Backing your own corner

Updated: Apr 11, 2019

It is very easy for us to ruminate on what we are supposedly doing 'incorrectly.'

'I should have done this.'

'I didn't do that.'

....and on and on!

Sometimes we perhaps give ourselves an unnecessary rough time.

Imagine reversing that a bit. Becoming more of your own best friend...backing your own corner more.

This comes to mind from Jim Afremow...

“To perform at a champion’s level, you must understand the importance of a long-term memory for success and a short-term memory(or selective amnesia) for failure.”

~ Jim Afremow

What are some of the key successes you can keep recalling to remind yourself of your capacity?

The so called failures, for sure learn form them, find the gems and then... get out of dodge.

In other words, no need to ruminate to the point that you have moved into learned helplessness mode - the belief that future failure is inevitable (Seligman).

Instead, have a short term memory for that stuff, lean into what's next and recall what you know you can achieve. You've succeeded before. You can do it again.

To help you with this a reflective tool from workbook 'Becoming a Student of Excellence'.


THINK BACK to three moments in your life and describe three scenarios in which EXCELLENCE was present.

Positive excellence scenario 1: Positive excellence scenario 2: Positive excellence scenario 3:

The benefit of doing this exercise is that it will positively reinforce you to remember that there have been instances in your life when you have already acted with EXCELLENCE.

Remember them.

With Arete,


Dr. Afremow is a counselor and sports psychologists based at Arizona State University. He has worked with artists, sporting and business professionals across many disciplines. You can check him out on

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