So what accounts for the so-called genius in people, and does everyone have it? Why are some people brilliant at certain things while others can only dream of acquiring the same skills, ability or art. Is it that we (humans) are destined to find our purpose and genius, whatever it is? If so, where do we look? Nick Bottini is a multi-instrumentalist, consultant and performance coach. During this podcast show, Nick and Denise explore all levels of human performance from beginners through to what looks like being super-human. The design behind the human operating system is the same for all of us; we all breath, our hearts beat, our bodies age, and we all learn and explore from the second we are born. Many people, however, do not realise their potential, and under-achieve. They accept mediocrity due to limiting beliefs around what's possible for them living these physical bodies.
A full-length feature show, with Andy Winter, Denise Holland and contributions from special guests Barbara Jorden, and Declan Stout. A conversation which demystifies the so-called, 'Performance Zone' state that a performer experiences when there appears to be no separation between themselves and anything or anyone else, a pure connection to the energy and intelligence behind all nature (life). Psychological freedom, it turns out, is simpler than you think and is not something you attain through experience or knowledge. Sportspeople cannot look to the intellect and concepts to understand that which is formless, and some might say, Divine, it doesn't make sense? To get the best out of this show, Denise invites you to listen beyond the words, like you would a piece of music, soak up what the speakers are pointing to, leave your personal beliefs to the side just for an hour and see what you hear? This understanding offers another dimension to sports coaching, which has an incredible impact on people's lives and results.
So what is this new understanding that has elite athletes head in an entirely new direction of, performing from a place of enjoyment, love, and exploration, rather than the chasing and deliberate endeavour of needing to believe in yourself, setting goals, and being confident? And how do you teach it? Andy Winter and Denise look to the source and nature of all human activity and "the excitement of knowing that at any moment and that at all moments the wisdom of life is flowing through me and expressing itself, that is unavoidable". What if the next evolution in sport is more about tuning in with that which you are as a spiritual being, rather than that which you can become?
We wouldn't dream to control the shape of the waves, so how is it we think we can dictate human performances which is another act of nature? What's possible for athletes when they get to that place of openly expressing rather than needing to control, or exploring instead of achieving? What if, sportspeople could see what's behind what they see in people?
Andy Winter, shares experiences of his daughter watching Rafael Nadal, at the US Open in 2017. She noticed, that, "he's not having fun anymore". What makes Elite Athletes enjoy their performances? Some would say that "winning makes you happy", but we know that's not true. Magic Johnson, wowed the global stage in basketball, what's behind this so-called X Factor? What is it that if we open up to it, we get to play freely, and impersonally?
Human beings have practised movements and making decisions before we have too much thought, for thousands of years. "Grace is the gift of being human; we are the spontaneous interaction with the moment were in". When you're playing from this your true nature, the feedback is different; it's more productive and more immediate.
Andy Winter and Denise Holland, both sports professionals, for over twenty years, share how their sports coaching has changed since coming across this understanding of, how the human mind works to create experience. What happens to athletes and coaches, when they let go of the contents of their conditioning and fall into the Grace of pure Being? Beyond the linear perspective of living life, the chronological of time, and the continuum of memory and projection, there is a stillness, a Divine Universal Intelligence, a supreme creative presence. When human beings are aligned with this essence, they re-connect with their true Self, rather than live from the conditioned self; concepts, judgments and assumptions. Performing from this space of peace and pure joy is the ultimate leveraging point for sportspeople.
Andy Winter has been an Educator, Administrator, and Coach for over thirty years. He encountered Dicken Bettinger and Sydney Banks twenty-five years ago, and his life and his work changed dramatically. Since then he has worked with adults, children, couples, schools, athletes and teams to help them better understand their innate health, and wisdom, and live work and play with greater joy.
Andy is the Director of the Center for Insight and Change in Brattleboro, Vermont - where he works sharing the principles behind the human experience. He also continues his practice as a Tennis Pro.
A unique style we could call performance meditation, Denise takes you to the spaciousness before the creation of memory, your true nature/Self, that place of pure creative potential – of BEING rather than proving, striving or even competing. As human beings, memory logs experience through the lens/perspective at the time; it is part of the design to support the individual expression of the one Divine life force. Are we, however, misusing this function of the human mind? When we recall, it can never be the previous moment that we are remembering, it can only ever be today's take on it?
