Staying Confident When Hitting
The power of choice is one of the most important mental game abilities that ball players possess. Much of my work with athletes involves teaching players that they have the ability to make good choices with their mental game.
In fact, everything I do in sport psychology revolves around showing players how to make good choices in their thinking.
You have the power to make choices, too. You have the ability to choose your attitude, choose to be confident and stay focused on the task. Making the right choices is important in all of baseball and especially in hitting.
A relevant story that illustrates the choices that confront you is a question that came up when I was working a high school hitter.
He said the following:
“I’m standing in the batters box at 0 for 3 so far in the game, and I wonder if I can get a hit! I started to get frustrated that I’m not hitting well. What should I think when this happens?”
My first response to this player was that he has two choices.
The reality is that his last at-bats did not lead to a hit.
I said the first choice and the wrong way to think is that you’re not hitting well today, the gods are not on your side. Every at-bat is a failure.
This choice only causes you to become frustrated with your hitting and you blame yourself for not getting a hit, and think that you will continue to do the same!
I suggested to this player that the better choice is to know that you are putting in quality at-bats, but the outcome is not what you want. You’ll get a hit. You’ve got to stay patient and wait for it to happen, but nothing is happening YET.
You, too, have to stay confident, patient, and believe that you will get a hit if you stick to one at-bat at a time!
Let go of the past.
You must make this simple choice.
Do you want to give yourself a chance of getting a hit in the later innings?
Of course you do. Then you’d better make the right choice to give yourself a chance to get a hit! Forget about your past at-bats and stay confident with each new at-bat.
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