What the Mind Conceives the Body Achieves

What the Mind Conceives the Body Achieves

In The Iron Lady, the movie about Great Britain’s first female Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, actress Meryl Streep impersonates Margaret Thatcher talking about her philosophy of life.

Thoughts and ideas become words. Words become actions. What your actions are become your habits. What your actions are become your character. And your character becomes destiny. What we think, we become.”

This positive state of mind becoming reality has aided many open water swimmers achieve dreams they possessed.

Graeme Schlachter explains his perspective, “I think what did [a successful English Channel swim] for me was my mental state of mind. [Before my attempt], I was fortunate enough to travel to work on a train. For 20 minutes in the morning and evening, I used this time to mentally go through my swim, imagining all aspects of the start, the swim, the sea conditions, the weather and the outcome. The outcome was always the same, I got across. The weather and conditions and all other aspects however changed in my mind every day. So by the time I actually swam the channel I had already swum it a 1000 times in my mind. Every train journey, I used to go into my mentally created cinema and watch a movie of me swimming the channel.

My mission was to swim the Channel. That is what I mentally trained for. I did put in the hours in the pool and Dover. I would say I spent about the same time mentally preparing my mind and body than I did actually doing the training.

Preparing my mind was as important, if not more so, than preparing my body. Any gremlins that you have in your mind are bound to manifest themselves in your body when the going gets tough. We can use our state of mind to programme, or re-programme, our bodies
.”

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source