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Mental Toughness

In Elemental. More on Medium.

Research into athletes’ mindsets can help every person become psychologically stronger

Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

When someone is described as being “mentally tough,” it typically signals that they’re resilient, self-assured, and bold. Ask any athlete what the concept means in sports, and they will answer, “you thrive in competition,” “you’re self-confident,” and “you can handle the pressure.” But all these statements describe behavior, rather than what’s going on inside one’s head. They fail to define what mental toughness actually is and how it develops.

In 2002, Graham Jones, professor of elite performance psychology at the University of Wales, set out to answer the question: “What Is This Thing Called Mental Toughness?” He interviewed 10 sports…

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