Using Sports Psychology to Get Back on Track
How is it that, for some ball players, one bad game can cause them to lose confidence affecting future performances?
Some ball players have great difficulty bouncing back from a bad game. One bad game leads to another and another and another… These players feel stuck and their confidence and motivation seem to slowly erode.
The cycle of bad game, lower confidence, waning motivation, bad game, seems hard to break.
That downward spiral can make a player feel as if they are losing control over their play on the field.
This is the exact experience of a player who recently responded to our Softball and Baseball Mental Toughness Survey:
“How do you develop self-confidence so you are not so nervous before a game and stop the negative self-talk about previous performances?”
You have identified three interrelated mental components that affect performance: confidence, degree of nerves, and self-talk.
According to your experience, after a bad game, you relive mental images in your mind. You become overly critical to the point where it chips away at your confidence.
Thoughts, such as, “I can’t field the ball cleanly,” “I can’t make accurate throws” or “I hope I don’t lose the game again for my team” dominate your mindset.
Your negative self-talk creates anxiety due to your fear of having repeated bad games. All these circumstances keep you trapped in an endless loop of bad performances.
Breaking out of this loop requires you take back control of your game by directing your focus to the things you can control.
Too many other factors you cannot control such as, past performances, the opposing pitcher, the lineup, etc. Trying to control these uncontrollable factors is futile and will only lead to further frustration and anxiety.
For example, Chicago White Sox pitcher Reynaldo López is trying to bounce back from a career-worst 5.38 ERA in 2019 and he is doing so with the help of the team’s sport psychologist.
Instead of wins, losses and personal stats, López is focusing on his preparation, knowing that consistent preparation will lead to positive results.
LOPEZ: “My goal right now or my focus right now is in my work. Do my work, try to do my work every day as best as you can, and the results are going to be there. That was one of the things I didn’t have last year… That’s something I have this year. That’s something that’s going to be the key for me to have success this year.”
If you want high stable confidence, focus on your mental and physical preparation and years of practice and play.
If you are looking to lower your level of nerves, focus on your mental and physical preparation.
If you are searching for a pathway to improve your self-talk, focus on your mental and physical preparation.
If you want to bounce back quickly from a bad game or increase your consistency, the solution is to focus on your mental and physical preparation.
Bouncing Back Quickly from a Bad Game
“What can I improve today?” Ask yourself this question every day before practice then focus on that aspect of your game to your fullest capacity.
It is easy to show up to practice but few players actually engage in focused mental and physical preparation during practice.
Treat each game as a new opportunity for success rather than accepting that the old “broken record” will play out.
Get The Mental Edge For Baseball and Softball Players!
Do you (or your athletes) lack full confidence in your skills when you step on the field as if your game disappears at game time?
Do you lose composure easily after you make your first error of time game?
Do you feel embarrassed after striking out and carry this with you for longer than one inning?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, check out The Mental Edge For Baseball And Softball Players!
Boost your (or your athletes mental) toughness! Learn 8 mental toughness lessons to help ball players improve confidence, focus and composure.
Download your copy TODAY and start boosting your mental toughness!
What are baseball mental game customers saying?
“Dr. Cohn, I’ve been tearing it up lately!!! Every single thing you taught me works perfectly in every situation I’ve been in. I’ve been so into every game and focusing on the process and not the outcomes and everything falls right into place . In the playoffs I’m 5-7 with 2 run home runs and 5 RBIs. I feel great at the plate and focusing is a breeze now. I just wanted to thank you for everything and keep you posted with how everything was going.”
~Jalen Phillips, College Baseball Player
“With your help, I have been able to deal with stress and pressure of the game of baseball more efficiently. I have learned to help me keep my focus and disregard negative thoughts and energies. This process focus will keep me from getting my head in the way of my performance, from working against myself. Thanks for your help. I look forward to speaking with you again.”
~Keith Donnell, college baseball player
“Thank you very much for taking the time to speak with our team. It was greatly appreciated and really helped a lot. I found myself implementing your teachings in our first practice right after you left. I really enjoyed the way you implemented already known ideas, but gave us a different way of viewing it. Thank you.”
~Amber Prosser, Clark College Softball
Boost Your Self-Confidence And Focus With Expert Mental Game Coaching!
Master mental game coach Dr. Patrick Cohn can help you overcome your mental game issues with personal coaching.
You can work with Dr. Patrick Cohn himself in Orlando, Florida or via Skype, FaceTime, or telephone. Call us toll free at 888-742-7225 or contact us for more information about the different coaching programs we offer!
What are our mental coaching students saying?
“As a college softball coach I experience great pleasure in helping youth league coaches develop their young players. As reversal of that process, I, as the student, look to experts like yourself to give me the “mechanics” of sports psychology so that I may better impart my knowledge to the players and coaches. Your contribution spreads like wildfire and helps hundreds of youngsters as well as us “oldies.” Thanks for your contribution–it means a lot.”
~Tom Moore, College Softball Coach
“A quick note to let you know how effective your programs worked for my son who is 17 and plays varsity baseball in VA. In late 2009, I ordered the Relaxed Athlete program for my son because I saw he was pressing too hard at the plate and had disappointing results for the 2009 season. Thanks to your programs, my son now has a completely new approach to the game of baseball (and school) and it’s more fun for him now. He made all-district player at his position and hit .443 this season. A complete 180 degree turn around from last year.”
~Mark M., sports parent
“Dr. Cohn has put together a program that has enabled myself and our players to approach the mental game in a systematic way that is easy to use and apply. Our awareness level has greatly increased.”
~Marty Hunter, Head Baseball Coach George Fox University
*Testimonials found on this site are examples of what we have done for other clients, and what some of our clients have said about us. However, we cannot guarantee the results in any case. Your results may vary and every situation is different. No compensation was provided for these testimonials.