coaching flow scott ford tier 2

By Scott Ford

Performance soul is developed through flow-state training practices that deactivate ego and activate soul, and then by taking the flow-state into their different fields of performance complexity. Would that this transformation could be solidified overnight, but flow is only solidified when it is practiced. Otherwise flow is all theory, no application. All hat, no cowboy.

Tier 2 training trains both cowboy and hat, equally and simultaneously through mental, emotional, and spiritual state training practices like those seen in EVO FIT, where not only are players trained for the physical, mental, and emotional complexities of competition, but they are also trained to handle the spiritual complexities of competition as well. Tier 2 training awakens and develops your performance soul, who then proceeds to play your socks off!

At least that’s the theory of how playing in a flow-state improves your game. And why wouldn’t it? There is nothing about flow that can screw up a player's existing game. The only thing that flow screws up is a player's existing ego. Simply put, choosing non-dual flow messes with your dualistic ego. You can count on it. Sports psychology tells us we can’t use ego to create an egoless state. We can, however, train our ego to turn itself off, and in so doing, turn on our performance soul.

(Note to coaches: your ego despises deactivation training, especially when it involves actively training your ego’s archrival – your performance soul).

In the red corner, wanting to win the competition, is your dualistic ego, while in the green corner, wanting to be one with the competition, is your non-dual soul.

The deepest competition we face in performance sports is the fundamental competition between ego and soul. Talk about a sibling rivalry! Ego vs Soul. It happens every time we walk onto the playing field or enter into competitive situations. Ego sees competition as me wanting to kick your ass for a win. By comparison, soul, sees competition as you and me kicking ass together, win or lose.

As David Meggyesy, one of EVO Sports founding members reminds us, the word “competition” comes from the Latin word “competere,” which means “to strive together.” It does not mean “I kick your ass, or you kick mine.”

Understand that the evolution of sport is also the evolution of competition, and that competition is rooted in collaborative unity, striving together. Its branches, however, have evolved into competitive rivalries that have a dualistic history of striving against.

Question: how is dualistic rivalry working for you? How is it working in the games you play? How is it working in your life? On a larger scale, how is dualistic rivalry working for Planet Earth?

If we take a global perspective on dualistic rivalry, the picture we get is… Well, you can take your own picture of the global state of the planet, but the chances are, it won’t be a picture of global unity. Instead it will be a snapshot of global division, of ancient and storied rivalries between countries and cultures and beliefs systems. About the only culture we have in common around the globe is the culture of sport, which contains examples of both rivalry and collaborative competitions. Striving against vs striving together.

Which form of competition seems more appropriate for the global times, called by Jean Houston, “a time of whole system transition?” I don’t know about you as a player, and I don’t know about you as a coach. I just know about me as a player and a coach, and for me, this time of whole system transition is the perfect time for the emergence of the transformational training practices we see in programs like EVO FIT, or Catt Tripoli’s “Conscious Fitness” training, or Jamie Zimron’s “Centered Golf.” All of EVO Sport’s transformational practices are designed to transform human beings while the whole system around us transitions for better or worse.

Transformational coaching seems perfectly appropriate during times of whole system transition, so I’m betting on the expansion of Tier 2 coaching and performance transformations to start showing up in the “Bigs,” and then to filter down into the everyday performances we see at the level of rec-center complexity.

The levels of complexity range from high to low, and now that we know how to coach conscious flow, the question becomes why coach it in the first place when winning pays the rent? If playing in the zone could always guarantee a win, then the culture of sport would be all over it, but currently, flow-state coaching is still in its emergent stage, called the Integral Stage in developmental psychology. At EVO Sports, we call it “Home.”


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