Controlling your emotions in any sport is of paramount importance for success. Emotional intelligence is a key component of a winning attitude. It refers to the ability to perceive your emotions, reason with your emotions, understand your emotions, manage your emotions and control your emotions.
For example if you are the captain, the primary leader of the team, you must keep your emotions in check, never too high, never too low, on an even keel. The team captain’s mission is to win the team’s trust, and to gain their respect. Stay calm and carry on – even when the score is one sided. Work hard, do your best and lead by example – set a great example for the rest of your teammates.
Some ways to manage and control your emotions can include the following.
1) Choose to be an optimist. Keep positive even when the game situation looks bleak. Maybe there’s still time on the clock, you just need a break in this game (a good bounce, a referee’s call in your favor etc) or maybe there’s another game / opportunity to redeem yourself. Keep the big picture - look towards the bright side keep the situation in perspective. It’s part of life’s learning process. Being thankful for what you do have makes it easier to wake up in the morning with a positive attitude. Gratitude is a powerful force in our lives especially in sports. It’s a privilege to play a sport at this level!
2) Choose how to react to your emotions - we try to justify our emotions but we need to own our emotions and decide which is the best way to react. Be conscious of your old moods and feelings reappearing (getting too nervous or anxious). Try not to let past experiences, situations and results trigger your reactions. Try not to let your emotions get the better of you again! Learn from past moments and experiences (taking a bad penalty etc). Be stronger emotionally and perform better next time!
3) Know that you are responsibility for your actions and emotions. Do not be a victim to your emotions. Be in charge – be in control. You can make a better choice, a better action and have better control of your emotions. It’s not the situation but how you react to the situation!
In the end, emotional control will produce better play / performances and an even superior experience for yourself and everyone on the team. And at the end of the game isn’t that what it is all about? Don’t let your emotions deter you from giving your best efforts and achieving your best results!