10 Tips For Overcoming Adversity in Competition

From having butterflies, to bad umpires and unfavorable weather conditions, adversity is everywhere in softball. Even the best, most-talented players face adversity. But it’s not about skill level; it’s about how you choose to react to it—how you choose to handle it.


In order to beat adversity, you must focus on the solution and remain positive in all situations. Please read over this post with your daughter.


  1. View adversity as temporary, localized, and correctable.

You have two choices—you can view adversity as ongoing and unchangeable, or you can think of it as temporary and correctable. If you’re not positive, you won’t get out of that hitting slump, you won’t be able to field that ground ball and you have no chance of laying down a sacrifice bunt. But if you believe, you can achieve.


2. View adversity as an opportunity or challenge.

Say it with me: adversity creates opportunity. Help yourself overcome adversity by framing it as a challenge instead of a negative. Missed a ground ball? I challenge you to get the next one. Strikeout? I challenge you to get a hit during your next at-bat.  Remember: adversity creates opportunity. Seize that opportunity and win the day!


3. Control the controllables.

Again, adversity happens. How you react to it—how it affects your focus, confidence and attitude—is up to you. Words of advice? Stay calm, remain positive and prepare for the next play by controlling what you can control.



4. Take it one at a time.

One pitch at a time, that is. By urging players to play in the moment we’re coaching them to focus on the next play and forget about past mistakes and mishaps.  You cannot change the past, but you can always affect what happens next—always.


5. Persist.

“In order to succeed, you must first be willing to fail.” And fail you will. Nearly everyone you know has suffered through losses, mistakes and problems far before they ever sniffed success. But if you persist—if you endure—you will eventually succeed. We’re going to leave you with this quote:


“Giving up is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”


6. Try smarter instead of always trying harder.

You’ve heard horror stories about teams being forced to run laps after a game, but do you really know if that actually ever helped them? Surely they must be frustrated and I guarantee you they’re not all thinking positive thoughts as they hit lap 4. Take a step back, analyze the situation and see if you can identify an easier, more effect way of doing things. It’s always worth a shot.


7. Be patient and trust your plan.

Be honest—you may be getting a little impatient at this point in the blog post, but if you made it this far, you’re already ahead of the competition. Go ahead and give yourself a pat on the back.


Pro tips essential to long-term success in both softball and life:

  • Be patient
  • Avoid second-guessing yourself
  • Trust your plan


8. Use the anger/frustration to your advantage.

Not only does your opponent love it when you’re angry, but they revel in watching you throw your glove to the ground because you’re frustrated. They eat it up—but you, you know better. You have different plans. Instead of bottling up your anger and frustration, use it as motivation and focus on achieving your goals. Advantage: you.


9. Endure it together.

As a team, you have the choice of facing adversity together or thinking on an individual level and falling apart at the seams.  Be a team player, have your teammates back and remind yourself that enduring adversity as a whole will ultimately make you a stronger squad.


10. Learn lessons from mistakes.

Everyone makes mistakes—even the best athletes in the world commit errors. Rather than dwelling on their mishaps, they learn from their faults and turn those past problems into future successes—that’s what makes them the best at what they do. By vowing to learn from your mistakes, you’re setting yourself up to overcome adversity in competition and in life.


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