When we play hockey, most of us want to do our best and when we put out the effort, the game doesn’t always go our way. There can be many times when we can look back and say; “I should have done that, I can’t believe I didn’t score, I wish I would have been in better position” and so on. We also get a lot of tips from our teammates and try to implement the changes.
The hardest part of hockey can be to change our game for the better. It is because when we play, we react, we act unconsciously. We play along with our habits. A common mistake can be not to see the play well enough that we miss out on creating opportunities.
How do you teach someone to keep his head up?
It’s all about having confidence in the moments of hockey, that’s the difference between making something happen or coming close. That’s the difference between not scoring goals and scoring them. That’s the difference on being on a hot streak and just playing average.
The thing about confidence, we can’t just have it by thinking it, and if that somehow works, it only works momentarily. It is not about our thinking but about the mindset we have and that has to come naturally. We cannot force confidence on ourselves, it has to be earned. But what we can do is to eliminate the obstacles of confidence.
What interferes the most with our confidence in sports is our fears. Fear can come in many forms such as intimidation, fear of failure, fear of losing the puck, fear of getting hurt and so on.
A great way to start is to stop being so hard on ourselves when we screw up. This rewards fear which does not improve confidence. Then to let go of that, we have to understand why we are so hard on ourselves,
what do we really have to prove and why?
We also love success in sports and when it happens it is a big boost of confidence but yet we don’t want to let that get to our heads because this will put pressure on ourselves for next time. Because we love success, we can be hard on ourselves when we miss opportunities and again this will put pressure. Pressure enhances the fear of failure which is another obstacle to confidence.
It is also possible that after suffering a recent injury or just the discomfort of pain itself we can play under that fear. And again, not good for confidence. We can also bring intimidation on ourselves when we focus too much on the other team rather than our game.
Confidence gets rewarded the most when we are not playing for our own ideals. These ideals we have create all the pressure and fears. This means we do best when our minds are free and therefore having fun. This is when we are most creative and make the best decisions.
If we want to improve our game and open up to confidence the best thing to do is to free our minds from these fears. If we are under performing during a game, our conditioning will cause us to push ourselves harder and try harder not to make mistakes.
What happens is that our minds are controlling our actions more than ever, our minds are not free and we cannot get into the free flow of the game where we do best. If we want to change our performance, it is best to take a few deep breaths and release the negative energy inside us that is causing the underperformance.
Understanding how our minds work with hockey can help us understand many other situations of life. When we learn to improve our lives we can also bring this change into sports and perform better. The key is to know how to deal with fear. When we can do that, not only can we improve ourselves in sports but we also can do better in our lives.
My passion in life has been to learn to free my mind and enjoy the higher level of consciousness that comes with that. My best success has come when I have learned how to effectively and quickly overcome my fears that hide in my subconscious.
I can teach you to do the same without going through the hard lessons I had to learn. You can apply this to hockey as well as everything else. As I started doing this I won championships and MVPs within the leagues of my level of skill.