“You need to play with supreme confidence, or else you’ll lose again, and then losing becomes a habit.” – Joe Paterno
Negative thoughts and beliefs prevent athletes from achieving the success they dream about.
They are plagued with negative beliefs about their talents and ability to perform in game. These negative beliefs, self-labels, and irrational thoughts can overwhelm athletes often before the competition even begins. By the time the competition starts, lack of confidence is already a foregone conclusion.
So, how can you control your thoughts?
The truth is that most athletes make negative affirmations part of their regular routine. When you think repeatedly that you are not going to succeed in a particular competition, it is a negative affirmation. Affirmations, both negative and positive impact the football mental game.
Positive affirmations are like mantras. They have a sacred and spiritual force about them. They should not be normative or weak. Thoughts such as I ‘should’, ‘ought to’ or’ abstain from’ are normative.
Examples of negative affirmations are: ‘I can’t’ do this. It is ‘quite difficult’. On the other hand, affirmations should be forceful and determined, such as ‘I can’, ‘I will’, or ‘I am going to’. As mentioned above, your football mind is always adapting to your thought patterns and directs your organs to act accordingly.
Another great way to change your thoughts is to appreciate and enjoy what you already have. This is not to suggest that you should give up on developing your mental game skills. Enjoy whatever amount of success you have achieved instead of feeling sad about what you have not been able to achieve.
There is nothing wrong with always making higher benchmarks or goals, but failure to reach them should not spoil your enjoyment of what you already have.
When moving forward begins to feel difficult, remember that life is about growth, change, and stretching toward new experiences and accomplishments.
Gratitude and appreciation for yesterday and today need to turn into the energy necessary to approach new possibilities with excitement to build confidence.
Sometimes appreciating and remembering past successes and accomplishments can get in the way of moving forward to new experiences and opportunities. Self-confidence is about balance.
At one extreme, you are with low self-confidence. At the other end, you are over-confident. Getting this right is a matter of having the right amount of confidence, founded in reality and on your true ability. With the right amount of self-confidence, you will take informed risks, stretch yourself and try hard.
You don’t have to have already been a confident person to find and build confidence.
You are a worthy, deserving person. You must believe that! Being confident does not mean that you are conceited or narcissistic, and in fact being confident can make it that much easier for you to help others as you achieve your own goals.
Take the necessary steps to increase your football confidence and get you on your road to successful seasons.
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