7 Steps for Breaking Through Mental Barriers and Having a Strong Mental Game

Post Last Updated: November 23, 2020

Are you mentally strong, or do you have doubts that you can achieve more? Are you able to break through barriers, or does your mind let you down? In this post, you’ll learn how to break through mental barriers, how to improve your mentality, and how using these new superpowers of mental strength will help you achieve anything you want.

Wouldn’t life be easy if you could achieve anything you set your mind to? How would it feel if you could attain any position or receive any reward you set out to receive?

The questions above are pretty interesting, in that I’m guessing you would love to achieve many things in life.

For me, I’d love to go full time as an entrepreneur. I’d love to workout every day and attain a physique like a model. I’d love to become better at rock climbing, golf, and other hobbies I have. It would be awesome to travel the world, learn new languages, and learn more about other cultures.

However, as I start to dream, plan and get on the path to crushing my goals, my pesky inner voice starts to intervene.

“Are you sure you can make it as an entrepreneur?”

“You don’t have good enough genetics to become super fit.”

“You aren’t talented enough to become better at your hobbies.”

“Do you know how much time it takes to learn a new language? What are you thinking?”

Maybe you’ve had the same experience with your inner voice.

During these times, and times when you are on your journey to getting what you want, having a strong mental game is incredibly important for staying on track and not getting stressed.

Being able to take these negative thoughts, and turn them into positive, motivating thoughts is critical and a skill you can develop.

Saying “Yes, it’s hard to achieve X, but I can do it by surrounding myself with the right people” or “Talent can be beaten by hard work and I’m going to work as hard as I can to reach my goals” can make all the difference when we get discouraged.

Getting through tough times and setbacks requires grit and determination, and in this post, you’ll learn how to better control your emotions, understand your powerful brain, and develop a strong mental game for success.

Your mind is a powerful thing. When you fill it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.

Your Mental Ability is Highly Critical for Success in Life

In sports, often times, the difference between the winner and a loser will be the winner’s ability to block out distractions, focus on the task at hand, and stay positive through adversity.

Cultivating a strong mental game comes from many hours of practice and preparation, and helps us build confidence in ourselves.

What many people don’t realize is that outside of sports, having a strong mental game is equally as important.

In the workplace, being able to get through stressful periods successfully can help us overcome any obstacle and lead to promotions, more responsibility and a higher salary.

At home, if you are constantly getting upset and not being able to resolve issues, you’ll become frustrated and angry.

But, being able to bounce back, communicate if someone has hurt you, and move on to spending quality time with your partner, everything can be back to normal and you’ll be happier.

As we have discussed briefly here, having a strong mental game is important, but what are some of the differences between being mentally tough and mentally weak? How can we become better mentally?

Let’s dive into those questions now.

The Differences Between Being Mentally Tough and Mentally Weak

There are a few differences between being mentally tough and being mentally weak.

In particular, I want to focus on a few situations where the difference between being mentally tough and mentally weak are apparent.

Situation one is being happy vs. sad. In this case, I’m not talking about clinical depression – I’m talking about in a game, business or around the house. Mentally tough are able to move on quicker from a setback and get back to being positive about the situation at hand. Mentally weak people dwell on the current situation and let it affect their energy and day.

For example, if the boss comes to you with negative feedback on a mistake you made, a mentally tough person will take the feedback and work on doing better next time. They don’t waste energy on things they can’t control (the past), and welcome the challenge of doing better next time.

A mentally weak person might blame themselves, blame someone else, be afraid to take the next assignment, and become discouraged at work.

Another example is with relationships. I’ve hard to learn this one the hard way many times, but sometimes two people are not meant for each other.

There have been relationships in my past where I spent weeks and months getting over an ex, but as I became more mature, I’ve learned that sometimes people aren’t truly perfect for each other, and everything happens for a reason.

As I’ve become more mature and mentally strong, I’ve been able to move on and not waste time on feeling sorry for myself – I realize that even though it didn’t work out this time, there is someone else out there who I can make happy and can make me happy.

Now, let’s get into the 7 steps for you to work on to break through mental barriers and improve yourself.

7 Steps to Breaking Through Mental Barriers and Improving Yourself Mentally

What are the steps and things you can do to becoming better mentally? Like any skill, you can take a number of steps and actions to improve.

Below are the 7 steps you can take and try to break through mental barriers and improve as a person mentally. You can click on any of the links below to go directly to the section, or continue to scroll down the page.

  1. Realize the Importance of Mental Strength
  2. Practice with Intention
  3. Do Affirmations
  4. Visualize Success in Your Life
  5. Do Breathing Exercises to Manage Stress
  6. Read about Exercises to Improve Mentally
  7. Realize that Setbacks Will Happen, but You Can Overcome Anything

Let’s dive into each of these points in greater detail.

