#WorkSmarter – Pre-game Rituals & Superstitions

By | January 6, 2017

Tiger and his red shirt, Lebron lobbing chalk into the air, Rafa Nadal and his water bottles and Seb Vettel and his lucky coin in his F1 shoe – all quirky ‘pre-game’ rituals of athletes who at one point were unquestionably the best in the world at their chosen sport.

There is a reason the best professional athletes have pre-game rituals and superstitions.  They work.

Why do they work?  Firstly, let’s be realistic.  It’s not magic, voodoo or karma.  There, I said it.  It’s about the benefit of the mental preparation and mindset elevation gained by ritualistically doing something that triggers a state of preparedness (or something like that).

For me, I do a couple of things that are pre-game when I am engaging in certain business activities (such as meeting prospective clients for the first time or late-stage interviewing potential new hires).  One of them is a little bit odd and is my own little secret so I’ll keep it to myself.  The other is not at all secret – I carry a pack of multi-colored pens with me.  Even now, despite using a Microsoft Surface Book in meetings as an aide-memoire and note taking device – I still have a pack of multi-colored pens with me, it’s my ritual.

Off into the sidebar with an odd as hell fact:  When I got married in 2011, I performed my secret pre-game ritual and I carried a pack of colored pens with me (in my inside pocket of my frock coat, no less) as I feel so strongly that it was necessary to ensure all my mental ju-ju was in place and guess what?  All went well.



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