Anyone who’s played competitive sports knows that the mental game is at least as important as the physical one. My guest this week is clinical and sport psychologist Dr. Mitch Greene, who specializes in helping athletes manage doubts, cultivate courage, improve performance, and reach their goals.
Mitch and I talked about several key issues in sport psychology, including:
- How mind games get in the way of a person’s goals
- Dealing with “mind chatter”
- Making peace with self doubt
- Real versus pseudo-confidence
- Therapists’ own mind chatter
- Applicability of sport psychology principles to other areas, like academics
- How to bring one’s focus to the game
- The impossibility of directly controlling sports outcomes
- Process versus outcome goals
- The challenge of holding a lead
- Dealing with performance anxiety
- The influence of parents’ behavior
- Paths to becoming a sport psychologist
- Dealing with fears
- Getting out of our comfort zones
Mitch mentioned the Association for Applied Sport Psychology; check out their website.
Dr. Mitchell Greene completed his undergraduate degree at Boston College and his PhD in clinical psychology at Temple University. He works primarily with athletes pursuing high performance goals, as well as coaches and athletic departments looking to educate their student-athletes on mental health and performance enhancement strategies.
Mitch’s typical clients are either college (or college-bound) student-athletes or elite/pro-level competitors; he also provides workshops for teams and coaches. Mitch’s areas of expertise include helping competitors with lapses in confidence, mental setbacks from injury, performance anxiety worries, and peak performance preparation.
In addition to his own practice, Mitch is an Adjunct Instructor in Temple University’s College of Public Health, a contributing columnist for USA Triathlon, and the sport psychology consultant to several athletic departments, endurance coaches and national race series. His articles, book chapters, blog posts, podcasts, workshops, and presentations have reached audiences from a wide range of sports, including basketball, squash, lacrosse, softball, tennis, football, figure skating, fencing, gymnastics, triathlon, track, and cross country.
Mitch is an athlete himself, and is very active in endurance sports like marathon running, triathlon, and adventure racing.