What playing tennis has taught me about myself.

We asked our readers, women who love to play tennis, a soul-searching question that may be tough to answer without stripping away a few layers. These feelings really cross the spectrum from the Australian Open player to the weekend warrior. Deep down we all share similar connections to the tennis experience. Thank you for opening your hearts and minds…

What is the most important thing you have learned about yourself and your individual psychology on the tennis court?

“Tennis reinforces my feelings of inferiority.”
— O.—

“I think that you have to remain calm under all circumstances and never let anyone think you are rattled. Never let them see you sweat!!! Applying it to real life is that the calmer you are the better your reactions—never lead with your heart only your head!”

“I discovered I’m not as ‘nice’ as I thought I was and secretly like being ‘bad’ on the court. In life, I may give way and be polite…on the court, ′stay out of my way or feel my wrath’. Competition can bring out the best and worst in me at times.”

“I am more likely to hit a winning shot when I am about to lose than when I am about to win.”

“It is hard for me to get ready for the next shot, not because I am lazy or spacey, but because I am analyzing the one that I just hit or thinking about how I may lose the game. I live in the past and/or the future and not the present even on the tennis court!”
— R.—

“I have learned that rather than holding on tight, I play much better when I let go.”

— S.—

“I realized that I need to quiet myself from the ground-up and stop rushing my body and my thoughts.
One point at a time.”
— W.—

“I try too hard to make fellow players on the court think that I am good.”
— R.—

“I took up tennis as a social activity, and perhaps a bit of exercise. However, I quickly discovered that the process of learning the game, the strokes and the strategy was very rewarding. I go into every team practice, pick-up game and match pushing myself to get better. And, when I come off the court I think through the areas that I have been successful AND the areas I need to work harder on.  It is all within MY control to change! It is rewarding in a way that nothing else in my life is — I’m hooked :-)”
— L.—

“It feels so good to whack that little bundle of yellow fuzz.
I believe it has awakened in me a feeling of aliveness that had been dulled down by day-to-day routines.”
— C.—

“There are those moments on the court, when with little technical skill or expectation I would make an impossible shot. Even without being able to do it again, the idea that I could do it even once, encourages me to believe that those moments can happen in life the same way they do on the court. Being in the moment, letting go and not worrying so much about the result but instead finding joy in the act itself — can make the great and unexpected happen.”
— M.—

What’s your answer? Tweet us @cg_courtgirl

For well crafted insights on ways to improve your psych game, the book “Going the the Net: Winning the Psychological Game of Tennis” can be found at goingtothenet.net

Get out and play!