn’t actually do for the people that we love most being able to like talk ourselves through those difficult those difficult or challenging times.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah you versus you and you got to make sure you’re on the same page and and and being able to coach yourself, I was Danny this week I did a face to face workshop, and I was so excited that it was face to face it was like oh so wonderful to be face to face again, but we were talking about, it was with business leaders and executives and we were talking about this word potential and it’s really interesting right because I guess to me when I think of potential is you know it’s unlimited it’s endless like do we ever really reach our potential, you know it seems like once we feel like we reached it we actually see that we have more and, and then I had them consider you know what gets in the way of potential, and it was really cool because you know, there is this like silence and it was like well I do and it makes me kind of think about what you just said it’s like you versus you and being able to be on the same page and coaching yourself and now we’re the most difficult person to coach you know it’s a lot easier and they may be coach other people, but it can be really difficult to coach ourselves, especially in a moment that feels like a lot of pressure or can feel like a lot of pressure.
Anne Shadle: For sure.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah yeah, so Annie before we wrap up, can you tell us about maybe a unique way that you teach mindset or the mental game, and I know we’ve talked about a lot already, so there is there anything that you’re thinking about related to that?
Anne Shadle: Yeah interesting that’s a good question um and I don’t I think I like I’m pretty adaptable, and so it kind of depends on the person right, so if I’m working in a group it kind of depends on what’s going on there um I think you know kind of whatever I’m whatever I don’t know that’s not a good way to say it, but i’m like whatever feels right right, but you can have that intuition if like Okay, yes, go over really well this is going to resonate with this group of people Okay, or this person right and so kind of following my gut, and this is, I think, where I have like a pretty good toolbox of teaching and so I kind of go to that, depending on like which group of people I’m targeting and working with or the individual person. So I think that’s been important for me of just that adaptability and being able to like share different stories or use different teaching methods to work with an individual person.
Cindra Kamphoff: Yeah that’s excellent is there anything that you wanted to share with us that I haven’t asked you today, and I know there’s a lot of things you could share, but just curious if there’s anything top of mind that’s like Oh, I wish I would have asked me that question?
Anne Shadle: Question to I yeah I think we covered a lot of really good stuff it’s been really fun to kind of chat and talk and I’m sure we have a lot more lot talk about.
Cindra Kamphoff: We can talk about absolutely so here’s what I got from the conversation, as I kind of summarize and wrap up. I really like at the beginning, when you were talking about you know the things that really differentiates high level athletes and you said being clear and decisive of what they can control and just avoiding the comparison game, and you shared with us how we can do that, we talked a little bit about the self-determination theory and how your findings of the year 2012 Olympians are you know, really helped us understand autonomy and belonging and competence and then we talked about having a strong coach athlete relationship I’m thinking in the workplace that’s like strong employee boss, maybe even a relationship, you know that we can apply that way, having cognitive and emotional control is really important, and then this moment of panic and how that’s normal for Olympians.
Anne Shadle: And then professionals right like Olympian yeah channels right we have these moments of Oh, I have this huge presentation and oh my gosh is doing and make sense anyone like is this going to fit like what they want right, so our boss wants this PowerPoint presentation tomorrow. So kind of those moments of panic of like trust yourself just like slow yourself down right.
Cindra Kamphoff: Awesome. Yeah love it love it and then we’re talking about vulnerability going after hard goals and how what you said at the at the at the end there about taking a step back and realizing when you’re disappointed, but this is, you know, to show you kind of information
about what you really care about and really thinking about what did you learn so Andy How can people reach out to you if they want to learn more about your work, your research.Tell us how we can get you?
Anne Shadle: The best way is just email me, so my email is Anneshadle@gmail.com. I’m not I’m not the greatest at social media, but if anyone, you know, wants to do that, for me, or has ideas, let me know for sure.
Cindra Kamphoff: Awesome and I’m so grateful that you spend some time with us today, so thank you so much for joining us here on the podcast.
Anne Shadle: Thanks so much for having me.