Your Inner Athlete: Ask & You Shall Receive

Your Inner Athlete: Ask & You Shall Receive

Dr. Haley Perlus continues with tips about ways to empower “Your Inner Athlete.” This week, Haley talks about how six little questions can help you achieve peak results. In your sport. In life.

Haley Perlus

We have all heard that the best way to get results is to ignore the results while you’re performing. In order to perform your best, you must pay attention to technique, tactics, and effort. When you can do this, results come.

As much as I agree with the theory behind that strategy, as a consultant to many individual athletes and teams, and with my experience as an athlete, coach, and doctor of sport psychology, I know it is extremely difficult to completely tune out all the thoughts regarding the scoreboard.

For many, competition is what makes sport, fitness, and business exciting.

Competition motivates us to exert every ounce of effort we have to perform at our best. For this reason, I propose a way for athletes to embrace their competitive instinct while staying committed to the tactics and technique required for peak results.

Here are six performance-enhancing questions you can break up into a two-step process.

Step 1: Before competition, during your warm-up, inspection, pre-race meal, etc., ask yourself two questions: (1) Where can I gain a competitive advantage?; and (2) How can I successfully move through my challenges?

The first question prompts you to highlight your strengths and focus on how to use them to gain an advantage over the competition. The second question works to replace any fears or doubts with challenges you can overcome using your focus on tactics and/or technique. Together, this self-talk utilizes your competitive nature to promote a process-oriented focus.

Step 2: After competition, assess your performance with these four questions: (3) Was my result comparable or better than in training?; (4) Did I execute the tactics and/or technique I set out to perform today? ;(5) What did I achieve today (i.e. technical, tactical, and/or effort)?; (6) What can I do next time to be better than I was today (i.e. technical, tactical or effort)?

The questions above allow you to keep a proper perspective of the scoreboard by focusing on all the things you can control. When you have a good result, by answering these questions, you’ll be able to not only celebrate your success, but also to identify the specific behaviors you exerted leading to the great results. Conversely, when you have a poor result, the questions will help you to be constructive so that you can improve next time.

When you ask the right questions, you get the best answers. For your next competition, ask yourself the first two questions in your pre-competition routine. Then, ask yourself the next four questions in your post-competition routine.

Allow your competiveness to fuel your ability to focus on the tactics and technique that will earn you a personal best result.

Game on…

About Dr. Haley Perlus:

The event wears its name like a glove: “WOW.”  The acronym is a perfect fit for Becca Tudor’s awesome Weekend of Wellness, relatively new festival (the 3rd annual gathering took place in early June 2015) that celebrates overall fitness, including ways grow a spine, man up –  yoga, kettle bell, Pilates, cycling, kids’ classes – and also get educated about health trends in general through lectures by doctors, nutritionists, and renowned experts in the field of sports psychology. Experts such as Dr. Haley Perlus, a stand-out on a long list of superstar women featured at Telluride WOW, already a no-miss event if you are on a path towards personal transformation.


I attended Haley’s lecture about the psychology behind good nutrition and overall health. The holistic contents turned out to be a back door to ways to live a healthy life in general. We were all left wanting more from this buff, blonde brainiac, so Telluride Inside… and Out invited Haley to blog on our site. And lucky for us all, Haley agreed. 

BIO: With a Ph.D. in Sport and Exercise Psychology, M.S. in Sport Pedagogy, and numerous fitness and coaching certifications, Dr. Perlus is an expert at empowering athletes of all types and health enthusiasts achieve peak results. An adjunct professor at the University of Colorado, international speaker, former Alpine ski racer, appointed Industry Leader for, and author, including soon-to-be-released “The One Minute Diet and Guidebook to Gold.”

Dr. Perlus helps people reach their highest standard of performance. For further information and a free chapter of one of her books, visit  

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