Tips From My MentorNote: I am competing this weekend! Follow the Eva Bakes Facebook page for photos and updates!
My skating mentor checked in on me not too long ago to see how I was doing. I was having a horrible skating week. I couldn't land anything. Simple jumps were wobbly, and my body just couldn't get organized to do anything right. I had some pretty bad falls all week. Even the skating director came up to me to see if I was OK and told me to be careful.
So when my mentor asked me how things were going, I told her that it had been a frustrating week. I was keeping my skating log and couldn't seem to do anything correctly. I knew what I needed to do physically and mentally, but things just weren't clicking.
Here's what she said to me:
I think you're being TOO hard on yourself! If you're keeping a log of all your programs, that's great, but make sure it's all positive. If you're constantly being reminded of what you lack and what needs to be better, then that's all you will think about. Now all of a sudden you're putting all this pressure on yourself to skate perfect programs in PRACTICE. Allow yourself to make errors in practice. That's why it's there.
I'm the queen of putting pressure on myself. But over time I've found that the more pressure there is, the worse things are. It takes the joy away. Remember why you do this! Because you love it.
Spoken like a true champion. I keep logs so I know what I need to improve and to train my body to get the correct movements into muscle memory. But she's right - I should be focusing on the positive so I can change my mindset. Happy thoughts will get me further in life (and on the ice) than negative ones.
And yes, I skate because I love it. It gives me the freedom away from worries, obligations and stress. It's not for medals or glory. It's just for me.
What words of wisdom have you received that have helped you in your life or in your skating journey?