13 Tips to Develop a Mental Approach to the Game
 
1.Focus on only those things that you can control and disregard the rest
     -This is the foundational step to all other steps
     -Things that you cannot control include:
     -Winning and Losing ( you can affect the outcome, but not control it)
     -How your opponent plays on a given point, in a game, or an entire match
     -The environment, such as wind, sun, rain, and so on (you can control how you deal with them!)
     -Unfortunate breaks, such as let cords, mis-hits, bad bounces, and so on
     -How someone else is doing in a tournament or in the rankings
     -What other people are going to think about your game or your results
 
2.Winning is not the number one goal when you are competing
     -Thinking about the outcome consumes you because you will be focusing on something outside your control
     -"When you stay in the process is when you win. Not when you get into the end results” – Billie Jean King
     -Winning is important to the pros, that’s why they know not to focus on it.
 
3.Emphasize performance goals to achieve outcome goals
    -Performance goals you can control, outcome goals you cannot
   -Examples include:
   -I will stay in the “now” state, focusing on one point at a time
   -I will take my time between points
   -I will attack my opponents second serve
   -I will execute the inside out forehand pattern I worked on in practice
   -I will only engage in positive self-talk
 
4.Cultivate intrinsic motivation and de-emphasize extrinsic motivation
   -Intrinsic motivation – coming from within yourself
   -Extrinsic motivation – coming from outside factors
   -If you are intrinsically motivated, it means you are personally striving to master the sport or the task at hand
   -Extrinsic motivation example, “I want to win so that I can be number  1!” What happens when you reach number one?
 
5.Stay in the present
   -If you are psychologically anywhere but in the present, you are in trouble
   -Learn from the past and plan for the future, but BE in the present
   -The past and future are out of your control – if you dwell on the last bad shot, you are not giving your full attention to what’s at stake right       now!
 
6.Project a powerful, positive presence
   -You can be angry or happy and still project a strong image
   -Sometimes you will have to be a good actor!
   -Never, and I mean NEVER let someone think they are getting to you mentally
   -You can lose a match, but don’t let the opponent have the satisfaction of breaking you emotionally
 
7.Engage in Positive Self-Talk
   -Don’t berate yourself or talk negatively about your game
   -You can’t afford to battle two opponents!
   -Think in terms of what you want to happen instead of what you don’t want to happen
   -Examples include:
   -“I can’t lose serve now.” – What you don’t want to happen
   -Instead think about what you need to do to be successful
   -The more you tell yourself what you don’t want to happen, the more likely it is to happen
 
8.Breathe
   -Breathing helps control anxiety, nerves, and tension
   -The best players take deep breaths on big points because it helps control themselves physically and emotionally
 
9.If you can’t visualize it, chances are it will not become a reality
   -Try to visualize yourself on the court exactly the way you would like
   -If you have trouble with a particular shot, visualize yourself performing that shot particularly well
   -This really works and many top professionals have said as such!
 
10.Maintain your routines
   -It is critical to establish sound pre-point routines and to maintain them during competition
   -This is not the same as superstition
   -Routines help you relax, focus your concentration, and maintain mental discipline
 
11.Don’t make it personal
   -Even if you hate your opponent, the worst thing you can do is make it personal
   -It is counterproductive to focus on the person you are playing, as opposed to how he is playing, what he is doing, and what his tendencies       are
 
12.It’s okay to be nervous; just don’t be afraid
   -Always look forward to competition as a way to challenge yourself to be your best
   -All types of problems evolve from fear
   -If you keep your competitive situations in perspective, you will perform better. Remember that the worst thing that can happen is that you       lose the match
 
13.Practice under pressure
   -“The pressure I created during practices may have exceeded that which opponents produced. I believe when an individual constantly works      under pressure, they will respond automatically when faced with it during competition.” – John Wooden
   -By putting extra pressure on yourself in practice, you quickly will learn to improve your ability to execute under pressure in matches
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