Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Be comfortable with being uncomfortable

November 26, 2011 by  
Filed under Off-Season

This time of year provides a lot of freedom for players to experiment with some new things.  Whether it’s a couple tweaks in the batting stance, a slightly different grip on a change-up,  or a new hitting drill, the off-season provides a non-competitive environment to try new things without worrying about failing.  Tweaks during the season, especially major tweaks or overhauls, can be very tough since players not only have to be focused on the change but producing for the team as well.  Many players just go with what they know during the season and do not resort to major overhauls until after the season.

Let the experimenting begin!
If such an overhaul is in order to improve and get to the next level, a player must first accept the fact that success may not come right away.  There is usually a learning curve that involves a lot of ups and downs that can be very disheartening for young players.  At times, players may even go backwards or digress in performance.  When this happens, some players panic and go back to what they know which may or may not be what they need to move on to the next level.  Just because it feels comfortable and maybe even has produced good results at your current level doesn’t mean it will continue to be so in the future.  It is said that “baseball is a game of adjustments.”  Those who keep making the right adjustments move up and those that do not get left behind.
Change is uncomfortable.  Your body’s muscle memory will fight you on it every step of the way.  To deal with this, every player has to be mentally strong and learn to be comfortable with being uncomfortable
This is true not only during the off-season but during the season as well.  There are so many times when things just don’t feel right.  Aches and pains, slumps, ruts, the weather, etc. all conspire to rarely get you to feel like you are on top of your game.  The tough-minded player just submits to this uncomfort and trusts that everything will be ok in the end.
Admittedly, this is not an easy thing to do.  It’s like telling a player to jump out of an airplane without a parachute and have faith that he’ll find one on the way down.  It can be tough but at least the off-season provides a great time to practice all this!


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