The Magnetic Power Of Softball Success Or Failure


The Magnetic Power Of Softball Success Or Failure Written By John Michael Kelly

As a kid I used to marvel at the magic of a simple magnet; the power and strength it has to attract or repel other objects to or from it. In fact a magnet produces a magnetic field around it that makes it super easy to attract non-magnetized metal objects and repel the polar opposite end of other magnets.

The stronger the magnetic field the more powerful the magnet's ability to attract. The weaker the magnetic field the more difficult it is to attract.

In the very same “magical” way your athlete or team attracts or repels their success on game day by the power and strength of their very own magnetic field; their perceptions, their thoughts and their emotions.

Success or failure on the field or court is always a cause and effect dynamic. Like a magnet success or failure are predictable outcomes based on the athlete's mindset (or magnetic power).

A magnet has no choice but to attract or repel based on the quality of its internal magnetic field (that dictates the result)….which is, thus, totally predictable. In the same way your athlete or team's game day performance results are also totally predictable based on the quality of their cumulative mindset (the sum total of past experiences and the perceptions, beliefs and thoughts about those experiences).

Let's take a look at the “magnetic” mindset that attracts and produces athletic performances that consistently meet or exceed potential:

1. A mindset rooted in confidence (based on perceptions and beliefs about previous successes).

2. Process, not results driven (the recognition that game mastery takes time).

3. Expectancy for success (“can do” thinking).

4. Exceptional preparation (physical and mental) and a clearly defined plan (desire to be the best).

5. Laser focus (poise when it matters most).

Now let's take a look at the “magnetic” mindset that attracts and produces athletic performances that are consistently below potential:

1. A mindset rooted in doubt (based on perceptions and beliefs about previous failures)

2. Solely driven by results (elevating anxiety and frustration levels).

3. Expectancy for failure (“can't do” or “I'm not sure” thinking).

4. Average preparation (physical, likely no mental) and no plan.
5. Low or sporadic level of focus (caused by feelings and thoughts of doubt, focusing on past failure).

Cultivating the magnetic mindset for consistent athletic success takes time for any younger athlete. However as a parent or coach you can look for clear signs your athlete or team is attracting or repelling success. 

Here are a few of the signs you might observe that indicate success is likely:

1. An excitement to practice or play (high energy).
2. Decisive actions on the field or court (no doubt).

3. A calm, relaxed confidence before and during the game.

4. Extremely coach-able; always looking for ways to improve their game.

Great body language; particularly after game adversity hits.

Here are a few of the signs you might observe that indicate success is unlikely:

1. A lack of desire to go to practice or work on the side (low energy).

2. Body language on the field or court that indicates frustration, anger or sadness; particularly after a mistake.

3. Higher levels of anxiety before the game or at pivotal moments of the game (a fear of failure).

4. Defensive posture when approached by coach or parent about performance.

5. Indecisive actions during a game (doubt – an unwillingness to swing or shoot or pass).

So how can you as parent or coach help your athlete(s) to magnetize success rather than failure on game day?

A mindset that attracts athletic failure is full of doubt, false perceptions and erroneous beliefs about ability and possibility that lead to thought patterns of failure; an expectancy for low performance is inevitable in this scenario. 

To break the cycle of self-sabotage and “catastrophizing” you need to challenge your athlete's beliefs about themselves and help them to maintain more PMA (present moment awareness) and not dwell on past mistakes or failures. Help them to remember past successes, and reinvigorate their goals and reasons for playing the game.

As a point of comparison a mindset that attracts athletic success is full of energy, confidence and PMA that insures the necessary relaxed game focus to play at a consistently high level. Athletes with this mindset have clearly defined goals and a passion for the game.

So how is your athlete or team using their internal magnet? 

As always, success is a choice that always begins between the ears! Remember, knowledge is power, so help your athlete(s) to understand the power of their thoughts to dictate and predict their level of success on the field or court.

Thanks for reading!

Fastpitch Magazine

John Michael Kelly

John Michael Kelly

John Michael Kelly: John Michael Kelly, America’s Sports Confidence Coach, is known for skyrocketing the self-confidence and game performance levels for thousands of youth athletes and teams from coast to coast by reducing the stress and increasing the joy for playing the game! John also coaches travel softball with the 18u and 18 Gold teams for The Next Level (“TNL”) organization in sunny San Diego. You can follow John at and

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