Forgive me readers, for I have slacked. It has been over two weeks since my last post. It has been a busy couple of weeks. Also, it has been hard to get in the right head space to write. It’s been hard to find free time between work, other work, and pool league/tournaments/provincials.
Well here we are at Victoria Day weekend again. I booked the day off in case we had to play pool today, but, alas, my two teams officially came to their end last night. However, it was an amazing weekend of pool playing and it was literally a fight to the finish. On a bittersweet note, I get to spend the day at home with S.O. We made cookies (well, S.O. made cookies. I put a couple on the cookie sheet for him), I have a load of laundry in the dryer… it’s been quite a domestic Monday so far.
During pool provincials last year I received a phone call that my grandmother passed away. My mind kept going back to that moment last year. Same weekend, same bar. It gave me a strong determination to fight to the best of my ability this weekend. I only lost one match all weekend. I was excited to actually get to play this weekend and I thought I did pretty well! We all did.
There were a few things that stuck with me throughout the weekend. Just a couple of things that I try to keep with me when I play pool, or really when it comes to any obstacle in life.
1) Be Confident! – Confidence is key. Yesterday morning when I was put into my first match I saw the girl I was playing. The look on her face said it all. She seemed nervous. I said to myself, “I can kick her ass!” And I beat her 3-0. That confidence I had in myself was only confirmed and took me through to the next round.
2) Learn by your mistakes – If you make mistakes, it’s okay. This is how you learn. Use what you learned in your past to make educated decisions on how to proceed. Don’t let mistakes from your past shake your confidence in yourself.
3) Breathe and relax – Take deep breaths before making decisions. Don’t pull the trigger unless you are confident in your target. Take that extra moment to breathe; let the air flow through you, relax, and focus.
4) Use the pressure as fuel – In high pressure situations, like a trip to Las Vegas on the line, it is easy to allow this pressure to make you anxious, nervous, and scared. However, anxiety is a physiological response to fear. However, for me, anxiety is a obstacle all in itself. This is probably the hardest to do, but you have to visualize that anxiety, smile at it, and say “I am kicking your ass!” Telling that anxiety that it is not winning this war today. That extra confidence you gain by shutting up your anxiety can definitely help your game.
5) Use your aides – Take advantage of the help around you. In pool, you have the opportunity to seek help with asking for a coach. When unsure of what to do, always ask questions to help you make an educated decision you can trust is the best for you.
This is something that I am trying to keep in my mind. Do not let fear stop you from trying. As I have quoted Mr. Wayne Gretzky countless countless times “You miss 100% of the shots you never take” If you let fear of failure work its way through your mind then there’s a good chance that you will fail. But if you keep confident, and try your best, no matter the consequence you can say that you tried.
So, be confident, try hard, breathe, relax, and use what you’ve learned. If you never try, you definitely will never win.
And if you lose or fail? Think of what you would have if you never tried at all. In the case of the pool tournament, if I never had the opportunity to try I would not have found out that I could play, and that I can win. In the case of other situations, such as applying for a new job or asking that particular person out, you will always be thinking “what if?” If you don’t try you will never know!
Well that’s enough from me for one day. It’s time for me to bid adieu.
Cheers and Stay Smiling