Mental Toughness

Teaching mental toughness is an intangible skill, meaning there’s no physical drill or famous quote which can instantly instill this into your players, and if I was an inexperienced coach or a player looking for skill building information to improve my game, and saw this topic listed … I’d skip right over it.

Why? I am focused on physical skill building and I really have no idea, although I may think I do, what mental strength is or what it accomplishes, and besides I’ll worry about the mind games and strategy stuff after I perfect my “on field game.”

Consider these two quotes from professional baseball players:

  “Mental Toughness is doing whatever is necessary to get the job done including handling the demands of a tough workout and being able to work through the nearly unbearable pain.”

                                       and

  “Mental Toughness is not letting Anyone Ever Break You.”

If you’re a player you should be concerned about developing your metal game as well as your physical one, because one can not flourish without the other, as it’s a package deal with no shortcuts.

If you’re a coach you should readily recognize the role the mental attitude and control play in the game. You should realize this is the actual cornerstone on which you’ll build your team because without instilling this drive, your players will Never reach their full potential.

 Here’s a reality check … chances are 99.9% against you, that as a coach you’ll produce a major league baseball player from any of your teams, however, chances are 100% you’ll have an impact, an influence on every player you teach. Question is are you going to be a negative or a positive influence.

"I Will Never Surrender"

Mental skill is a “life skill” which will help every youngster you coach, cope with life’s struggles for his entire life. How you handle striking out with bases loaded will be an indicator of how you’ll react to being laid off from your job with a family to take care of.

 Here’s a reality check … chances are 99.9% against you, that as a coach you’ll produce a major league baseball player from any of your teams, however, chances are 100% you’ll have an impact, an influence on every player you teach. Question is are you going to be a negative or a positive influence.

 Mental toughness is a “life skill” which will help every youngster you coach, cope with life’s struggles for his entire life. How you handle striking out with bases loaded will be an indicator of how you’ll react to being laid off from your job with a family to take care of.

I’m going to teach you Mental Toughness, its affect on your game, both negative and positive, learn to identify it, break it down to bite sized pieces to digest and use it to improve our game.

"No Time For Fear"

 Define Toughness:

Ask 10 people to define mental toughness and you’ll probably receive 10 different answers, but I firmly believe building the right attitude and state of mind is the initial building block, from which confidence derives from knowing you are prepared and having an unshakable belief that you possess the skills to reach your goals.
 
“ Confidence is about who puts it on the line, who has the courage to compete like a warrior without fear of failure.” Jerry Lynch

Steps to Mental Toughness:

Step 1:  Pre-program your thoughts and mind, learning to focus with complete clarity, the things you want to happen, rather than the things you’re afraid may happen or go wrong.

Step 2: You must learn how to maintain your composure when you or a team mate makes a mistake and quickly let go of it before it wrecks your game, have the attitude if plan A doesn’t work, go to plan B. 

How many times have you seen a major league pitcher fall apart because his fielders made an error behind him and instead of being out of the inning, the bases are loaded. You must learn to shrug it off, because it can’t be changed. You don’t have to like it, but it is what it is, don’t let it wreck your game.

Step 3: Develop a System of Calming and Organizing Your Mind, which may seem a huge task considering pre-game jitters, but before every game meditate, pray, talk to yourself, whatever it takes, to clear your mind of all other clutter and problems which may be affecting your life.

  Know that once you step over that white line you are totally committed to playing and winning that game.


Practice these 3 steps, embrace them and know you’re well on your way to becoming mentally tough and nobody or nothing can break you.


Mental Toughness to Sports Motivation

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