Crafting Your Winning Season-in Sports and Life


2013 OVC Champs TTU. Photo by Gina Parris

2013 OVC Champs TTU. Photo by Gina Parris

You are as much creators as you are competitors. If you don’t understand the laws that govern creation, you will always be at the mercy of competition.

Recently I was addressing a clubhouse full of college baseball players on one of my favorite subjects: Crafting a Winning Season.

It always makes me smile when players “get” the fact that they are as much creators as they are competitors. When we build businesses, we usually discover this truth. We somehow end up reading classic books like Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. Then we realize that our imagination and clarity of vision, along with white hot desire, give birth to the means for our dreams to come true. We realize that true success happens on the creative plane more than just the competitive one.

How does that relate to competition then?

1. Victory, Like Everything Else, is Created Twice.

Right now, look around you for something that was handcrafted that you hold dear. When I’m with athletes they usually have some piece of equipment nearby. In our house, beloved items tend to include baseball gloves. I mean, just look at the craftsmanship!

I can hold my kid’s glove and know it was created twice. Maybe more than that. It was created first in somebody’s imagination. Then it may have been custom ordered online while my son visualized how cool it would look. Then it arrived, fully made by hand. But it doesn’t show up in the flesh until after being fleshed out in the invisible realm.

The same things can be said about those gorgeous championship rings. (I happen to know that the boy in the photo above, along with his teammates that year, talked as much about those rings as they did about anything else. They wanted a ring!)

This concept also applies to your physical appearance, or your house, or your team culture or your season.

I know it’s more important to focus on the process than the product, but thats AFTER you know for certain that you want the product. Start with the end in mind, as Steven Covey used to say. Start with clarity and passion and then the how will start to reveal itself.

2. You Don’t Have to Fake it Till You Make it

I want to cringe every time some guru says, “Just fake it till you make it.”

One of the strongest needs of our nervous system is being congruent with our self-identity. If we think we are faking something, eventually our behavior will snap back to our comfort level. If we know we are being fake, we will snap back to real. This is because internal conflict is an enemy of peak performance.

I say its much better to BE it till you see it. There is a part of you that knows you can already be the person you need to be to reach your goals. When you can focus on being, then you find it natural to do the right actions. Then those actions create the result you want. It’s called Be, Do, Have.

In contrast, most people get caught up in thinking if they can have something first, then they would do something different and finally be happy, content, powerful, whatever.

That’s backwards. Start with Be. Be victorious today on your way to a winning season. As an added bonus this will save you from that dire moment when you finally crush a goal only to stare at the ceiling the next week and think, “Well crap. I feel exactly the same as before.” When you love the state of being, there is no letdown.

3. Love the Process as its Own Reward

Your passion in the pursuit of the victory helps form the victory. I know this seems nebulous, so let’s say that championship ring is your goal. You love the ring for everything it represents – teamwork, sweat and tears, excellence, growth, reward.

If that is your goal, then you are like an airplane and the goal is programmed into your GPS.

The two wings of that airplane then are faith and gratitude. If you can’t get solid in those, then you start to take a nose-dive. I know you’ve felt that before. Team chemistry gets bad. Negativity sets in. Doubt and apathy eat away at the passion.

Your job is stay clear on the target with faith and gratitude. Build the faith and gratitude of your teammates, especially if you’re the coach! That culture gives birth to hard work. The work itself is the reward.

Sure, we can’t control the outcome, but if we fall in love with the process, the outcome tends to take care of itself.

Your winning season is crafted – first in your imagination, then in the physical, just like your favorite piece of equipment.

There’s much more to it of course, but think about dreams you’ve achieved in the past. There was a point where you knew it was a “done deal,” before you saw it, right?

I’d love to hear about your favorite victory.

Until next time-

Win your game and love your life!

I’m in your corner,





Gina Parris is a speaker and performance coach for the Competitive Soul. She has been empowering people around the world for 30 years to reach their God-given potential in life, love & sport. She specializes in turning stress into strength. To inquire about having her speak on your campus, click here:


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