Self-belief's role in creating winners

Do you believe that what you want is within reach?

Dr Melissa Weinberg said "Without the talent, resources, and raw ability to perform a task, belief alone will not do the job. However, it may just be the thing that motivates you to harness the talent, resources, and ability required to get there."

Talent, resources and ability are what tennis players Casper Ruud, Felix Augur-Aliassime and Rafael Nadal have in common. 

[SPOILER ALERT: Body contains content from Netflix: Break Point Episode 5] 

In the latest episode of Break Point, Felix played against Rafael in the quarterfinals of The French Open. 

Felix said, "To win at this level, the biggest challenge is always to try and beat someone like Nadal here. But you must believe in yourself. You must believe you can beat the best." 

And then, he lost. But he became one of the three players to push Rafael to a fifth set at the Roland Garros. 

After the game, Felix said, "I really believe in life you get what you deserve. I'm proud of what I was able to show to the world. It gave me a lot of confidence that I could challenge even the best. So I have even more belief. So I was disappointed at the time, but I feel like I'm nowhere near my peak yet. Hopefully my peak is front of me."

Felix bought a present for himself too. He recognised that he did something stupendous and celebrated his achievements. In Matthew Dicks's Someday is Today, he urged more of us to celebrate our little wins in life because most of us seldom do. Celebrating also spurs us on to do even greater things.  

Casper Ruud was also playing, but on the other side of the draw. It meant they wouldn't meet unless they both go through to the finals. 

"The goal this year for me is to reach a quarterfinal of a Grand Slam." said Casper Ruud. 

He won the quarterfinals and even reached the finals where he was going to play against Rafael Nadal.  

He said, "I have been practicing with Rafa for the last two or three years at the academy and he always beats me in practice."

He told reporters, "I will be the underdog. I could probably tell you all the finals and who he's beaten because I watched them all on TV. So I will try to, tonight and tomorrow night, dream about the great winners and the unbelievable rallies because that's what it's going to take if I want to have any chance. I'll need to play my best tennis ever. But I still have to believe I can do it."

He also said, "It's tough to believe that we can beat Rafa, Roger, and Novak. Because they've been dominating like no one almost has ever dominated in sports before. And especially when all three of them have been idols of you growing up... To play Rafa in a five sets clay-court match, on that court...It's the toughest challenge we have in tennis, for sure."

Casper lost all three sets of the game crowning Rafael Nadal the champion of the 2022 French Open. 

He said after, "I didn't really think that I was...humiliated. It's Rafa and it's on clay, so I mean... I did my best. What else can I do? It wasn't good enough. Wasn't even close.

Everyone thinks that probably every athlete has this champion mentality. But it's not always like that. Being from Norway, a small tennis country where we don't have any big history, it's not always been easy to realise that I can do it myself. The hunger to win grows even more when you lose the finals. 

I will always have that silver plate back home in my place and look at it and be proud of what I achieved there. I'll just pray to God that I don't play Rafa again in Roland-Garros because it's an impossible task to beat him."

Felix and Casper are both great athletes. They both possess the physical and mental capacity to bring them to the quarterfinals and the finals. However, I can't help but feel that Casper could've won the match too if his self-beliefs were stronger. 

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Today, while in the shower, before writing this, I was feeling defeated. 

How many more days of writing do I have to go to become one of the best?

My writing is bringing me nowhere. Who am I writing for? 

Those thoughts made me want to give up writing. 

It's probably pointless, more negative thoughts popped into my head. 

When you think this way, you're putting resistance between yourself and your goal. 

Yes, the goal seems eons away, too far to reach but with a detrimental mindset, you put yourself in a vulnerable position, you give up, the war is lost even before you begun.

My partner reminded me that there are going to be more days like these. 

It's easy to ride the waves when you're on a high, easy to keep your spirits up when you feel like you're winning. The challenge is to stay high or to stay motivated when things look bleak or when the waves come crashing. 

The thing is, do you believe you're a winner?

Do you think you deserve it?

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