1. Understand that Mental Strength Will Get You As Far As Any Other Skill

As discussed above in the opening few paragraphs, your mental strength and fortitude will keep you going and get your farther than any talent or ability alone.

The ability to stick with something, to be positive, and to continue to work until the job is done is more important than having the talent to do something.

Mental toughness is the gasoline which fuels your actions and abilities. Without gasoline, it doesn’t matter if you have a 500 horsepower car or a 50 horsepower car – you aren’t going anywhere.

With gasoline, and with a strong mental game, anything is possible.

Understanding that mental strength is something that you need to work on and is a skill that can be improved is s

2. Practice with Intention to Gain Confidence in Yourself

Deliberate practice is a great way to improve your skills and grow as a person.

Instead of going through the motions, using deliberate practice for improvement can help you become mentally stronger.

Over time, through practice, you can gain confidence. This confidence will work to your advantage when you get into situations where you need to be at your best.

In sports, the best players don’t worry about taking the last shot because they have practiced thousands of times for that moment.

For them, it’s not the first time they have done that, and as a result, they have the mental fortitude and confidence to perform to the best of their abilities.

Practicing and making sure you are doing the best you can do in any moment will lead to confidence, and through confidence, you’ll have the belief in yourself to do whatever you want in life.

3. Do Affirmations to Tell Yourself You are Enough

Our minds are incredibly powerful and can quite literally create its own reality.

Using positive thinking can manifest itself in living the life you want to live.

Telling yourself you are a positive person will result in you becoming a more positive person.

You are what you say you are.

Saying, “I’m a negative person who can never accomplish anything” is a reinforcing trap. Saying this sort of thing will result in you being a negative person who will never accomplish anything.

Likewise, telling yourself, “I’m a positive person who can accomplish anything” will lead to accomplishments beyond your wildest dreams.

Using positive thinking can help guide you on your path to becoming more mentally strong.

4. Utilize Visualization to Live the Moment Before You Experience it

Similar to affirmations, you can use visualization to experience your desired outcome before it happens.

When you visualize a situation, you are tricking your mind into thinking you’ve already experienced it, and with each visualization, you become more confident.

Visualization helps you activate your subconscious into working it’s magic and helps you build your internal motivation to do your best when the time comes.

Sit in a quiet room and think about your goals and future situations you want to find success in. Try to think about all of the possibilities and try to fully experience the moment before it happens.

See yourself succeeding with that important speech, in the test to help you gain a new qualification, or winning the race you’ve been training for forever.

With visualization, you can gain confidence in your abilities and when the time comes, you’ll be ready to rock and crush your goals.

5. Learn about Breathing Techniques to Help Relax when You are Stressed

Slowing down and focusing on our breathing has many benefits.

Breathing relieves anxiety, stress and tension in the body. Also, breathing can help our mental state by helping stop panic attacks, freezing or choking under pressure and lowers our stress levels.

I try to do deep breathing a few times a day to keep myself centered and focused on the task at hand. It’s helped me a lot in keeping my cool, and has served me well.

Here’s a link for 10 breathing exercises to try: 10 Breathing Exercises

6. Read Books about Mental Strength and Overcoming Adversity

Reading books from experts in mental strength can help you develop habits to become better mentally. Having an edge in your ability to overcome things will help you achieve any goal you set, and help you separate yourself from the rest of the world as a world class individual.

I love reading, and some of the books I’ve read on mental strength have been eye opening. Reading about Olympic Gold medalists and top performers is interesting, but at the highest level, mental preparation is what separates the gold medalist from the bronze medalist.

In particular, I’ve read and reviewed the following three books which I think will help you with working on your mental game: With Winning in MindUnbeatable MindThe Slight Edge.

Learning from experts is always great – we need to stand on the shoulders of giants to be able to see far!

7. Realize Mistakes Happen, But You Can Bounce Back

Without failure, there is no success. If you achieved success in everything you did, where would the growth be? How would that be a great story?

Failure and struggle is part of human nature, and overcoming that struggle is how you grow and become better.

Being honest with you, setbacks happen and they suck. I’ve had injuries in sports where I had to sit out for some time – it sucked and it made me thankful for the times I was able to play. It made me reassess my game and be smarter with my head.

However, when I recovered, I was rested and ready to give it my all, and I started playing better than before.

You can bounce back from any mistake and get back on the road to success. You are capable of achieving anything and it’s important to understand that failure is temporary.

Are You Going to Become Mentally Strong in the Next Few Weeks?

I hope you’ve enjoyed this article on mental strength, and I hope that you are now interested in pursuing some of the exercises above to become more mentally strong and crush your goals.

Improving in any skill takes time, but with consistent actions and intentional practice, you can get to a point where it’s automatic and you are a rockstar.

You are on to living your best life and through these actions, you’ll be closer to your goals each and every day.