Becoming the best in your team or school is a dream of many, having people look up to you is immensely satisfying, but getting there is not easy. To become the best player that you can be takes massive commitment and requires huge sacrifices, it is not an easy journey.

You have to take responsibility for your own training outside of official practices, while you need to ensure your work rate at the official practices cannot be faulted. Your total and unflinching commitment is the only way to become successful.

Below is a list that I feel is needed in order to become the best player that you can be:

1.) Set your own fitness/strength standards. – You must be intent on maximising your potential in both body and mind.

2.) Eliminate avoidable mistakes from routine skills by concentrating extremely hard at practice

3.) Extend your range of skills to cope with all situations in the game

4.) You must feel that if you give enough, you can win the match by yourself right up to the final whistle.

5.) Be more concerned with what you do badly, rather than with what you do well.

6.) Reject any small amount of complacency about your abilities.

7.) Seek whatever help is available, inside or outside your school or club.

8.) Underline your commitment to your team mates in practices and matches.

9.) Adopt an athletic lifestyle, staying focused throughout the year.

10.) Become acquainted with exhaustion until you see it as a friend who lets you drive yourself harder than your opponent can.

11.) To produce 110% even when you feel like death and your body is screaming ‘NO’, that demands the best kind of pride and self-discipline.

12.) Set high levels of hard work, even higher than that of your coach.

13.) Set regular goals and work tirelessly to achieve them. Every training session you attend you must have goals written down and you must be prepared to work hard to achieve them. For example you aim to not drop a pass all day even between drills and you aim to not miss a tackle the entire practice. That is achievable if you concentrate for the entire practice, fooling around is only cheating yourself and disrespecting your team mates. It is up to you.

14.) Do not cut any corners. Taking short cuts in training means your not tough enough or grown up enough to take your game to the next level. Cheating in training, means you cheat in games, which effectively says you don’t care about your team mates or the team. That is the worst kind of disrespect.

The BEST athletes follow these rules:

1. They consistently seek to heighten their sense of mental clarity and focus.

In other words, they write down exactly what they want, and then they put blinders on.

They don’t set out to be world-class at three different things at once.

They choose which goal to accomplish first, and they demonstrate laser-like focus.

Nothing and no-one distracts them

2. They create and construct an emotion-based vision of what their life will look and feel like once the goal has been reached.

All the great ones put their vision in writing and visualize it on a daily basis.

3. They utilize positive self-talk and monitor their inner dialogue on a daily basis.

4. They learn how to access their most powerful states of mind and how to move into those states at will.

They know what cues to use to set the right mood so that they can enter their peak performance state. This can be anything from the right music, to positive self talk, talking with a mentor, getting psyched up with others ect

5. They hang around only people who are positive and supportive.

Ensure your friends and family are always positive and supportive. If they are not talk to them. If nothing helps find new friends with a similar outlook as you and ignore the negative family members.

6. They keep a running total of their victories in life, and they review them on a regular basis.

This builds confidence and positive expectation.

7. They’re students of the world’s finest minds.

Reading and listening to personal growth/self-improvement materials is a habit.

They study success. They grave success. They will try find anything that may make a difference.

8. They keep a mental training journal of what they are thinking and how they are feeling during the quest for the prize.

The journal crystallizes thoughts and clarifies feelings, which in turn enhance performance.

9. They keep winning in perspective.

Many of them cut out articles from the front section of the newspaper that involve the hardships of others.

They paste them in their mental training journal and review them weekly to remind them to keep winning in its proper place.

10. They make a conscious decision to do their very best, and let the chips fall where they may.

They monitor their results, but focus on execution.

You have to perform first before you can reap any rewards or recognition.