‘Being in the zone' mentally before an online gaming session: Why is it important and how can you get into it?

Anyone into gaming knows that online play has really taken off in recent years. It seems that this is fast becoming the gaming format of choice for many. But why is this? It seems that players love the social side of multi-player online gaming and how it allows them to engage with friends all over the world via their favorite title. Of course, online play is also convenient and more accessible than ever, thanks to better game sites and faster internet networks.

Online gaming is also available across a whole host of mediums, from mobiles to consoles and PCs. This means that you can easily log on and play via pretty much any internet-connected device. It is not just online video games or games to keep you mentally sharp that people love either.

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Whatever type of online gaming you try though, it is key to be ‘in the zone' mentally before starting your session. This is true for single-player games or multi-player online sessions. But why is this?

Why should you make sure you get in the right frame of mind?
Although there is a physical element to playing online games (using the controller, mouse or keyboard), much of your success is done to your mental approach. This has long been known in other sectors, such as pro sports, where athletes recognize that being in the zone is needed to perform well.

But how does this state of mind feel? It usually means you feeling totally alert and ready but relaxed. You will feel like you are destined to win in your upcoming session and have a positive outlook on what is about to happen. With this in mind, the below tips are ideal for getting into the right mental state before a gaming session online.

Recognize what your body is telling you
What your body is telling you can have a big impact on your state of mind. If you do not pay attention to this, your physical state can distract you mentally when playing. Therefore, you should keep an eye on what your body is telling you before gaming to get yourself into the zone. If you feel hungry, make sure you eat to avoid hunger clouding your judgement. If you feel tired, then get some sleep or take a nap before logging on. Sleep deprivation will take you out of the zone and make your reactions sluggish.

Give alcohol, sugar and caffeine a miss
If you are getting ready to log on and play games, then pay attention to what you eat beforehand. While it is necessary to eat if you feel hungry, try to avoid caffeine, sugar and alcohol. Sugar, for example, can affect your insulin levels and make you feel more jittery. This can in turn distract you from the game you are playing and make it hard to stay focused. Alcohol can also stop you from getting into the zone before gaming by affecting your judgement, and caffeine can actually impact your reaction times.

Don't play if you feel down or depressed
Getting into the ideal state of mind before a gaming session online is all about how you feel. If you are feeling stressed out, down or depressed, then it will be almost impossible to perform to your best. This is because too many negative emotions will be in your mind. As we have already noted, being in the zone is about being relaxed and carefree. If you an argument with a friend is playing on your mind, then it is best to give the session a miss. When you have processed what is troubling you and you feel more relaxed, you can then get started.

Where's your head at?
Ultimately, this is the major thing to think about before beginning any online game. Whether it is online poker, cool online slots or a multi-player video game, you will not do well if you are not right mentally. A good final tip, therefore, is to think about how you feel before playing and only log on when you feel that your head is truly in the game.

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