Finding the Positive in Every Game
Is there such a thing as a positive loss in soccer?
Many players think of performances in “black or white” terms… A win is good, a loss is bad… I played great or I had a horrible game.
But there is an entire gray area when it comes to performance, such as the following examples:
Your team was dominating the entire game but gave up two goals late in the match to lose what should have been an easy victory.
The positive takeaways could be lessons learned such as; the need for better communication among teammates, focusing on closing out a game or motivation to not take any team lightly.
As goalie, you gave up three goals in the first half of the game. Two of the goals you were caught out of position.
In the second half, you played the angles much better, made three spectacular saves and shut out the opposition. The fact that you were able to make adjustments at halftime is a great, positive takeaway.
Your team played the defending champions who were undefeated the previous year and beat your team 6-0 last season.
This year, your team lost a close match 2-1 but dictated the pace of the game and had several shots on goal but their goalie made some outstanding saves.
The positive takeaways are that your team has improved dramatically and played with great confidence.
Losses and mistakes can be difficult to take but those performances do not need to be devastating.
All performances are opportunities to learn and grow your game. In order to improve, you should look for the positive takeaways and not focus solely on the outcome of the competition.
This “positive takeaway” mindset is how the University of Penn women’s soccer team approached their 5-1 loss in their season opener against No. 3 Stanford University.
This early season match up was the first time Penn played such a highly-ranked team in its program history.
It would have been easy for Penn to become devastated losing by four goals.
Penn could have taken the loss as a sign that they are not capable of competing against top-ranked competition. These two perspectives would only serve to chip away at the team’s confidence and zap their motivation to improve.
Penn chose to see the game in a different light. Senior Penn goalie Kitty Qu’s positive takeaway was the team’s ability to keep looking for scoring chances, even being down 5-0 and scoring with minutes left in the game against one of the best teams in the country.
QU: “One of the biggest takeaways is that we scored a goal. I think that it shows that we can compete on the highest level.”
Penn head coach Nicole Van Dyke viewed the loss as a necessary component of growing as a team. Also, Van Dyke noted another positive takeaway as the team continued to battle throughout the entirety of the game.
VAN DYKE: “We have to be able to play those big games. It is a massive growing experience for us… Our girls walked away just confident that we have so much room to improve, but we just ran 90 minutes with the top team in the country.”
Every game has positive takeaways, whether it is something you did well or recognizing something you need to improve upon.
By adopting this mindset, you will keep your confidence growing and your game improving.
Find the Positive in Every Game: Win or Lose
Each experience can be a teachable moment. Instead of merely ruminating over mistakes and losses, find 2-3 positives from each performance and 1-2 lessons learned from each game.
Every game is an opportunity to evaluate your team and improve your performance for the next game.
Discover Mental Game Secrets to Soccer Confidence!
Does your confidence seem to disappear when you go from practice to games?
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Soccer Confidence: Mental Toughness Strategies For a Competitive Edge
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Learn the top eight mental game lessons for soccer players to boost your mental game and improve consistency. You’ll learn how to mentally prepare for games to performing under pressure to building unstoppable confidence!
Soccer Confidence: Mental Toughness Strategies For a Competitive Edge
What are our mental game program customers saying?
With the mental tools my soccer mental training program has given me, I can say with full confidence I am on my way of signing a better professional contract.”
~ Lucas Gonzales, Professional Soccer Player in Australia
“My son Alex recently completed your Soccer Mental Training program. I can tell you that he has improved his overall confidence and positive approach before, during, and after games. His stress level regardless of the situation is consistently at a positive and healthy level.”
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Boost Your Self-Confidence And Focus With Expert Mental Game Coaching!
If you’re a top performer during practice but find yourself under-performing in competition, the most likely culprit holding you back is your mental game. In fact, many athletes struggle with the same problem….
Master mental game coach Dr. Patrick Cohn can help you overcome your mental game issues with personal coaching.
Meet with us via Skype, phone, FaceTime, or GoTo Meeting. With today’s video technology, we are able to connect with athletes and coaches all over the globe.
Mental toughness coaching helps serious athletes like you to uncover the beliefs and attitudes that keep you from performing to your potential. You’ll learn mental game strategies to perform at your peak more often, overcoming performance plateaus and lack of consistency
Call us toll free at 888-742-7225 or contact us for more information about the different coaching programs we offer!
What are our mental coaching students saying?
“Michelle had the best weekend of soccer she has ever played. I’m not just saying this because you have been working with her (I promise!). She was relaxed, did not get frustrated with herself or teammates, never once ‘shut down’ and actually smiled a couple of times. Numerous parents noticed a difference in her composure and attitude. A college coach sent an email last night expressing interest–commenting on her level of play during the weekend. Thanks again for EVERYTHING…Michelle is in a very good place right now!”*
~Diana, Michelle’s Mother
“Adam is truly one of your success stories. We purchased the CD program for him last year around this time. He is a soccer goalie and needed more confidence. The change was dramatic and he still goes through the exercises before a big game.”
*Testimonials found on this site are examples of what we have done for other clients, and what some of our clients have said about us. However, we cannot guarantee the results in any case. Your results may vary and every situation is different. No compensation was provided for these testimonials.
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