The following article was written for PLAYSOCCER Magazine (pg 14-15) published by AYSO.
How do you define success?
Is it by winning? By beating another? Is it by achieving your goals? This is a question that every athlete, coach, parent, employee, employer, and performer should ask themselves. I think most of you would agree that confidence is a major component of performance. High confidence can result in high performance, and vice versa. How you define success can have an affect on your confidence level.
Let me explain.
If you are the kind of person who measures success by winning and losing, you are probably very disappointed with a loss, which in turn affects your confidence and motivation. Because you’re so caught up with losing, you’re missing out on the many positives and opportunities for growth that come along with it.
Try this: Adopt the mindset that it’s WINNING AND LEARNING not winning and losing.
Taking a step back to recognize that there are positives that come along with losing can have an important influence on your confidence level. Changing what success means can change everything, and give you a better perspective about outcomes. You can and should be learning from every experience, win or loss, triumph or setback. Michael Jordan has a great outlook on success...
"I've missed more then 9,000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."
Don’t get me wrong, everyone wants to and should want to win, but winning doesn’t have to be everything. If success is defined only by winning or other external factors, most of us are probably disappointed a lot. Such wonderful growth can come from losing. Winning is a byproduct of many other things like preparation, effort, and hard work. Even when we do those things, we still may not win. So try not to get caught up in the notion that winning means success. Success comes in many shapes forms, and our definition of success is a choice.
Over the next week, take some time to evaluate how you define success. Ask yourself what’s most important to you. Winning? Beating others? Achieving your goals? Self-improvement? Overcoming a challenge? By recognizing how you define success, you can begin to make changes to your performance, and see a difference in your motivation and confidence level. The key to all of this is that you are in control. How you define success is a choice.
A good book to check out about success is John Wooden and Jay Carty’s Coach Wooden's Pyramid of Success: Building Blocks For a Better Life.
“Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to become the best of which you are capable.” – John Wooden
Hey! I'm Katie, and I specialize in Mental Performance. I believe greatly in mindset and the role it plays in life.