Staying Positive On The Baseball Field Is Crucial
Staying positive in baseball can be very hard. It's a game where a lot of negative things happen, and then the players are kind of left to stand around and think about their mistakes. For example, a hitter goes up to the plate and strikes out. That same hitter might not get another at bat for an hour or more.
It's the same for an infielder. Maybe the shortstop gets a ground ball in the second inning and makes an error. They might not get another ground ball AT ALL that day!
So the art of staying positive is very important. Baseball is an awesome game that has tons of facets to it. Yes there is some standing around, but as the game matures and the kids do the same, the speed of the game dramatically increases.
What's most important is that a player who makes a mistake doesn't allow that mistake to weigh them down between then and their next try. While it might take an hour for them to get another shot at the play, it might also be seconds away. In fact they might get three more balls in a row.
You never know what the game of baseball has in store, so staying positive and staying in the present moment in a must.
Being In The Moment and Letting The Game Come To You
This post is part of a series, if you missed any parts of it click below:
As the next part of our "staying positive" series we wanted to address another critical factor. That is playing in the moment.
We have heard coaches say this for a long time, but I don't think it's given enough importance and I certainly don't think that it's practiced enough.
Baseball can seem like a negative game at times and it's filled with perceived failure. A player cannot dwell on the last two at bats if they weren't what he wanted, just like he can't remain consumed by an error he made a few innings ago.
There's a lot of time in our game to stand around and think about stuff, and it doesn't do anybody any good if what they're thinking about is negative.
Get Back To Your Process
One of the best ways to help a baseball player stay positive is to focus on process. This is addressed more in another article but we wanted to highlight it here too. We also have another great article here written by our friend Casey Fisk that talks about how wrong it is to consider baseball a game of failure.
If you have a solid process it really helps you to stay in the moment and not dwell on mistakes. You realize that the past is the past and what's in front of you now is what will lead to your future. The past has no bearing on your goals, only the present does.
Practice Flushing Mistakes and Clearing Your Mind
There are some more great ways to practice flushing the last play as well, and you need to do just that, practice it. Come up with something that you feel helps you clear your mind. It can be a saying, it can be looking down to the dirt and brushing a spot smooth with your cleats, it can be taking a deep breath.
Whatever you like that you can do every time you want to clear your mind. Give it a try and stay consistent with it, it will become a great tool for staying in the moment. A couple deep breaths is our favorite because it has the added benefit of loosening the muscles up!
In order to stay positive, we have to live in the moment when we're on the field. Good or bad, flush the last play and focus on the next one. Baseball will give you another opportunity and when it does, meet it with a fresh mind and confident effort. Play in the moment and you'll put yourself a step above your peers.