A Short Letter To The Young Player.
Football at any level is a game of confidence. When you have confidence in yourself your skills will automatically shine. On the other hand, when your confidence dips, you are less likely to perform up to your capabilities.
It is important to always believe in yourself.
Always feed yourself with positive self-talk.
“I will succeed”
“I am a good player”
“I will do well today”
Positive self-talk and using success statements about your performance helps your confidence.
Please remove words like can’t, never, and impossible from your vocabulary and, instead, replace those words with “I can” and “I will”.
Tell yourself that you are going to play and train well and that you will succeed in your goals.
Always remind yourself of the physical, technical and mental skills that you are blessed with which make you a unique footballer and athlete.
Don’t dwell on mistakes.
Trust me, dwelling on mistakes and losing focus won’t help you. It will only cause you to lose trust in yourself and to start doubting yourself.
Don’t be afraid to try and please don’t be afraid to mess up every now and then. It is normal to slip up.
· Virgil van Dijk isn’t afraid to play out from defence.
· Lionel Messi never hesitates to attack and take players on, even when the odds appear against him.
· Cristiano Ronaldo is never scared to shoot from any angle.
· Luka Modric isn’t afraid to take his time in the midfield hustle and bustle, look up, and play a pin-point pass.
You will realise that, more often than not, things tend to work out when you have conviction in your actions.
Confidence separates good players from great players.
It is amazing how well you can perform when you believe in your abilities and have a positive mind-set.
Imagine and think about your big moments and successes before the game. Visualise and mentally rehearse successful plays before competition. Fill your mind with positive situations. Imagine yourself performing at your best and believe you will execute well — scoring a goal or making a heroic goal-saving tackle, for example.
Visualising helps to grow your confidence.
The equation is simple, and this one is easy to remember: Confidence + Trust = Success.
Show your confidence and trust in games and training:
· Be positive
· Be active
· Be vocal
· Support your teammates
Doing this creates a positive cycle not just for you, but others as well.
Your body language and positive vibes help you feel good and they boost your performance.
When you feel good you play good.
As they say, your mind is like a garden. What grows depends on what you plant. Plant flowers and they will grow, cultivate weeds and that is what you will get.
Always try to plant positive seeds and thoughts. Be confident and believe in yourself.
In the words of the great Michael Jordan: “You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.”