Rising up to the occasion – what it means to be ‘Clutch’

Happy Motivational Monday!

Today I was watching the World Cup game Germany vs Portugal, and it got me thinking. Athletes have one of the toughest jobs in the world. It is not only a physically rigorous training, but it is mentally extremely taxing also.

First, to go through the amount of physical training that an athlete (of the World Cup caliber) must go through, one must be able to push their minds past the limiting perceptions of pain and endurance. Your mind must withstand and endure, even if your body is on the verge of failing. After all, more than half the battle is believing you are able to keep going. Your mind calls the shots, your body merely follows. So, for these athletes to be trained to perform at arenas such as the World Cup, they must show exceptional willpower and endurance.

Second, the training is only one piece of the pie. What happens AFTER all the training is over, when it is actually time to step onto the field and PERFORM? The field where thousands and even millions of people from ALL OVER THE WORLD, are feasting their eyes, their hearts and their hopes on. This is when your mind has to be able to work its absolute best. No matter of physical training and skill is going to save you if your mind crumbles and you ‘choke up’. Yes, it is an UNIMAGINABLE amount of pressure. But rising up to the occasion and PERFORMING when it matters most, is called ‘clutch‘.

It is not only athletes who are ‘clutch’ though. ‘Clutch’ can be any person who is able to rise to the occasion, get charged up and do their absolute best. Whether it is giving a speech infront of 50 people, performing the Heimlich maneuver on a choking friend, or being a contestant on ‘The Voice’. There are hundreds of such people around us, with the unique and admirable ability to perform when it matters most.

Is it possible to develop yourself to be ‘clutch’? To a certain degree, yes. Although some innate qualities you possess may help or hinder your ability to be ‘clutch’, it is a quality that can be instilled into someone, to a certain degree.

Keep an eye out on this blog as I will be talking more about it in the upcoming weeks. Meanwhile, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!

Lessons Learnt from The FIFA World Cup, is a series of blog posts which will draw inspiration from The World Cup series and its incredible athletes. Discussions about motivation, mental endurance, and peak performance will be some highlights of this series.