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You Have Been Programmed To Fail In Hockey (How To Break Free & Unlock Your True Potential)

Imagine this...

You step onto the ice for the first shift of the game.

The cold air brushing against your skin.

Your breath is visible as you exhale your warm breath.

Your first shift begins.

It starts like any other shift, you feel pretty good, but nothing special.

But then there's a moment, a short moment, where you feel something different.

You make a play you have never made before.

The play just seemed to come out of nowhere.

At the moment you made the play, you felt light and effortless.

You forget about WHERE you are or WHO you are.

At this moment you felt completely FREE.

At this moment you felt the joy of playing hockey that always brings you back for more.

It's not the wins and losses.

It's not the championships.

Though we may have convinced ourselves that those are what we care about - we don't really care about those things.

Those are games of the MIND.

Now I know some people will simply click away from this article because they think I am wrong.

Bet there are a limited few who will read on.

This limited few know that there is something REAL to what I am saying.

They so deeply want to find that place again where they felt that true freedom on the ice!

They want so deeply to get back to feeling like a god on the ice.

You are one of those players because you are still reading.

You are my kind of person.

Chasing Freedom

I experienced several of these moments of freedom in my career.

I can still remember many of them like they were yesterday.

These moments were the highlights of my career.

Not because they were perfect, but because I remember feeling something special.

I remember feeling something that truely cannot be put into words.

The sad thing was that I spent a total of maybe 5 minutes in these states throughout my career.

After playing hundreds of games, I that's all I got.

Not to say I didn't play some great games, I did.

But when it comes to those special moments of freedom, they were just fleeting moments for me.

Each time that I had these moments, I tried to find a way to recreate them.

I would try to go back to the feeling.

But the harder I tried, the worse I felt...

when I asked people what to do, they told me to work harder or try to relax.

I tried these things, but I could never force these feelings to come back.

I would always ask myself: "Why can I not feel freedom on the ice all of the time!?"

The Search

I became obsessed with trying to understand what was going on.

I searched endlessly to understand why I could not get there.

I have spent over 10 years now deeply studying this and experimenting for myself (in game and non-game settings).

I read dozens of books and watched endless secret videos on sports performance, but all they really told me was to think more positively and set clear goals.

These would help me feel a little better, but never really helped me find that freedom.

The Blame Game

So then I blamed my skills.

I assumed I wasn't skilled enough and that's why I wasn't playing free.

I went on a journey to play like the best players in the world.

I became obsessed with my mechanics and movements.

But what I did not realize is that I had solid skills and it was not about radically changing my skill set.

Instead, I needed to realize that I had the capability of playing free before, and I needed to find a way to increase the frequency of getting there.

If you have done it once, you can do it again.

Sure I could always improve my skills and my physical body.

But what I needed to do was tap into what I already had first, then keep improving my skill.

That is likely your biggest issue as an athlete too.

You likely have a wealth of ability within you - you just need to figure out how to unlock it.

I didn't realize that trying to force myself to play better actually caused me to play worse.

I had set such high goals for myself and put so much pressure on myself that there was an endless fear of not achieving those things.

I was so afraid to lose that I feared messing up.

If I messed up, then I would ruin my chances of reaching my goals.

Fear was fueling my ego to protect me.

The Enemy

So mistakes became my enemy.

And every game was built around minimizing mistakes.

Always minimizing risk.

I was always playing it safe.

But that's not what I wanted to do.

All I wanted to do was find that freedom I had tasted for those few short glimpses.

There was a deep conflict between what I wanted and what I was doing.

By having big goals that I NEEDED to achieve, but I lived in fear of not reaching them.

But by living in fear, I was being prevented from achieving my goals because I was not able to perform to my potential.

Due to fear, I assumed that I needed to THINK my way through the game.

My ego needed to have its hands on the wheel because it didn't trust me to just flow.

My ego was too scared of me messing it all up.

"We worked too hard for this." I would say in my head. "Don't mess it up now by making a big mistake!"

This was my mindset from the time I was very young.

I wanted to make my parents happy.

I wanted to make my coaches happy.

I wanted to make my teammates happy.

I wanted to make the fans happy.

But I was not happy trying to make everyone else happy.

This people-pleasing strategy did not work.

Sadly for my whole career I just assumed this fear was normal and it was what things were supposed to be...

Only after my career did I gain the perspective to understand things on a deeper level.

A New Perspective

Like nearly all athletes, I was caught in a web of social conditioning.

Social conditioning:

The sociological process of training individuals in a society to respond in a manner generally approved by society in general and peer groups within society.

My actions and reactions were dictated not by choice but by the habit and societal norms I had been programmed by.

And the societal programming is endless.

We're all caught in an endless cycle of seeking approval.

We are constantly measuring success through wins and losses.

We are constantly comparing ourselves to the world around us.

We ride the emotional rollercoaster of whether or not we scored in our last game.

We hope that one day we can be free from these burdens.

But deep down, we know there is no real hope.

That's why so many players resort to alcohol and drugs as opposed to learning and growing as a player and person.

And yes, there is a lot more drug use in hockey than people realize, it's just hidden from the public eye.

We are conditioned to be this way by society.

