This article contributed by my business partner at BasketballHQ.com (http://www NULL.BasketballHQ NULL.com) Kyle Ohman.
Self Belief and Basketball Success… how can we do better? One of the things that I love about basketball, and sports in general, is that it provides an equal opportunity to everyone. It doesn’t care what you look like, where you are from, how much money you have, etc. It only cares if you can play or not.
The other thing that I love about basketball is that every journey is different. There are players like LeBron that have had the spotlight on them since a young age and have always been hyped up to be a superstar. There are also players like Damian Lillard that were continually overlooked until they proved themselves at every level. And, in between these two ends of the spectrum, there are countless stories of other players who have had a unique journey.
My path as a basketball player was definitely more towards the “overlooked path.” And even though I didn’t make it to the NBA, I was able to go from receiving zero college basketball scholarships to; walking on and eventually earning a scholarship at a Division 1 school, becoming a 1,000 point scorer, and then playing professionally in Europe. I don’t bring all of this up to pat myself on the back, but I do it to challenge any player that might read this article.
Your path may not look the same as others, but that doesn’t mean you can’t accomplish your basketball goals. In fact, this is one of the reasons why I started Tampa Basketball Training (https://tampabasketballtraining NULL.com) and why I love working with basketball players of all levels.
So here are three things that you should be focusing on as a player when it comes to accomplishing your basketball goals.
Basketball Mindset: Try “Why Not Me?”
A lot of times, one of the biggest hurdles for players is their own mindset. This is especially true if a player doesn’t constantly have people telling them how great they are from an early age. It becomes easy to settle for an average basketball career and telling yourself that you weren’t blessed with some of the gifts that other players have.
This type of mindset will severely stunt your growth as a player and will drastically limit your basketball future. As a player, you need to have the mindset of “why not me?” Why can’t you be the next Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, or Damian Lillard? And, regardless of whether you ever have that type of success or not, what are the negatives in believing in yourself? If you want to be successful, you need to remove all of the excuses (https://basketballhq NULL.com/removing-excuses-in-basketball) that you allow yourself to think on.
It is up to you to believe in yourself at all times and prove that you belong as a player in whatever level of basketball you are aiming for.
Belief Can Be Built and Earned With Hours
Success starts first with your mindset, but nothing gets done without hard work to back it up. If you want to be the best player at your school, in your area, make it to the next level, or whatever your goals might be, you better be able to match that goal with the level of work that it will take to accomplish it.
I knew that my goal as a basketball player was to play Division One basketball and I believe that my worth ethic matched that goal. I would dedicate day after day to working on my game and I would choose to make the necessary sacrifices. This doesn’t mean that your life should be out of balance, but it does mean that you will need to set your priorities and make sure that they are lined up with your basketball goals.
Also, if you are not sure of what you should be doing when you do get in the gym, get online and do some research. There are so many quality basketball websites (https://www NULL.listsforall NULL.com/best-basketball-websites/) out there that provide free resources or charge a small fee for expert instruction. Work smarter and take advantage of these basketball resources.
Prove Yourself Every Time You Step on the Floor
Some people call it “playing with a chip on your shoulder” or “playing with something to prove.” Regardless of what term you want to use to describe it, it is up to you to make sure that people know you deserve to be on the floor. Every time you step on the floor for practice, workouts, pick up, etc., have the mindset that you are the best player in the gym and then prove it by having a business-like mindset.
There is a time for having fun with your friends and teammates, but when you get on the court, it needs to be all business. Don’t leave any doubt in anyone’s mind that you are a high-level player and deserve to be there.
Basketball Resilience and Sticking To It
It is easy to sign up for something that you want to do, the hard part is sticking with it when you don’t see how it is possibly going to work out. During my Freshman year at Liberty University, I tried to walk on to the team. I was one of the finalists but didn’t end up making the team. At that point, I could’ve told myself that I gave it my best effort and it didn’t work out; there is no shame in that. But I knew, I knew that I was good enough and I believed that God had a purpose for me in continuing with basketball.
So I kept working on my game, I played intramurals, and then in the spring I went and talked to the coach and asked him if I could work out with the team. Long story short, he said yes, and I went on to become a scholarship player, a 1,000 point scorer, one of the best shooters in the country, was able to play professionally, and have been able to work with basketball players from all around the world.
There is going to be a time in your playing career where things are not going the way you want them to, and you will be confronted with a decision to continue on or pursue something else. There is nothing wrong with pursuing other things in life, but if you truly believe that you are good enough to play and that playing basketball is your passion, I would challenge you to double down and go for it. Don’t let anyone else tell you what you can or can’t do, keep working, keep grinding, and make it happen.
I hope this article has fired you up and motivated you to pursue all of your basketball goals, it is important to remember that there is no secret formula though. You may do everything right and still not make it or accomplish all of your goals, BUT, you just may. So go pursue your basketball dreams and turn them into a reality. Why Not You?