SCOTLAND star Callum Paterson has revealed how a self-help guide recommended by ex-Hearts teammate Brad McKay helped him navigate a host of injury traumas.
The former Tynecastle favourite is no stranger to the treatment table during his career.
The 25-year-old sat out six months with a torn tendon in his foot in 2013, nine months due to cruciate knee ligament damage in 2016/17 and missed the tail end of the 2018/19 campaign with ankle ligament damage.
Yet, Paterson remains philosophical about the set-backs and credits much of his positivity to ‘The Secret’ by Rhonda Byrne – a book recommended by Inverness ace McKay when they played together at Hearts.
Paterson said: “I’ve had more injuries than I care to remember. I’ve been injured for YEARS, combined, and I’m still only 25.
“So it’s difficult to be this young and know that so many injuries are bad for my career going forward.
“But I remember getting a book after my first serious set-back called ‘The Secret’ and it had ‘daily teachings’ inside. I would read a page of the book every day and it would give you a positive quote.
“It wasn’t actually anything to do with being injured specifically – although it did help during that time. It was just nice to have that positivity.
“It was Brad McKay, who plays for Inverness now, who suggested I get the book and we used to stick different pages up in the physio room! We just wanted to put a smile on faces.
“Some of them were cheesy, some were corny – but things like that can help you through it.”
Speaking to Cardiff City’s official website, the Bluebirds midfielder added: “I’ve worked very hard to be where I am, I’ve sacrificed a lot, but there’s more to life. You need to remember it [football] isn’t the end of the world.”
Now fully fit and an integral part of the Cardiff side which is aiming to seal a return to the English Premier League this term, Paterson has revealed that breaking his duck for Scotland would represent a new career highlight.
He has won 12 caps but is yet to feature under national team boss Steve Clarke – something he is desperate to remedy ahead of crucial Euro 2021 qualifiers and Nations League clashes in September and October.
Paterson added: “My debut for Scotland is probably the number one highlight of my career. I said from when I was fives years old that if I ever played for my national team, it would be the proudest moment of my life.
“I think it was the proudest moment in my family’s life too.
“I’d love to score a goal for Scotland – that would top just playing for Scotland!”