It’s not unusual anymore for sports professionals to work with psychologists. The mind plays such a critical part in sporting success. They also work with therapists, to look to heal difficult personal issues from the past,
It is unusual. however, for a top player to hire a spiritual guru. Which is exactly what tennis star Novak Djokovic appears to have done.
The three times Wimbledon champion has turned to former tennis player, Pepe Imaz who now preaches the gospel of love and peace, through meditation and other self-reflective techniques. It will of course be interesting to see how this translates into Novak’s results.
Can love make you a better tennis player? Well it can certainly make you a better human being. And, perhaps, that is precisely the point.
Of course, as a sports professional, your whole life and identity can be caught up in the ebb and flow of this results based industry. Everyone knows you as a tennis player. But that doesn’t tell us anything about you as a person.
What your deeper beliefs are. What motivates you beyond money. How you see and feel about your life. What you see yourself doing beyond tennis. The qualities in you that dont get liberated as a sports professional.
Yes, a sports psychologist can tackle these issues. But perhaps Novak needs something different. Something that resonates with his deeper feelings. Feelings that tap into his uniqueness as a human being.
Maybe results based strategies no longer spark him. What is needed is food and nourishment for the inner self. A self that can be starved by the drive to succeed.
It takes a brave man to take a different path. But when you are the best in the world at what you do, standing still is rarely an option. A tennis career has a limited shelf life. But discovering yourself is the journey of a lifetime.