"We are a collective geezer." Uffish, to Katya
Question #91930 posted on 01/08/2019 7:52 p.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

A couple years ago, Craig Manning gave a devotional called "The Power of Your Words." In it Manning mentions that he encourages his athletes to have a power statement. He describes how a power statement can be helpful and how it can be deployed. But he never actually says what a power statement is nor how to go about composing one. So, my questions are twofold:

According to Craig Manning, what is a power statement?

According to Craig Manning, how should a power statement be composed? (For example, are there specific elements that should be included?)

—Speaking Truth to Power (Statements)


Dear Power-Up,

I think the most classic example of a power statement comes from the children's book The Little Engine That Could. In the story the train that carried food and toys to the children of a village over the mountain broke down and couldn't make the delivery. A bunch of strong and powerful trains refused to make the delivery because the hill was to steep and the load was too heavy, but a tiny little engine volunteered. The whole way up the mountain he said to himself "I think I can. I think can. I think I can."

Basically, a power statement is a phrase that one tells themselves to help them perform better. Typically power statement are short yet meaningful. They are used to help focus or motivate.

Funny tangential story--one time I was in a music class and we had a guest lecture give a presentation of power phrases. She was a PhD sports psychologist from Canada that also played music and applied sports psychology to musical performance. To give an example of a power statement she told us that her favorite skier would shout "F$%& it!" before he went down a run.

She must have not known she was presenting at religious university because she was quite perplexed when the students didn't find the F word very funny. She then preceded to repeat the joke because she thought we didn't hear it. She was met with the most uncomfortable silence I've ever experienced in my life. Then one of the students said "Oh yeah, that's what I'm gonna say before I give a flute solo in church." It was a bizarre yet hilarious experience.



P.S. The question kinda sounded like a homework question, and that's why I didn't give many specifics. We're happy to answer your questions, but we don't like it when people try to use us for their homework. I'm not saying that you did, I'm just putting that out there for our readers.

posted on 01/09/2019 10:06 a.m.
Small, but important correction: The little engine that could is a she, not a he.

-Father of girls