Athletes Who Intimidate Themselves Before Competing

Sports Confidence

Do You Make Comparisons to Other Athletes?

Do you (or your athletes) make comparisons to other athletes that might be bigger, stronger, or more talented than you? Do you worry when your opponents have more wins or a better record?

One athlete wrote, “I focus too much on other competitors instead of myself. I start to doubt myself during competition. How can I focus less on my competition and more on myself?”

One triathlete said this: “I spend too much time watching other athletes watch me.”

If you find yourself silently comparing yourself or your skills to other athletes, you’re not helping your confidence one bit…

In fact, you’re distracted by focusing on the wrong things when you practice and compete. I call this self-intimidation – when you give too much energy to your competitors!

I know for a fact that many athletes focus on their opponents’ size, speed, height, muscle mass, or equipment. Some athletes compare themselves to their own teammates, especially when they are competing for the same position.

Most of the time, you’ll make comparisons to others who you think are better or more skilled than yourself, which can only deflate your confidence.

Keep in mind: when you feel intimidated by the competition, it’s often your own doing and not the fault of a competitor or team trying to intimidate you. Here are few ways you might intimidate yourself:

  • Before competition, you worry too much about the competition and thinking about their weight, size, brawn and apparent confidence.
  • You might doubt your ability to do well against a certain competitor or team when you believe that a competitor is better than you.
  • You are overwhelmed by the excitement, commotion and stress of the competitive environment. Rather than thinking it’s fun, it makes you worried or tense.
  • You may also feel inferior to the competition when you compare yourself to other athletes, focusing on all that makes them better than you. You tell yourself there’s no way you can match up to them.

Here’s my mental game tips for today… Stop putting your opponents on a pedestal before competition begins!

When you put others on a pedestal, you look up to them and assume they are better than you. You are in awe of them, which is not the best mindset for the start the competition!

Several motocross racers that I’ve worked with over the years “place” themselves and others before the race starts. In their minds, they put other racers on the podium ahead of themselves.

To stop intimidating yourself with faulty thinking, you must stop making comparisons to other athletes. You must see yourself as a top athlete. Otherwise, you’ll have a harder time surpassing your opponents.

Your Confidence Coach,

Dr. Patrick Cohn

p.s. If you’re an exclusive Peaksports Network member, I just published a new e-book that shares all my mental strategies for overcoming self-intimidation titled, “Overcoming Self-Intimidation: Do You Intimidate Yourself by Making Comparisons to Others?”

Please login and download it on this page:

Overcoming Self-Intimidation in Sports for Athletes – Ebook

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