I’m getting ready for the not-so-world-famous Englewood Sprint Triathlon. You can see the competitors lining up behind me and where the swim happens.
It’s very calm this morning, but still, the swim starts can be kinda tumultuous; there are a lot of people. You can get kicked or your goggles might get knocked off, so I have to rev myself up.
I could say “I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.”, but It’s actually a better strategy to say “David, you can do it. You can do it. You can do it”.
When you talk about yourself in the third person, it’s more dispassionate, you’re more objective and you stay in a cooler head. That cooler head is going to serve me better if something happens: like if someone kicks me and my goggles fill up with water. I’ll stay cool, calm and collected.
Studies show that task performance is better when we stay in a cooler head.
So, the next time you need to rev yourself up, don’t say “I can do it. I can do it. I can do it.”, say “David can do it. David can do it. David can do it.”, or use your name… That might be better.