The brain is the most powerful muscle in our body. The brain must continuously send messages to your body to keep everything working properly. In that being said, I wanted to write about the power of the mind and the need for having a high a growth mindset instead of a fixed mindset.
Your mindset is critical not only in Soccer but life. Your mindset will be the foundations for your success in the game of soccer so if you don’t learn anything else from us, learn that having a growth mindset will change your life!
So you might be wondering what is a fixed mindset and what is a growth mindset? A growth mindset, “A growth mindset comes from the belief that your basic qualities are things you can cultivate through effort. Yes, people differ significantly - in aptitude, talents, interests, or temperaments - but everyone can change and grow through application and experience.”
A fixed mindset comes from the belief that your qualities are carved in stone - who you are is who you are, period. Characteristics such as intelligence, personality, and creativity are fixed traits, rather than something that can be developed.
This is a must read for all athletes, because it gives great insight into the mind and how we need to change the way we think. B changing the way we think, it can help you get the most out of soccer practice , can help you perform better in games, and can also lead you on the path to be a pro soccer player!
Here are the four most important ideas I took away when reading “ Mindset.”
1. Your Physical Skills can be developed far more than what you’re born with.
Don’t think t you can’t do something in Soccer because you weren’t born with that ability. This is far from the truth, and even those we think are “ naturally” talented, still put in work. Don’t believe me, read the book, Talent is Overrated” by Geoff Colvin, and you’ll change your mind. You have to work at it and care if you want to see results.
2. Focus on learning over achievement.
When you have a growth mindset, it makes it easier to clinch on to things that might have driven you crazy in the past: challenge in the game, struggling to pass better, criticism from your coach, or setbacks because of injury.When you take control of the tight stuff, you allow yourself to understand your potential and all that you can be a Soccer player. Instead of depending on luck or “God Given” talent, focus on developing your skills and abilities, and learning from your efforts.
3.The growth mindset makes it worth it, the outcome is irrelevant
I am a firm believer of this because sometimes the journey is the reward. When I decided to quit soccer, I considered myself a failure at the time. I told myself I didn’t accomplish the things I wanted to accomplish and because of that, I did not have success in the game. I talked with Quincy a lot because he is my best friend and knows a lot about me and the game of soccer. It was until I spoke with him, and reread mindset that I changed from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. Quincy let me know that the outcome didn’t matter and that the journey was the reward. The countless sacrifices I made when I was a younger kid, the work I did on and off the field, the places I got to see because of soccer, the relationships I built because of soccer were far more important than playing for the national team or getting 200 , appearances.
4. The Growth Mindset will allow You to Love What You’re Doing.
This is so important with how you approach the game of soccer and life. When you have a fixed mindset, you are obsessed with the one thing, and that is the result. So in Soccer that could look obsessed with just scoring goals, or obsessed with just winning. When you have only room to think like that, you begin to try real hard and not have a course of action. When I was younger, all I cared about was the end game, and that is not healthy because there is much more involved when it comes to scoring goals and winning games. When premier athletes or leaders have a growth mindset, they focus on the process and the growth. Quincy is a perfect example of this notion. Quincy was never highly recruited, or a player anyone initially cared about. He was always the underdog, and to him, that was okay because of his mindset. Quincy understood that he needed to focus on the process and continue to grow as a player if he wants to have a great career. Quincy has had a long career that many people in his position never reach because they’re worried about the wrong things. Make sure not to understand that in between A and Z are a lot of letters to your goals, focus on that and be open to feedback and learn as much as you can.
When I was a player, I struggled with my mindset, and that is normal. These shift in your mindset aren’t going to be over night, so you have to be patient and work at it. The reason why I struggled with mindset was that I didn’t have guidance or a plan. When things weren’t going my way, I would get upset and lose focus. Losing focus in soccer is counterproductive. Soccer is a game that requires high focus and having an ability to pay close attention to the details!
The mind more than anything is important in your success on the field. Think about it! You’re playing a game in the blistering sun. You are playing well thus far, but come the 70th minute you think you can’t go on. You feel yourself moving slower, your touches are off, you’re late to the ball, and you even pick up a yellow card (there is a reason why you see more yellow cards later in the game, concentration) This is disastrous and never a good feeling. What happens next, you’re subbed out. After being subbed out, you sit on the bench and grab some water. After a few minute, you’re upset with yourself because you feel fine and feel that you could have gone the whole 90. The reason why you didn’t go the full 90 was that of lack of mental concentration and mindset. Once the mistakes started to compound, you never took a second to give yourself a rest. You didn’t have a plan to get through the tough times, and like I said this is normal.
The older I got, the more I consciously worked on my mindset (I developed a plan), the better I got when dealing with difficult situations on the field, the better I got as a player. I became more composed and a better all around player.
Continue to adopt this mindset and watch your game go to another level!