More Fragile Than Glass… Stronger Than Rock

What is the one source that causes athletes to soar to new heights or fall to great depths all within their own mind? Confidence.

A Sport Psychology mentor once told me, “Confidence is the most fragile thing in sport.”

And for awhile, I believed it because I’d witnessed it countless times and experienced it in my own playing days.

Yet, as I’ve grown in my knowledge and application of the mental game with clients I now find myself doubting that statement.

Does confidence have to be that fragile?

My conclusion: It certainly can be. But it doesn’t have to be.

So how does one begin to shatter proof their confidence?

You might start by considering what you’re currently looking to for confidence. Then ask,  “Is this helping or hurting me to believe in myself and my abilities?”

We have the privilege each day of choosing to tear ourselves down or build ourselves up.   Here are some sure ways you may be shattering your own confidence:

Use the acronym CRUULL to decipher some common confidence killers:

  • Caring about the opinions of others
  • Results driven (outcomes, stats focused)
  • Unrealistic Expectations from self/others
  • Unknown
  • Lack of mental/physical preparation
  • Letting fear of failure be your motivation

Notice: Each of these are unstable.  Since we tend to become what we focus on…then focusing on any of these are sure to keep your confidence on the rocks.

Once you’ve discovered what’s killing your confidence you must decide what you’ll use to build it back up.

Here are 4 P’s in your control that if rock solid…become stable ground to build a firm foundation of confidence upon:

  • Person: A healthy identity of who you are and what you’re capable of NOW
  • Preparation
  • Process
  • Past Successes

Notice:  These are all in your control.

When you know who you are (rather than allow others to define you);

When you’ve prepared so well that all that’s left to do is compete;

When you’re more interested in mastering your process than focusing on results;

And when you rely on those past successes that give you the bold words to speak “I’ve done this before…I’m doing it again,”

…That’s when you’re building a firm foundation for confident performance no matter the circumstances.

There’s no need to have fragile confidence. 

But there’s a huge need to become aware of what you’re building your confidence on…glass or rock?

Choose to build your confidence on the stable things in your control rather than on the uncontrollables that constantly change.

Over the next few days we’ll discuss some of these in detail and the mindset shifts to help you solidify your confidence.

Dedicated to your thought life,

Ray III