The interesting thing with the fear is that it’s by far the biggest handicap we humans are born with. When I was younger I use to play soccer/football without fear and today I will let you know how I manage to play without fear.
Soccer/Football is supposed to be fun, but we hear about more and more young players who feel that they play extremely well at training and then don’t perform at the same level in matches because they feel the pressure and are afraid of making mistakes.
An American writer Elbert Hubbard once said ” The greatest mistake a man could ever make is to be afraid of making one”
I’ve tried it myself, and if you like that as well, today I’ll give you some advice on what you can do to get over fear and be more confident when you’re playing soccer/football.
Why Fear is Bad?
The worst thing you can do when you go on the pitch is to be afraid. Terrified to mess up, or frightened to make the wrong decision.
Who knows, maybe that even cost your team a goal.
Maybe you care a lot about what other people think about you. But if you’re just looking to survive when you go onto the pitch and get it over with, you make it ten times harder for yourself.
Because if you play with fear, you won’t go for a goal, you won’t try the dribble, you won’t go for the optimistic passes, and will just play a safe negative game. So let’s try and see how to get rid of that fear.
We’ll split it into two areas, mental and practical, that you can work on to boost that self-confidence.
Accept Your Mistakes
The first thing you can do is to deal with your mistakes by accepting them. Not that you should live with screwing up, and it’s great to demand a lot from yourself, but you make a few mistakes that shouldn’t ruin your entire game.
But don’t stop playing, don’t run around sulking, and stop making excuses, because nothing good will come of that.
Your teammates will most likely get annoyed and shout even more at you, which in the end will only make you doubt yourself even more.
Instead, you need to show yourself and your teammates that even if nothing else works, you’ll fight as hard as you can for the team to be an asset.
You can explore your blunders later, so forget them when you’re on the pitch, buckle up and work even harder.
It’s important to remember that you failed because you tried. You have the courage to try because you’re a good player.
Self-Image is Extremely Important
Your self-image is extremely important because and it will help if you knock yourself down every time you make a mistake, you’ll see yourself as a player who always screws up.
If you do that, how are your teammates supposed to see you any different?
No, Instead see yourself as a player who is brave enough to try risky things, who’s confident, and who learns from mistakes.
If you are a little insecure, be positive, even when others make mistakes. Sure, it’s an easy way to shift the focus onto someone else screwing up.
But at the end of the day, being negative and yelling at your teammates isn’t very constructive.
Instead, encourage them to get back up and try again and there’s a good chance that they’ll then change their tone towards you when you make blunders as well.
There are also practical things you can do to improve your confidence and the first thing is repetition.
Repetition creates muscle memory. You don’t have to worry about tying your boots or taking a sip of water because you’ve done it a million times before.
So if there are things you want to be better at, repeat them over and over and over again. Because when the time then comes, you react on instinct.
Even if there’s still a little bit of fear left in you, it won’t have time to affect you because you’ve already done it.
But if all this mental work and repetition hasn’t quite been enough and you’re still in the match feeling a lack of confidence and a little bit of fear, you can turn to look at getting easy wins.
Set Yourself a Goal
Set yourself a goal, whether that’s nailing the next five passes, beating an opponent, winning the next physical duel, or something very specific that you can easily achieve.
Getting easy wins will build your confidence, meaning that you can focus a little more on being a good teammate, communicating, and trying more audacious stuff.
A win is a win no matter what. So even if they’re easy wins, take them if you need to boost your confidence a bit more in the next games.
So in other words, playing with fear can cripple you as a Soccer player.
But if you remember to deal with your mistakes well, get a better self-image, go for the easy wins and do a ton of repetitions.
I hope that now you know how to play soccer/football without Fear.
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