Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Guardian News: Roy Hodgson announces England will use a sports psychologist in Brazil

The Guardian online published an article on 4 March 2014 in the Sport>Football>Roy Hodgson section titled: Roy Hodgson announces England will use a sports psychologist in Brazil.

Here are some key quotes:
"The England manager Roy Hodgson has confirmed he will use a sports psychologist in the lead-up to the World Cup – naming Dr Steve Peters as the man who will help prepare his players for the challenges in Brazil.

Peters, who has worked closely with Liverpool and has a long-standing relationship with the England captain Steven Gerrard, will be involved with Hodgson's squad and the manager is pleased to have him on board.  "It is not just any psychologist," he said. "

It is Dr Steve Peters, who is a very famous man in that area. He has a great CV of working in different sports and has been doing some work with Liverpool and Brendan Rodgers so Steve knows him well.
Peters has also worked successfully with the Great Britain cycling team and the five-times world snooker champion Ronnie O'Sullivan."
Dr Steve Peters is the author of the book The Chimp Paradox: How Our Impulses and Emotions Can Determine Success and Happiness (2013), within which he outlines in his model of the human mind and how it functions, a naughty chimp causing stress and problems:
"The Chimp operates with a ‘Jungle Centre’ that is based on instincts and drives. The Jungle Centre is an area within the Chimp brain that gives the Chimp the characteristics and attitudes needed to survive in a jungle. This Centre contains beliefs and behaviours that work well in the jungle but not so well in a society! Major problems arise when the Chimp applies its jungle drives in a Human society."
The idea of a "monkey mind" lying at the core of our stress and unhappiness is an idea at the centre of mindfulness, as Diana Winston highlights in Fully Present: The Science, Art, and Practice of Mindfulness (2010), p44:
"Most of the time our minds are wandering all over the place, awash in a variety of stimuli. Some Hindu and Buddhist meditation texts compare our minds to chattering monkeys jumping from tree branch to tree branch—they call this “monkey mind.” Being generally aware, without a center focus point, is possible, but not easy. And in the long run it can be tiring or perhaps a little overwhelming."
Theravada Buddhist monk Ven. Henepola Gunaratana also refers to this in his book Mindfulness in Plain English (2011), p69:
"The monkey-mind phenomenon is well known. It is something that every seasoned meditator has had to deal with."

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