The first step for me was not a healthy one. Toward the end of 2015, I had my gallbladder removed and I was battling kidney stones as well as ruptured ovarian cysts. I was in so much pain that I physically could not bring myself to eat or I would get sick. I spent two weeks in the hospital because I had dropped 60 pounds in two months. They wanted to put a feeding tube in me, but I had to fight it and essentially relearn to eat as well as exercise to regain all the muscle I had lost from being sick.
Self-talk refers to the thoughts and words athletes and performers say to themselves, usually in their minds. Self-talk phrases (or cues) are used to direct attention towards a particular thing in order to improve focus or are used alongside other techniques to facilitate their effectiveness. For example, a softball player may think "release point" when at bat to direct her attention to the point where the pitcher releases the ball, while a golfer may say "smooth stroke" before putting to stay relaxed. Research suggests either positive or negative self-talk may improve performance, suggesting the effectiveness of self-talk phrases depends on how the phrase is interpreted by the individual. However, the use of positive self-talk is considered to be more efficacious and is consistent with the associative network theory of Gordon Bower and the self-efficacy tenet within the broader Social Cognitive Theory of Albert Bandura. The use of words in sport has been widely utilized. The ability to bombard the unconscious mind with one single positive phrase, is one of the most effective and easy to use psychological skills available to any athlete.