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Healthy Mindset 07

Chapter 7: Maintaining Confidence in Yourself

It's easy to lose confidence in yourself. We all have off days and bad moments where we don't feel our best. But it's important to remember that these moments are just a part of life, and they don't define who you are as a person or as an athlete. It's also important to remember that your confidence is something that you have to work on every day. When it comes to winning, Mark Messier knows a thing or two. A six- time Stanley Cup champion, Messier is the second most prolific playoff points scorer of all time. He's also a two-time most valuable player in the NHL, a 15-time all-star, and the only person ever to captain two different teams to Stanley Cup championships—the Edmonton Oilers (even after the departure of his great friend Wayne Gretzky) and the New York Rangers. Simply put, Messier is a winner. But he's also so much more than that. He's a leader, motivator, and an inspiration to everyone who has ever had the privilege of playing with him or watching him play. He's the epitome of class, competitiveness, and character. In other words, he's everything you want in a hockey player—and more. So, it's no wonder that, when it comes to winning, Mark Messier is always at the top of his game. But even players as prolific as Messier struggle with confidence. Everyone struggles with developing and maintaining confidence. "Even at the peak of my career, I would struggle at times. I was fortunate enough that we had sports psychology seminars at a very early age, basically the first year of my career when I was 18 years old. I kept it with me my whole career," Messier said in an interview. "Self- confidence is huge, and a big part of that is self-talk—when things aren’t going well, not to be negative. You have to figure out what went wrong, so you’re able to move on from any failure" (Smith, 2022). What causes you to lose confidence in yourself?

Confidence Comes from Within Confidence comes from within. It is a state of mind that allows you to trust yourself and your abilities. When you are confident, you feel good about yourself and your abilities, and this inner feeling shows through in your interactions with others. Maintaining confidence can be challenging, especially when things don't go your way. However, it is important to remember that everyone experiences setbacks and failures. What matters is how you respond to them. Here are some ways to maintain confidence in yourself: Believe in yourself. This may sound like common sense, but it's important to remind yourself that you are capable and competent. When you catch yourself doubting your abilities, reframe your thinking and remind yourself of your past successes. Be prepared. One way to build confidence is to be prepared for whatever situation you find yourself in. If you know what to expect and are ready for it, you will feel more confident and less likely to be thrown off by unexpected challenges. Practice. Another way to build confidence is to practice. If you can master a skill or task through repetition, you will feel more confident when it comes time to use that skill or perform that task in a real-world setting. Be positive. Confidence is also linked to your outlook on life. If you focus on the negative, you will tend to see yourself in a negative light. However, if you focus on the positive, you will be more likely to see yourself in a positive light. Keep learning. Finally, one of the best ways to maintain confidence is to keep learning. When you are constantly learning and expanding your knowledge base, you will feel more confident in your abilities. Maintaining confidence is something that you have to work on every day. It doesn't come naturally to everyone, and even the most successful people have to work at it.

In the face of defeat, maintain confidence and persevere. This is a quality that all great athletes possess. When they lose, they don't let it get them down. They use it as motivation to come back stronger the next time. Michael Jordan said, "I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." The same goes for life in general. When you're facing tough times, maintain confidence in yourself and don't give up. Remember, success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out. So, keep at it and don't give up! Confidence is the key to success.

Look back at the mindsets you want to work on from the self-assessment. List any negative self-talk that causes you to doubt yourself.

What steps listed above can you take to improve your self-confidence, and how can you incorporate those into your daily habits and rituals?

Overcome Adversity Any difficult situation or event that causes emotional pain or difficulty. Adversity can come in many different forms, such as personal loss, illness, or financial hardship. It can be tough to get through tough times, but it is important to remember that you are not alone. Many people have faced and overcome adversity. Lean on your support system. When you're going through tough times, it's important to lean on your support system. This can include family, friends, or a professional counselor. These people can offer you love, comfort, and practical help when you need it most. Messier said, "Everybody needs help no matter what position you’re in, no matter where you are in your own life. The biggest thing that has come out of all of this is that there’s no shame in admitting any problem, and seeking help has been very productive and helpful for a lot of folks" (Smith, 2022). Keep things in perspective. It is also important to keep things in perspective. While it may feel like the end of the world, it is important to remember that there are people who have it worse off than you. This doesn't minimize your pain, but it can help you put things into perspective and give you some perspective. Find a positive outlet. Finally, one of the best ways to deal with adversity is to find a positive outlet. This can be anything from writing in a journal to taking up a new hobby to giving your all on the field. Doing something that makes you happy can help you get through tough times. No one is immune to adversity, but how you deal with it is what matters most.

What types of adversity are you facing right now?

How does that make you feel?

When you're going through a tough time, it's important to accept how you feel. Don't try to bottle your emotions up because that will only make things worse. Accept that you are feeling pain, sadness, or anger and allow yourself to feel those emotions. It's also important to remember that you are not alone. Many people have faced and overcome adversity. There is no shame in admitting that you need help, and seeking help can be very productive. If you need immediate help, there are resources available at the end of this book. Embrace the feeling of adversity. It can be tough, but it is also a sign that you are alive. Feeling pain means that you care about something and that you are invested in your life. Don't try to numb yourself to the feeling of adversity. Instead, embrace it and use it as motivation to become stronger. Use the feeling of adversity to your advantage. It can be a powerful motivator to push yourself harder and achieve your goals. Let it motivate you to become the best version of yourself.

How can you channel your feelings into motivation to achieve your goals?

What lessons can you take from your experiences? How can you use those lessons to become a better person?

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