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Dealing with negativity

July 24, 2017

I was watching an exciting documentary on Netflix the other day called “Last Chance U.”

It’s a documentary about a community college in the eastern Mississippi area, and all the football players from all over the country go there to redeem themselves from academic, legal and personal issues and move back to the D-1 level. In the show, there are tons of adversity involved, and I wanted to discuss how athletes deal with negativity. I’ve seen a wide spectrum of athletes who succeeded by using negativity as a fuel, and some collapsed because of the negativity. I wanted to give you a few tips on how to handle things like this.

Mission first. Yourself second.

Most of the effective athletes, team members, or anyone involved with an organization will always do well if they put the mission over themselves. You have to make a little sacrifice, disregard what your personal agendas, personal goals, or personal vendettas are and work towards the ultimate goal. To give an example, I was hitting under .200 in summer ball once. I had a personal agenda of becoming an all-star, getting a professional contract, and all that. Our team wasn’t doing well because every player was out for himself, and then our head coach called us out on it. That shook us a little bit, and we decided to get rid of everything personal and focus on the mission, which was to win and make the playoffs. The minute we changed our mindset, we all began to perform better than when we were thinking about ourselves. A lot of negative things can happen to you during the course of a season, but if you look over the negativity and focus on the end goal…things will work out a lot better than if you look through the fog.

Use the negativity as fuel!

We all have our own haters everywhere we go. No matter what you do, there will always be someone out there doubting you, not thinking you’ll be able to pull something off, and so on. They might be straight up with you, they might be subtle, and such. We all know that there’s someone out there, and we will work to prove them wrong. With every rep you do in the weight room, you bring yourself closer to proving them wrong. With every clean rep at practice, you’ll slowly turn the tables on them. With every good game you have, the closer you are to achieving your inner greatness. Make them eat their words. Kick sand in their faces. Turn a deaf ear to the naysayers!