There will be days when you do not want to go to practice or play a game. You’re tired; the passion has fizzled.
Passion is a funny thing. It burns brightly for a few weeks or months or even years, and then suddenly—for a variety of reasons--the flame dies to almost nothing.
The question you must ask yourself as an athlete is: “Can the fading embers be revived? Or is the flame of sports passion out for good?”
If you feel even a hint of passion smoldering--you still like to watch or talk about the game, you enjoy your teammates and/or coach, you don’t want to throw out your sports equipment--then there’s a good chance your sports passion can be revived.Here’s how:
Make yourself finish the season.
But I’m burned out! Isn’t that going to make it worse?
At first, it might. You may moan and complain and say hateful things about playing, but in the end, you will learn that sometimes the things we really love to do involve hard work and you will learn to work through the discomfort until it becomes fun again.
Make sure you’re taking time off.
You may be determined, passionate and driven. That’s awesome! But everyone needs a break. At least one day a week, at least a few weeks out of the year. And don’t feel guilty when you do. Rest gives your mind and body time to re-charge and come back strong.
Have other interests.
I’m guessing you love sports or you would not be playing. But what else do you love? Even if it’s nothing more than hanging with your friends or watching a good movie or reading a good book...DO IT! Your mind needs a break from competition.
Have fun with teammates doing something that has nothing to do with sports.
This is how teams bond. They laugh, explore, go on adventures--they do things together that do not depend on their sport. The friendships that you cultivate off the field or court could be all the motivation you need.
Have conversations about things other than sports. Just let it rest.
If you are one who tends to want to analyze every play, every hit, every pass, every game, every stat, you may have noticed that others may not join you in your passion. There is a time for talking sports and there is a time to forget about it. Your friends will be glad if you do. And besides, your brain needs a rest from it too.
Watch your sport on TV or go to another team’s game.
Watching others enjoy the game can motivate you to get back out there and give it all you’ve got. There was a reason you chose your sport in the first place. And maybe in the busy-ness of learning to get better, you forgot that reason. Watching the game just for pure fun and enjoyment can help you fall in love with it all over again.
Tired of playing? It’s okay. Really. Everyone needs a break. Take the break, try these suggestions, and then decide if you really want to quit or if you are ready to come back stronger than ever.
"Janis Meredith writes a sports parenting blog that focuses on building character in youth sports. As a coach's wife for 28 years and a sports mom for 17, she sees life from both sides of the bench and wants to help parents and kids make the most of their sports experiences. You can read her blog at http://jbmthinks.com."