"Body Mind Sport Art" these four words are not usually associated with each other. However I want to share a book I'm reading currently and how it correlates with those words and the painting experience. The book, Body, Mind, and Sport written by John Douillard is a captivating exploration of the profound connection between the human mind and body in the context of athletic performance. Written by an author who is clearly passionate about both sports and psychology, this book provides a comprehensive and insightful look into the world of peak performance and the mental strategies that can elevate an athlete's game.
The book is divided into well-structured chapters, each delving into a specific aspect of the mind-body connection and its impact on sports. From the psychology of motivation and goal-setting to the power of visualization and mindfulness techniques, the author covers a wide range of topics, making this book a valuable resource for athletes, coaches, and anyone interested in harnessing their full potential.
So why does this interest me as an artist?
What caught my attention is the way he discusses how to harness the body's peak performance. He describes it as being in an effortless state where the mind and body are in a perfect state of flow, and that when you reach this state, your performance continues to effortlessly improve over time. Not only that, he goes against all the traditional methods of pushing through and punishing your body to get it to operate at the next level.
He describes the state as akin to that of meditation, where you work with breath and mindfulness and your own body type. The fascinating thing to me is that for a few years now, when I paint, I endeavour to attain a very similar state. With breath work and a mindful focus, I approach the canvas in a similar way to the one he is describing. When I am in 'the flow' the mind takes a back seat and the body performs the actions required effortlessly. Each brush stroke is handed over to intuition and a partnership with the universe at the quantum level.
My greatest moments of success arise from this place. Many athletes maintain that you cannot control this 'being in the flow' process, however John Douillard and I are in agreement on the fact that it is entirely possible to achieve this state if you put the correct practices into place. Of course this takes training and self discipline.
A further concept that he introduces in the book, is that of having a certain body type which he labels as Autumn/Winter, Spring and Summer. He shares how to determine this and further reveals the types of exercise and best times to exercise according to your seasonal type. I found this very useful as I normally am not known for my love of exercise - at all - like I try and avoid it whenever possible LOL!
Overall, "Mind Body Sport" is a valuable addition to not only sports psychology and performance enhancement but to anyone's bookshelf who wants to work more harmoniously with their own body, regardless of whether they are an athlete or not. It not only provides a solid foundation of
knowledge but also encourages readers to actively engage with the material through exercises and reflection. This book offers valuable insights and practical tools to help you achieve your goals.
With its combination of science, practical advice, and inspirational stories, "Mind Body Sport" is a must-read for anyone striving to reach their peak performance in sports and beyond.