  1. Feel bad about yourself

  2. Buy a quick fix

  3. Feel better for a little while

  4. Then feel worse after the high wears off

  5. Buy another quick fix

  6. And the cycle continues

This conditioning begins early.

It's a part of capitalism and the way our society is structured.

And as we are conditioned, we build an Identity of who we are.

This becomes our self-image and it's often a negative one.

We solidify into an identity that feels as real as the ice beneath our skates.

We are TAUGHT by our parents, teachers, friends, and social media, what normal is.

And normal is having a negative self-image and feeling bad about yourself so you will be more stuff from people.

The "Normal" Trap

We are conditioned by the people around us to be normal.

It feels safe to be normal.

And if you are anything like me, I wanted to be safe and avoid the things I was afraid of.

But why the f*** would you want to be normal?

Normal people get normal results.

Normal athletes have normal careers.

Yet, we often strive to be normal because we are taught by society if we stand out, we will be punished.

If you start playing well on a hockey team, you will start to get chirped by the opponent, or two worse - your own team.

It might seem harmless, but it will break you down if you have not been trained to deal with it.

and let's be clear:

The chirping is aimed at pulling you back down.

People don't like when others are better than them.

So they will try to pull them down to their level.

Just like crabs in a bucket.

If a crab tries to escape, the other crabs will pull it back down.

This happens for many players.

So they build an identity based on these external expectations.

They limit themselves to avoid the negative feedback from the people around them.

This leaves them disconnected from their true selves (their true potential).

They have been conditioned by the world to be less than themselves.

This happens to most players subconsciously.

Dr. Kapil Gupta (world-renowned performance coach for many of the best professional athletes) says something in his blogs "Senseless" and "The Common Man" that resonates deeply with this struggle.

He says humans "live a life on autopilot."

They live a life of senseless actions driven by conditioning rather than free choice.

The Weight Of Conditioning

We play games carrying all of the conditioning that has been programmed into us.

We feel heavy on the ice weighed down by everything that we carry into the game

Kinda like this.

We often play games with a very heavy weight on our backs because of all of the things we mentally bring into the game.

All of the mental clutter we bring into the game prevents us from seeing the game clearly.

It prevents us from playing in that deep free flowing state we all love.

My Offer To You

I offer you to see beyond the lies fed by society.

I offer you to NOT be normal.

I offer you a pursuit of truth.

I do not ask you to do it.

I simply offer this like reaching out my hand while you are drowning in the cold water of your old conditioning.

And just like you can lead a horse to water, but you can't MAKE him drink.

I am offering my hand to help you towards that freedom you seek, but I cannot MAKE you take my hand.

That is a choice you must make to take my hand, and then walk the path.

Are you ready?

The Path

There is a way to freedom.

There is a path to becoming free of the mind.

A path that leads not to the validation of trophies and accolades.

A path that instead leads to the peace and joy inherent in true self-discovery?

This journey from:

Ego and conditioned identity -> to the true self offers a liberation unlike any other.

Where hockey becomes more than just a game to win but an expression of joy.

Where performance is not pressured, and it simply arranges freely.

The transition begins with recognizing the ego's grip and the conditioning that clouds your reality.

By reflecting on these elements and consciously choosing what serves you, you embark on a transformative process.

It's about releasing the old programming to make room for the new programming.

By engaging in practices like meditation and journaling we can begin to walk this path.

Now these are simply prescriptions that will start you down the path.

The best place to get next will be the free training course we offer here

Here is a place where you can start:

To navigate this journey, consider the following steps as one continuous journal reflection over the next few weeks:

  1. Awareness: Recognize the conditioning and ego's influence on your life and sports performance.

  2. Reflection: Take time to ponder these influences. What are they? Where did they come from? Are they truly yours?

  3. Decision: Consciously decide which parts of this conditioning serve you and which don't.

  4. Release: Practice letting go of the conditioning that no longer serves you. Visualize releasing these programmes habits like balloons, each one representing a piece of unwanted conditioning.

  5. True Self-Reflection: Imagine who you could be without these limitations. Who is the true self that remains?

  6. Daily Practice: Commit to daily meditation and journaling, focusing on separating what is conditioning from what is genuinely your desire. I encourage you to start with 10 minutes and increase things up to 60 minutes per day as desired. Yes, I know that is a lot of time, but how important is it to reach your potential?

  7. Awareness Revisited: After few weeks, reassess. What conditioning remains? What aspects of your true self have you uncovered?

This will be a powerful start to your path towards freedom.

I hope you take my hand and start walking down the path!

For That Serious One Player

For you who is ready to take the next step, from the ego to finding your Identity to discovering your true self, I invite you to a personal conversation with me.

This journey is not for everyone, but if you're an athlete seeking to transcend the mind and discover the boundless potential within, this conversation could be a life changer as it has been for many of the players I have worked with.

If it is not your time, then please do not bother reaching out.

I have limited time so I only want to work with serious players who TRUELY want to discover their potential.

You can book a call with me here: Corson's Personal Calendar

I hope you have a great week!

  • Corson

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Who is Corson Searles?

I am a former player & mental/performance advisor for AAA, junior, college, and pro hockey players. I am obsessed with dissecting atheletic performance potential, lifestyle design, and hockey development.


When You're Ready, Here's How I Can Help You:

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