I have an array of ideas that all are factoring into this post. I watched some of the Charles Barkley turning 50 program and he said that at a certain point in his career he hadn’t developed the self confidence to know he was the best. This got me thinking about how good MJ was at being clutch and all the big shots he made. Then I remembered a WSJ entry documenting who the best and worst current NBA players were at making last second shots this year. Believe it or not, Kyrie Irving was the best and Paul George was the worst with a surprise Kobe being terrible as well (this year). Next I brought these ideas into my own life and how good I am at last second shots and how rarely this moment occurs. This was probably the only time I’ve been clutch in my life (there was also a shot I made on the Bball Travel team against PW that tied the game). My lack of opportunities throughout my life is the case for a specific reason, I don’t have the self confidence in these situations to succeed. Why?
There are certain people who are either born with self confidence or are able to cultivate it throughout their life. It’s probably one of the most important attributes to have. The ability to do something successfully isn’t as easy as it sounds. Everyone can talk about doing something but when it really comes down to doing it, your self confidence is on display. I personally don’t have the self confidence I should. Just some examples, when I play basketball my mind thinks about how I’m going to miss this lay up opposed to how I’m going to make the layup. When I try to pick up girls my mind concentrates on what is wrong with the person rather than right. It’s just a mindset. If for some reason I just decided that I’m the best person to give the ball to at the end of the game and I fully believed it, I’d probably get some opportunities. As is, I know I’m not that good and don’t want to be responsible for missing the last second shot.
That’s where the enigma of self-confidence comes into play. I know people who are terrible at things but they don’t know they are terrible at it. So their self confidence is unrealistically higher than it should be. I’m not sure if that is good or bad but it’s worth noting. My mindset tends to be overwhelmed with reality and past results. This leads me to have lower self confidence than I should. If I just flicked a switch and started believing more in everything I do, I’d probably achieve more. This of course is a complete mindfuck because it doesn’t always work. I was playing Jeff in Ping-Pong and in my mind I was continuously telling myself I’m better and he has no shot at winning. Once the game gets started and I catch some slams in my grill, no self-confidence in the world can overcome being outmatched. It’s almost like you have to trick your brain into not only having self confidence, but then trick it again into doing something skillfully. Repetition can help with the second part but the first part has crippled many a people.