Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Blasting the Competition

Tennis racket and ball
I'm a competitive person. I would like to win everything. Seriously.
I want to win board games, arguments, and even sports that I am terrible at.
So ... I get disappointed. A lot. Because there are some things I'm just not going to win.
I play tennis, and we have matches every weekend. And I'm good. But I'm not great. In fact, if someone else came along and said they were good, chances are that they're better than me.
I have to stifle my competitive nature when I'm playing tennis for several reasons. First, because I'm just not that good, so it's pointless to be so competitive. Second and possibly the most important reason is because I play doubles, so I just cannot do that to my partner. I can't let them feel pressured by me, and I can't pressure myself. If I give off even the hint of being competitive, they will feel enormous pressure and ... this leads us to the third reason...
Tennis is probably 90% a mental game. What is happening in the player's mind is even more important than what is happening with my arms and legs. If I'm distracted, or frustrated or excited - it will affect my game. For example, this past weekend I was getting really frustrated in my match, because I knew we were better than those girls. I KNEW IT. And I just wasn't playing well enough! So what started happening? Did this anger and frustration give me a leg up? Heck no! I started double faulting on top of everything else. (In my opinion, the double fault is an indicator of a mental breakdown in a player. Because it's ALL on the player. It has nothing to do with the opponent).
I do a pretty good job of not being competitive when I'm playing tennis, because it will lead to a lot of losses. I'm pretty sure that if you asked any of my partners if I'm competitive, they would say that I'm not more competitive than the average person. But if you asked one of my friends, like Jennie or Lori, if I'm competitive, they would give a heartfelt and unanimous YES!

1 comment:

  1. YES! and i like you that way :-), but i understand it can't work like that in tennis