Sometimes you're too close to a situation to fully appreciate the enormity of what you've achieved, especially if there are lingering disappointments about missing out on the ultimate goal. Sometimes it takes an objective third party to share an alternate point of view, and Liverpool's psychologist-in-residence, Dr Steve Peters, was happy to provide one at the end the club's impressive season.
"They have had their best season for 24 years and my own belief is that it is the start of a golden era for the club," the good doctor said in wide-raging interview with the Liverpool Echo. "They have established themselves as a team before the best, and winning the League again will be just a matter of time.
"They have finished brilliantly and you have to get a perspective. We are too harsh on ourselves and others. It is great to get good results, but we should reward the effort as well. We can’t always win, we can only be our best."
It's not a sentiment that professional athletes can necessarily take on board easily given the competitive drive and need for success inherent to most athletes, but getting them to manage the mental side of their game is Peters' main goal with the players he sees. Peters will be spending his summer at the World Cup in the company of Roy Hodgson and the English national team, and with jokes already flying fast and loose about the Three Lions' inevitable exit from the tournament, the A-for-Effort approach might be key in helping Steven Gerrard and his teammates focus themselves for the fight ahead of them.
But back on Merseyside, preparations will be underway for next season. The ever modest Peters is vocal about being but one man on a larger "phenomenal, expert team" assembled by Brendan Rodgers to see to the various needs of the team, and this team will set the club up for future triumphs.
"At Liverpool there is such a good support team, so many excellent professionals," he continued. "I am really impressed with the staff and the club. You just know that this is a Liverpool team that will succeed."