“A watched pot never boils.” Or does it? Have you tried? It feels like it takes forever if you watch it. In actuality, whether you watch it or not has no effect on how fast the water takes to boils—you can’t make it boil faster by wanting it more.
So now, you ask, how will watching water boil make me a better athlete? Watching a pot of water boil trains your willpower. You train your willpower the same way you would train any other part of your body. Your brain makes physical changes through the power of meditation and mindfulness training.
Wait, meditation? Isn’t that some spiritual or religious thing? Yes, but that’s not all it is. The practice of meditation teaches your mind to focus on specific and targeted thoughts. Being able to do this helps block out all of the things that take you away from your goals. The hard part about meditation is that it requires you to sit still for specific amount of time— but while it is hard, it is also the reason why meditation is a useful took for athletes — it trains the mind to adapt.
Watching water boil in a pot is simply a form of mindfulness training that is similar to meditation without having to sit crosslegged or chant mantras. I know this sounds silly, but just as squats make your body physically stronger, meditation and mindfulness training strengthens your willpower!
Meditation Training Exercise
For the next 30 days, complete the following meditation exercise:
Step 1: Get a small pot and put some water in it.
Step 2: Put it on the stove and turn it up to high.
Step 3: Stare at the water until you see a rolling boil.
Do the same pot of water for seven consecutive days. After that, get a bigger pot and add more water. It is like training the body gradually to increase the load to work the muscle to get stronger.
*Don’t move your eyes from the water no matter what else is going on around you.
*Don’t worry if your mind wanders.
The first few times you complete this training, you might experience anxiety or stress waiting for the water to boil. This will pass as your willpower improves.
This meditation training will slowly build your willpower up over time. It is amazing to see what sorts of things you think of when you are forced into a structured —and seemingly boring — situation.
Mental training is a critical part of all competitive athletes’ training program. Improve your mental game with the techniques and tactics employed by the elite coaches at Velocity Sports Performance.