AT FIRST GLANCE, PHIL TAYLOR, or to give him his full title, Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor, would not strike you as being the most dominant British sporting star of the last 25 years. Comfortably middle aged, with a waist measurement that far exceeds his chest size,and heavily tattooed forearms, Phil has the appearance of a retired miner, pub landlord or plumber. However, in his chosen sport, he is revered by fans and feared by opponents. He has amassed 15 world titles in less than 20 years, and for many of those years Phil has become unbeatable.
Phil Taylor can do it under intense pressure and seems almost impervious to nerves
Darts is a sport in the same way that snooker, pool and ten pin bowling are. The speed of Usain Bolt, the stamina of Manny Pacqiaou, or the balance of Lionel Messi are not required.
Champions control their nerves, lesser players allow their nerves to control them.
Phil Taylor could be the poster boy for Stephen Covey’s theory of ‘Circles of Influence’. Covey suggests that in order to manage stress we should focus all of our energy and attention on only the issues which we can directly influence. We should not become frustrated over things that we cannot control. Phil Taylor is a master at exactly that.
When Taylor plays darts, he totally blocks out his opponent. He has no interest on the quality or scores achieved by the person he is playing against. All of his focus is on what he is doing. As he hits his target time and time again, his opposition begins to become desperate. They will him to miss, and when he does not, they become increasingly frustrated. This frustration leads to mistakes and those mistakes lead to their downfall. ‘The Power’ cannot stop his opponent from scoring, so he does not think about it. All he can do is throw his own good scores. By remaining oblivious to his opponent, Taylor shuts out the number one cause of nerves. As often as not, his opponent does not have this mental strength and his focus is drawn to Taylor’s performance. From that moment on, the result is not in doubt, and that is why Phil Taylor has 15 world title trophies decorating his home.
Many day-to-day frustrations and annoyances are caused by the behaviour of others and by decisions made by senior managers, thousands of miles away.
Become ‘The Power’! Focus your energy and passions on the areas in which you have direct control and influence. Do not lose sleep over things which you cannot change and ideally set such a high standard of performance that others are forced to notice you and may even be positively affected by your behaviour. In doing this you will hit your own bulls-eyes, again and again, and again.