Commitment to Your Team’s Success
Do you feel a part of your team when you rarely get playing time? Do you see yourself as a bench warmer and nothing more?
Being in a back-up role on a team can hurt an athlete’s confidence. When you don’t see a lot of playing time, you feel you don’t contribute anything to the team.
You see yourself as not having enough talent or ability to play at a high level and compare yourself to your teammates, making you feel “less than” or “not good enough.”
Your effort in practice is less than your best. After all, you never play. You may even feel the team doesn’t need you or that you were just lucky to make the team.
If you are on a team, then you have a role on the team. Understanding your role and knowing that your role can change increases motivation and confidence.
If you change your mindset, you will see more opportunities come your way. You should have the mindset that you are a competitive athlete, not a bench warmer. As a competitive athlete, your role is to compete.
When you push yourself in practice, not only do you improve your skills, but you also make your teammates push to new levels too.
When you work hard in practice, you contribute to building team cohesion, increase the motivation of the team, improve team efficacy, and boost the overall performance of the team.
Quarterback Joe Flacco signed a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles for the 2021 season. Second-year incumbent quarterback Jalen Hurts is slated to be the starter but that hasn’t deterred Flacco’s mindset to compete for the starting role.
FLACCO: “I really just want to come in and show people that I can play football. I don’t care what level of playing that is. Whether you’re the first-string, second-string, third-string guy on the team, you still want to prove to everybody on the team that you can play football and that you deserve a spot on this team in some capacity. That’s really what my job is.”
Worrying about being a starter, second-string or third-string is not Flacco’s focus. Flacco has the mindset of an elite competitive athlete. Flacco is focused on competing in training camp, competing in drills and competing in games.
You don’t control the number of minutes you play. The line-up is the choice of your coach. You do choose the level of commitment and focus you bring to practice, training and games.
The goal of a team is to win games. When you make the choice to compete, you contribute to your team’s success.
John Wooden once said that he had a better relationship with his bench players because those players made the starters better and had to be ready to come off the bench.
How to Contribute to the Success of your Team:
Define your role on the team in terms of how you can contribute given your role on the team. For example, what intangibles do you bring to the team atmosphere? Are you positive? Do you work hard? Do you push others to excel?
Team success is achieved through competing in practice. If your teammates are not being pushed in practice, your team will not be prepared to play to its potential.
Related Articles on Mental Game:
- Focus on What You Can Control in Sports
- Quarterback Jalen Hurts Ready to Compete, Even on the Bench
- How to Stay Composed When You Make Mistakes
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