177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class

One of the greatest discoveries I’ve made in the last two decades as a mental toughness coach is the realization that world-class performers are driven by positive expectations. In other words, the great ones always expect to win regardless of what they are up against. The next discovery I made was that this same positive expectation could be installed in anyone who wished to possess it. It’s a programming process that is easy to do; all it takes is desire and persistence. Champions begin this programming process by creating the language they use when they talk to themselves, as well as the pictures they visualize. World-class performers literally talk themselves into believing anything that gives them a mental edge.

Call it positive brainwashing, programming, affirmation training, auto-suggestion – whatever label you choose. Champions call it their ace in the hole. While most amateur performers rely on positive experience to build positive expectation, professional performers are superstars in their minds long before they are superstars in reality. Why wait for Mother Nature to produce snow at a ski resort when it can be artificially produced right now? Then, when it does snow, it simply adds a powder to a very solid base. Expectation works whether it’s built from real experience or programming. The advantage of programming is it is guaranteed to happen while experience may or may not occur.


Outline your expectations in every area of your life, and then ask the ultimate critical thinking question: “Should I expect more?” If your answer is yes, raise your expectations and upgrade how you talk to yourself and others about your heightened aspirations.

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Quotes from: Steve Siebold, 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class (Hong Kong: London House, 2005), page 56.

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