“Believe in yourself and you will be unstoppable.”
We have so many incredibly talented athletes within our organization that come in for lessons who are determined, strong, diligent, and smart! But they are holding themselves back with their mental game. Somewhere along the way of their softball journey, they lost their self-confidence, self-trust, and overall just believing in themselves and what they are capable of. Instead, they are afraid of failure, embarrassment, and being seen as mediocre or less.
Where and when did our athletes lose their confidence and have it replaced with fear? Some have lost it from having coaches who don’t believe in them, coaches who are negative, being on a team where their teammates don’t include them, are mean to them, or have bad attitudes. Sometimes it is their parents who influence their loss of confidence through harsh words, negative perspectives, and misunderstanding of their athlete’s actions, words, and beliefs. Or maybe they had a bad practice, game, or season that played a role in adding fear over their confidence. Many people, experiences, and situations can be the start and influence of causing your athlete to no longer believe in themselves.
No matter what caused their confidence to slip away, it is our job as parents, coaches, and role models to help them believe in themselves again! If you were the cause in the past, fix it! If your athlete is on a team or has a coach that is causing it, ask questions! If your athlete is being bullied, speak up! If your athlete talks to herself negatively, give her a new perspective! Our athletes are at a sensitive time in their lives, and we need to be the ones who are looking out for them, doing what is best for them, but overall believing in them and making sure that they believe in themselves and what they are capable of!
Whether you see or hear your athlete’s lack of self-confidence or not, start talking to your athlete, ask questions, and just pay attention to what they say, how they act, and what is being said to them. Yes, they have to learn to stand on their own, but they also need guidance, perspective, and a positive influence that believes in them, cares about them and cares about their present and future.
“Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.”