Self-doubt is a self-defense mechanism.
If you don’t think you’re any good, then you’ll be right when you have a bad shift
or a not-so-great game. If you aren’t confident in yourself, there is no way that
someone can attack you for being “cocky” or “full of yourself”. By doubting yourself,
you give yourself an “out” so that you don’t always have to hold yourself accountable
and be the best you can be every time you hit the ice.
I wish I could just give girls hockey players confidence. I wish it was something
that I could just package up and hand to them so that they’d believe in themselves
and stop listening to the voices in their heads that tell them that they “aren’t good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, talented enough”.
But I can’t. No one can.
Confidence has to come from within. But it’s not an “all the time” thing.
Sure we all have times and areas in our lives where we feel supremely
confident – and then there are times (often for no good reason) where we
feel like we don’t want to face the world and would rather just recede into
We’ve all been there.
But just because you aren’t feeling like your most empowered self on any
given day, it doesn’t mean that you can just stop trying. In the case of
confidence, sometimes you just need to fake it until you feel it.
You’ve got to be your own best friend instead of being your own worst enemy.
Don’t put yourself down – stand up and say “Thanks” when someone gives you
a compliment – even if you think you played a “horrible” game and you can only
focus on the negative.
Fake it until you feel it.
And stop feeling like a fraud.
Stop worrying that one day they’ll find out that you’re really not that good.
Stop underestimating yourself and judging your performance on the rink,
in the classroom and in life as being worse than it really is.
Turn off the self-doubt and take the compliment.
Be your own best friend.
Work Hard. Dream BIG. Believe In Yourself.
Your friend and coach,
Kim McCullough, MSc, YCS
Director, Total Female Hockey
Girls Hockey Director, PEAC School For Elite Athletes