Tuesday Tip: Choosing the right type of goals

Tuesday 21 January, 2014

This tip is from issue 151 of Cross Country magazine and comes from an article about motivation. We interviewed Chrigel Maurer’s Red Bull X-Alps team mate sports psychologist Thomas Theurillat

Looking ahead

Master looking for multiple options ahead, where would you go?. Photo: Marcus King

We often talk about setting goals in free flight. But what type of goal you set is as important, says Thomas.

“Most pilots focus too much on performance goals not mastery goals, and that’s a mistake,” he explains.

Mastery goals are things like ‘I will take off and land with style’ for example – while performance goals are things like ‘I will fly 100km’.

“If you focus on the process the flying will be better. For example, instead of aiming for a certain number of kilometres, make it your goal to learn to relax during flight, or fly for four hours.”

He adds: “If you are trying to become a better pilot you can give yourself, for example, a mastery goal of learning to see three options ahead as you climb in each thermal.

“With a performance goal, if you don’t reach it then you are immediately demotivated. But if you have a mastery goal like this then each flight will be a success.”

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