How to Beat the Stud or Spud Syndrome

Posted on Posted in Coaches, Mental Training

The last few posts I’ve been going over the results of the wrestlers that have taken my Peak Performance Evaluation.
Here are two insights I discovered:

78.8% scored very high in handling adversity.

The average overall score out of 100 was 56.61. (That tells me wrestlers can make some huge improvements in their mental game.)footballers-384082_640

Now let’s look at the area where 73.07 % of the wrestlers scored the lowest out of all five areas I evaluated.

That area was…
Self-Confidence is a funny thing because it can be very situational if you think about it.

For instance, you go out on the mat against an opponent you see as someone you can easily defeat and you’ll be pretty confident.
You’ll be aggressive, take chances, look for every chance to dominate, and all the other indicators that show high confidence.
But how do you perform when your opponent is someone you think is as good as you or better?
Someone that’s ranked higher than you…
Or placed higher than you…
Maybe they’ve beaten you before or they are undefeated for the season when you step on the mat with them.
Do you wrestle the same as always?

Or can others see that your confidence is low based on how you approach the match?
Do you come out and get right in their face and look to dominate them?

Or is it more of a cat and mouse game?
Are you looking to get the first takedown and make a statement as soon as you can?

Or are you waiting to see what happens?
Do you believe you can score over and over on the guy?
Or are you wrestling not to lose instead of wrestling to win?

Here’s the bottom line:

If you don’t wrestle a very good opponent the same way you wrestle someone you know you can beat, you need to work on your self-confidence.
I call it the stud or spud syndrome.
You’re caught in the trap of constantly trying to put your opponents in one category or the other.
They’re a spud = “I’ll crush this guy.”
They’re a stud = “I sure hope this goes well” or other self doubting thoughts such as “I can’t let him pin me.”
When you’re stuck in the stud or spud syndrome your self-confidence is high or low based on the situation you’re facing.
That’s why I almost always start coaching a wrestler on how to build their self-confidence to unstoppable levels.
High self-confidence in wrestling doesn’t guarantee you will always win, but your chances are near zero without it.
Because the truth is your self-confidence is the number one governor of your performance.
Wrestlers with high self-confidence approach every match with the same intensity, and look to dominate their opponent from the first whistle start.
How can you start building your self-confidence?
Here’s a good place to start.
Wrestlers with high confidence know what they are good at and they choose to focus on those things.
So here’s an action step for you.
Write down as many things as you can think of that you are good at.
For instance:
I have a great single leg takedown. (or other technique that you’re good at)
I’m always careful to get enough rest so I’m fresh and ready to wrestle.
I watch my diet and eat right so I’m in good health.
I never miss a practice so I have plenty of opportunities to get better.
I’m very athletic or strong or fast etc.
The point is start actively thinking about what you are good at and focus on these things.
No one is good at everything, but we’re all good at some things.  Focus on these and work to get better in areas you need to improve on.
And if you stay on the path of constant improvement, you can say I’m getting better at _______ everyday because I work to get better at it.
The first place self-confidence comes from is seeing yourself at your best.
Now 10 very important words:
If it is to be, it is up to me.
I can’t give you high self-confidence nor can anyone else because self-confidence is what you believe about yourself...not what I believe about you...not what anyone else believes about’s what YOU BELIEVE ABOUT YOU.
So you have to make it a priority to build it up.
Start by listing out as many things as you can think of that you are good at and add to the list every time you think of something else.
Then make it a point to focus on these things.
Grab your list and go over it daily and have it on your phone and review it before every match.
If you’ll take responsibility for your mental game it will improve.
In fact, if you’ll review your list everyday and see yourself being good at what you have written down, I’ll guarantee in 30 days you will be amazed at the difference in your wrestling.
To bigger wins more often,

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