Self-Confidence with Hailey Elise

November 26 — 2019

“I can’t.”

 

Chances are, you’re probably familiar with this phrase. I know I am. It goes along with that feeling of being stuck in one place. Usually, after it drifts through as a thought or ends up being said out loud, tunnel vision ensues and the possibility of overcoming the trigger is even more distant. But what happens when instead of saying "I can’t", you say “I can”? 

This past season has had many highs and lows. A few injuries and one of the most challenging mental blocks I’ve encountered to date dotted spring, summer, and fall. It was hard and yet, also very rewarding as I embarked on a path of self-discovery as a rider. When the mental block began, I once again reached out to my beloved friend, fellow Juliana rider, and coach Jaime Hill. She had me start working on the most basic parts of the skill. It was tedious but incredibly helpful. In addition to working through the skill from start to finish and advancing accordingly, I slowly began to regain faith in my ability as a rider with each small success. 

I allowed myself at that moment to believe that the mental block was just too strong.

One fateful day, when it came time for me to execute a more complex and challenging feature for a video, I buckled yet again and went right back into saying that familiar “I can’t”. I sat on a stump in the middle of the woods and let the waves of doubt, anger, and frustration move through me. I allowed myself to believe that the mental block was just too strong at that moment. Somewhere in the midst of the distrust, a desire to fight prevailed and a shift in perception occurred.

I knew that I had the skill. I had worked tirelessly on it with Jaime and could break it down step by step. I repeated this to myself and through this knowledge, I was able to find the confidence to break through the belief that I could not do it. 

I realized after that day, that believing in your ability was a huge part of mountain biking. It’s very easy to become whatever you tell yourself. Instead of gravitating towards “I can’t”, I began to start my rides off with “I can”. The self-assurance grew each time I performed the skill successfully, and soon I was attempting more difficult features than before. But it doesn’t stop there. It turns out that supporting others in their own successes, imagery, and a positive emotional and psychological state can all help with self-confidence on a bike. There are so many ways to constantly feed trusting yourself while living it up on the trails.

So I challenge you, dear reader and rider, to see what saying “I can” instead of saying “I can’t" does to your ride and even those around you. You might be surprised. 

 

Juliana Bicycles - Hailey Elise

Hailey Elise is a Juliana Ambassador. She is not only an incredible athlete but a talented photographer and videographer. She has placed in Whistler's Deep Summer Photo Challenge and continues to inspire awe from the Juliana team. 
 
You can catch her riding in her hometown of Whistler, shredding in Southern, Utah, or anywhere in between. 

 

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