How to Be Successful Without Winning
Winning and succeeding are often used interchangeably by many athletes.
Most athletes and teams gauge their level of success by their win-loss record.
Winning tends to dictate how athletes view and feel about themselves. If you win, you feel good and have a greater sense of worth as an athlete. When you lose, you feel horrible and, even worthless at times.
Is it possible to be successful without winning?
Is it possible to feel a sense of accomplishment and pride even if you didn’t come out the victor?
Well, there can only be one winner but success is open to everyone. Success is a self-measurement; how well performed instead of how well one played against an opponent.
There is one big distinction between winning and success which is:
Winning requires a lot of variables outside of your control to come together in just the right combination (your opponent’s level of play, competition conditions, your physical health, etc)
Success is focused one factor within your direct control… YOU!
Success requires a mindset that allows you to focus on your game, push through the duration of a competition, mentally rebound from the adversity with a contest and emotionally react in a positive manner as you compete.
If you can find success even in defeat, you will be able to hold your head high, maintain confidence and enhance motivation knowing that you pushed yourself to your limit.
Success builds emotional momentum that pushes you to continue to search for ways to improve your game.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga entered the 2015 Shanghai Rolex Masters ranked 16th in the world. Tsonga beat Rafael Nadal in the semifinals, 64, 06, 75 for the opportunity to face No.1 ranked Novak Djokovic. Djokovic has been a dominant force in men’s tennis winning over 82% of his matches including beating Tsonga 62, 64 at the 2015 Shanghai Masters finals.
Even though Tsonga was outscored, he viewed his performance as a success. In fact, Tsonga moved up to 10th in the rankings.
TSONGA: “For me what is important today is to play good tennis. I’m really happy with the week I did… I’m very satisfied. Yeah, you know, to come back at your best level, it’s always a long process. I’m happy today to be back really close to the top 10. It gives me energy, you know, to continue to work hard and try to achieve other good things.”
Success is a process where you consistently put forth your best effort, look for ways to improve your game and have the mindset to compete no matter the odds.
The results will be about what they should be but the effort you put forth is totally up to you and it’s that effort that determines your level of success.
Strategy for focusing on success rather than winning:
Of course you want to win, that goes without saying. But it is easy to get caught up in the end score.
When you evaluate your performance, you need to objectively look at other factors: how hard you fought for points, how focused you were at critical moments or how quickly you bounced back from mistakes.
If you find successes, like Tsonga, it will provide you fuel to continue to work hard and try to achieve other good things.
Check Out Our Video of The Week, Fear of Failure and Mental Toughness in Sports!
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