Are you giving your memories far too much importance and significance? Is this misunderstanding sabotaging your capacity for psychological and performance freedom? If you woke up with no memory whatsoever, just the divine inspiration to live utterly present to the moment, how would your day go? Imagine, showing up for competitions, without any ideas of consequences, medals, or mistakes, just a deep connection to that which has evolved humanity for hundreds of years, and which brought you here, that which can be trusted to fuel, and deliver a performance perfect for you at that time?
The human memory system, a brilliant part of the human mind (not brain), continues to the subject of scientific research to find clues as to why people behave the way they do but are we looking in the wrong direction. What is the memory, and as a function is it any different to imagination, discernment, judgement or appreciation? Do we give that which we hold in our minds too much importance and significance? Can it be trusted to provide us with an accurate account of what happened? How is it that humans have this capacity to forget, move on, get over things? Is it conceivable that human beings are not supposed to remember, to operate optimally in the now, present to each moment, ready to be intuitive and instinctive for the greater good?
Joe Marler Professional Rugby player was recently shown a red card during a Harlequins Premiership match, which left him unavailable for national selection. When hormones go crazy in the heat of the moment, how helpful is it for coaches to know what’s happening inside the human body and mind? There is an enormous benefit to coaches of elite athletes, to get ‘buy-in’, rather than ‘compliance’. Some coaching approaches appear too inflexible and rigid whereas a Super Coach would be someone who has a profound understanding of the role of the human mind to create experience. They see beyond the traditional methodology to regulate behaviours to the source, and intelligence of all human performances, positive and negative. Super Coaches are better equipped to gain overall buy-in and help athletes work within the broader goal of the team and the rules of the game.
Michael Neill shares the distinction between setting goals as a course of direction, to inform your work together rather than something to put pressure on yourself, with consequences for non-achievement. Athletes perform at their best when they are not conscious of themselves – anything that makes you self-conscious works against high performance. Denise asks Michael to talk about the question of 'controlling outcome', do athletes even have the capacity to control the outcome of human accomplishments and how helpful is it to believe they can or cannot?
Michael Neill talks with Denise Holland about 'pressure'? How is it sportspeople often comment that they need to feel under pressure to be able to perform well? What's going on with this perspective and is it healthy? Is feeling under pressure helpful to athletes? What happens to the physical body and mind when human beings continuously feel under attack, threatened, or frightened? In contrast, is there an optimal state of mind and body for sustainable high performance? Often we witness sparks of genius appear out of no-where and in many cases when the chips are down, what's behind this human phenomenon? Is it true that 'pressure' is an inside job, that circumstances, people and situations can never be the cause of feeling under pressure? If so, this is well worth investigating further, don't you think, nothing and no-one to blame for your experiences!
Denise Holland talks with Michael Neill about match point situations, in the heat of the moment, when it is highly likely that athletes get caught up in a lot of thinking, how helpful is this 'Understanding of the Mind? Also on this show, Michael shares his wisdom about ‘Talent Identification and Development’ – How useful is it to focus on traditional attributes and characteristics, i.e., self-determination, self-preservation, being self-absorbed, a win at all cost mindset? Are you missing one vital core ingredient of all human performance; ‘Love of the Game’, the inspiration to live, breath, and sleep your sport, an unconditional drive to explore new ways to go further? What's behind athlete's motivation and is that worth the investment?
Special guest Michael Neill, an internally renowned transformative coach and the best-selling author of six books including, The Inside Out Revolution and, The Space Within, explains the inspiration behind writing his new book, Creating The Impossible. “It’s easier for people to create what they actually want than what they think they can get – it brings something different out of them”. “It’s a call to go beyond yourself, to go beyond what you think you are capable of, to live from a deeper part of yourself and there is nothing more exciting for people than when they tap into that and start to live from it”. Understanding how the mind works helps to explain great performance which shares certain characteristics; the most common is the feeling of, being lived, being the vehicle for performance not the cause of it, in the flow state.