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Why Hamilton wanted to show 'vulnerability' amid Mercedes struggles

With Mercedes having experienced some tough times recently, Lewis Hamilton has opened up about the "important" conversations he has shared with members of the team.

Lewis Hamilton has explained why he felt it was important to show "vulnerability" with his Mercedes team following their recent struggles. Off the back of winning eight consecutive Constructors' Championships, the Silver Arrows slipped backwards in 2022 after facing issues with their W13 car. Some of these problems have persisted for the squad into 2023, and Hamilton feels that part of his role has been to keep his colleagues motivated. "I think last year, coming off of a difficult ending of a season, everyone [was] kind of still feeling the previous end of year," Hamilton told Australian broadcaster Fox Sports . "Keeping everyone's spirits high is [about] how you show up. It's your energy, it's your mood when you do arrive, and how you greet people and how you show the people like, 'Okay, damn, he's with us today. He's on it.'"

Hamilton: I'm not perfect

However, Hamilton admits that he is not always at his best, something that he feels is important to show to members of the team. "I'm not perfect," the seven-time World Champion said. "Some days I'm tired, I'm groggy and I'm not all there, as some people are when you just arrive into your office. And I think also showing vulnerability is really important, particularly as it's a very male-dominated sport, and a lot of these engineers don't show emotion. "Whether you're on a high or you're low, they're calm, but deep down inside they can feel something, and it's showing them [that] it's okay to feel that, and it's okay if you're feeling down, share it with us, we'll get there. "And just having those conversations with people I think is something that I've really learned to appreciate, and I think I've broken through to a lot of people."

Learning about self-forgiveness

As part of this process, Hamilton says that he had to learn about himself. "Firstly, it took a long time for me to have to do that for myself," the Briton said. "And that's understanding about self-forgiveness, self love, which I didn't have when I was a kid, I didn't have when I first got here. "I was just so tough on myself when I failed, and you fail a million times more than you succeed, and so it's learning how to just forgive yourself and move on. Once I learned how to do that for myself, then I could do that for others. "I have always had compassion for others out there and for things I've seen happening for people out there in the world, but not having any compassion for myself. "As soon as I was able to do that, then I think through that – particularly through that part last year, the difficult season we had last year – then I was able to then do that for those around me. "[I could then] be like, 'Come on, guys, this is where we're going. Get off your asses. We're gonna get there.' And that for me is even better than the driving part. That's being a real teammate."

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