In this video below, Craig teaches the most powerful key to opening the door to your hidden natural confidence. Confidence is a thought that something can be accomplished. Craig reminds athletes that you have to clear the mental baggage patterns that prevent athletes in maximizing their confidence thus, athletes should clear underlying limiting/ destructive beliefs at the power (subconscious) level of the mind. You will find out that a simple belief acts like a virus in a computer and before you know it, your files are all gone.

I’ve written and taught athletes and teams a lot about how to gain confidence in sports on this blog.  In this article, I’m going to give you the key to unlocking your ability to improve it, but let’s start with a basic Dictionary definition:


1.full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing:
“We have every confidence in their ability to succeed.”
2.belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance:
“His lack of confidence defeated him.”
3.certitude; assurance:
“He described the situation with such confidence that the audience believed him completely.”

In short, I would paraphrase all of that to say: Confidence is a thought that something CAN be accomplished.

Now, before I go on, in a previous post about confidence building, I outlined for you that the best foundation for building self confidence is in understanding that you don’t NEED confidence to achieve anything! It’s nice and it’s helpful and so with that said, the first thing you need to do if you want more confidence is to clear the mental baggage patterns that prevent it.

In other words, you can tell yourself all day long that you’re a winner and that you have the abilities and that you “believe in yourself” etc., but if you have conflicting thoughts about that, it’s like being in a motor boat with the anchor out and dragging the bottom.
Or, it’s like pushing the gas pedal in a car while your other foot is on the brakes at the same time.

So here is the biggest key to unlocking your hidden natural confidence:

Clear underlying limiting/destructive beliefs at the power (subconscious) level of the mind.

Here’s an example of a destructive belief that destroys confidence building:  I once worked with a Dad and his 14 year old boy who played hockey.  The Dad had played professional hockey at a high level and was truly hoping his son would follow in his footsteps.   Dad was a big supporter as evidenced by bringing his son to see me for his mental game. (As all you parents and coaches should be praised for by even reading this!).

In my first sessions with young athletes, I have the child and parent answering my questions with my intention to get them to interact in front of me. This helps me figure out the problem and design the fix.  This father and son were close and I could tell that they genuinely liked each other.   Once they got comfortable, the conversation was light and in a joking spirit and I heard the father say this:

“You’ll never be as good as me”

The father thought this would fire his son up to prove him wrong and so he kept goading him with phrases like this.  This is what worked for the father when a coach told him at an early age that he would never make it as a hockey player.  Unfortunately, as I began to work with the son, it became clear to me that the son had created a belief that he would never be as good as his father.  What happens, in reality, when such a limiting belief is present, is that right when the athlete gets ready to perform at a critical time, the power mind kicks in with feelings of inadequacy (no confidence) and of course, you’ve seen the poor performance results of that on the court or field.

All from a simple belief that acts like a virus in a computer.

There are all sorts of beliefs, or bio-programs if you will, that get in the way of creating confidence.  Probably the most common ones that I deal with is:

“I’m not good enough”
“I don’t belong at this level”
“Uh, oh, I’m not feeling confident so I won’t play well.”

How do these destructive beliefs get embedded in the athlete’s mind?

You would be shocked to learn how even minor events in a person’s life can create huge blocks to achievement that stay with them a long time.
It could be as simple as a coach pulling an athlete out of the game or not starting him/her one game for strategic reasons.  It could happen from mean words from a teammate, even if it was meant as a joke.  The most common time when lifelong beliefs are formed are when a person is in high emotion. Whatever we think in the midst of that emotion is likely to become a belief, good or bad, useful or not useful.

This means that when an athlete has a poor performance and you can tell they are in a difficult emotion about it, this is the time to give them simple statements of encouragement,not to tell them what they did wrong.

Here’s some examples to create beliefs that DO create beliefs that increase confidence:

I know you feel bad about your game, but I still say you are a D1 player.

Things didn’t go so well today but you were brilliant when you ________, that’s clearly a strength you have.

That was a tough loss and what you learn from it will only make you smarter and better from this day on.

These kinds of statements are confidence builders and you especially want to use these for others or yourself when events in life don’t go the way you want them to.  It’s easy to feel confident after you win or do well, so you will need to prepare, in advance to create strong beliefs about yourself when you don’t.  The key is to have your statements and thoughts ready for when that eventually happens. Rehearse it beforehand.

Winners win in advance

…through physical and mental preparation.

Let’s do this,

Craig Sigl
Mental Toughness Trainer