Basketball Mental Aspects - Create A Compelling Story
by Anthony B. Lanzillo

From the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook
"Helping coaches coach better..."

Tone Lanzillo is a mental prep coach to athletes who want to be mentally prepared to play their best game. He has worked with student-athletes, from middle school through high school and into college, in such sports as basketball, football, soccer and lacrosse. Over the past several years, he has written for a number of sports blogs and websites, including FirstDown Playbook, Coaches Training Room, Ultimate Hockey Source, and Lax Playbook.

Contact: Anthony B. Lanzillo

"You get to write your life story. Will you be heroic or just someone trying to get by? Will you be the star or someone sitting on the end of the bench." - Bob Rotella - How Champions Think

"It's not about the performance - it's about the story behind the performance." - Rasmus Ankersen - The Gold Mind Effect

Every basketball player is a story teller. Every day, this player tells himself a story about who he is, where he came from and what his future will probably look like. The story, inside the player's head, will have a major impact upon how he sees himself as an athlete, and how he interprets what happens in his sports life. And this story will influence the decisions and choices he makes on a daily basis.

Hoosiers... what a story!
Hoosiers... what a story!

I just spoke to a college basketball coach the other day who is trying to get his team ready for their first game, and already has a player who is nervous and discouraged. This player is wondering if he made the right choice for college, upset about not being one of the starters and is worried that he won't be successful. There is no doubt in my mind that this basketball player is telling himself a story that is not empowering, and is draining his energy, enthusiasm and enjoyment for the game.

Because this player is thinking and worrying about things out of his control, he is looking at his sports life as a victim, and sees various events and experiences through a negative lens. This story will pull him down emotionally and could contribute to him making the wrong choices and decisions as a basketball player.

As a basketball coach, especially at the beginning of your season, you want to encourage your players to create compelling stories about their lives as basketball players. You want these players to have a positive self-image and truly believe in themselves. You want players who are self-driven, and know how to inspire and motivate themselves to play up to their potential.

In creating a compelling story, the players can begin by recalling and remembering why they started playing the game. They can reflect upon what initially attracted them to basketball and what they love about the game. They can identify various events in their sports life where they met and rose above different challenges or obstacles to become better players. And they can review negative experiences from the past and how they put them into a positive frame of reference.

Your players need to create stories that provide a vivid and clear picture of every empowering moment from their sports lives that helped them become the athletes they are today. They need to create stories that put themselves in a productive and pro active state of mind. They need stories that compel them to give their best effort at every practice, training session and game. The players need stories where they see themselves as the hero who can rise above any challenge or obstacle in the future.

Copyright 2016, Anthony B. Lanzillo

Contact: Anthony B. Lanzillo

Related page: Basketball Mental Prep Playbook