Keep your eyes off the finish line clock
Although it is advantageous to select a finish goal and work towards that desire, when you put all our focus on the finish line time you create unneeded anxiety. Don't put yourself through the stress of whether you will get that wished upon time or place. Those are outside circumstances that you have very little control over.
However, you do have control over the elements within training and racing. Focus more on the strategy that will get you to your desired goal. That training could include consistent weekly training, nutritious meals, and injury prevention strengthing. These elements prepare your body for the desires race goal.
When the race starts, keep your mind on the elements that you can control: controlled even start, hard mental push through the middle, and belief in yourself has you dig deep to give it your all in the last meters.
These accomplishments will be what you are really proud of when you look back at the race during your cool down. The finish time and place will be more of a reflection of preparation and hard work.
There will be races that everything clicks and you fly through the race. Those are great but are few and far between. Then there will be ones that you stuggled but are proud of your hard work and finishing attidude. This is a demonstration of character and patience.
Set your vision on the elements that make up the goal and your heart will be happy.