Regardless of how hard you throw, how you swing or how much movement you have, you should have a certain look about you. No, I’m not talking about make up, or headbands or uniform color. I’m talking about how YOU look from the inside out.
When should this look happen? All. The. Time. – at practice, in games, walking up to the ballpark, at lessons, warming up.
“The Look” will eventually become a part of your every day life, even outside of softball. The Look will be something you feel at school walking down the hall, or walking into a room where maybe you don’t know anyone. (That is when The Look REALLY matters even more…when softball is done).
No matter what else is going on, you always have The Look in your back pocket. You own it, nobody else does.
Best thing about The Look is that it’s free. You can’t buy it with make up or a designer top. It’s not about those things. The Look is priceless, but it pays off in so many different ways.
Sooo…what is she talking about? Where should you start if you’ve never thought about The Look before?
Let’s start with getting out of the car at the ballpark. Think about your look as your two feet hit the ground from getting out of the car. Grab your bat bag from out of the car confidently. This is where it can begin. Walk confidently. Keep fidgeting to a minimum. Walk with your eyes up and have a soft focus in front of you. If someone is walking with you or comes up to talk to you, look them right in the eye when they are talking. When you walk into the ballpark confidently, you set the tone for how you’re going to approach your game(s) that day – composed and poised.
Soon, The Look will be something you don’t have to think about anymore. The Look is just something you will do; it will become a habit. It’s something you want to do because you notice the response you get from other people around you – teammates, adults, friends. They will look at you differently; they will talk to you differently. They may even be a little bit more intimidated to go up against you if they are on the other team. This is exactly what you want. You want to win the unspoken confidence battle before a pitch is even throw in the game. You want to be one step ahead of everybody else. That’s exactly where you like to be. One step ahead is how you play your game.
You’re warming up with your team now. Still represent the way you want to look even if your teammates and friends don’t have the look yet. They will. Soon. Once they see what you can accomplish with The Look.
You’re confident, but humble. You’re eager, but calm. You feel prepared. You’re having fun, but you’re focused.
If you’re warming up in the bullpen, you’re not constantly messing with your hair or pulling on your uniform. You’re not showing emotions after every pitch – good or bad. If someone walked up and just watched your body language, they would never be able to tell if you were having a good warm up or a bad warm up. You want to be consistent with The Look. How you play will have ups and downs, but The Look doesn’t know the difference.
You’re content with exactly how you feel and you’re remembering to stay where your feet are. No matter how you warmed up, it’s your job to have The Look if it’s the best warm up or the worst warm up – The Look doesn’t know the difference between a good warm up and a bad warm up. Every day will feel different, but The Look should feel un-phased.
It’s game time. Your teammates look at you in the and they feel more confident just because they see it in your eyes every time you catch the ball back from your catcher that you’re beyond assured in what you are doing in the circle, and you believe in yourself. You aren’t scared to look your teammates in the eyes out in the field, point a finger at them and say, “Hey, we got this.” Your eyes are up. Your shoulders are back. Your focus is on your team and your catcher. As a hitter, your teammates can tell you are focused and collected in your at bat in the box. They will strive to have the same presence and confidence as you when they go up to the plate. In return, they will begin to have better ABs after following your lead.
Regardless of the outcome of the game, win, loss, completely game, getting pulled in the first inning, it has no effect on The Look. The Look knows no result. The Look only believes in you and the abilities that are within you. The Look doesn’t remember what happened the last time you played. It only knows the future. It only knows chasing after your dreams in a way that is professional, mature and determined.
The Look knows no age. Best thing about the look is that it has no boundaries. It doesn’t know location. The Look only knows you.
I CHALLENGE you to be aware and practice The Look. Take pride in every single thing that you do. All of your movements should have a look of confidence, posture and poise about you. From tying your shoes to the way you take a deep breath before every pitch you throw. When you walk into a room, make your presence known. Not because you are the loudest one in the room with your voice, but because your presence alone before even saying a word, speaks volumes about the way you feel about yourself. Remember, The Look is from the inside looking out.
Most importantly, the Look is yours; it is no one’s to take from you – not your parents, not your coaches, not a significant other,
not your teammates, and definitely not the other team. The Look means you are in control of your emotions. The Look can take on anything thrown at her and know that at the end of the day, YOU belong. But before others believe it, YOU have to believe it.
If you don’t feel confident enough yet to have the look, fake it. Fake it until you grow into it, because I promise, you WILL grow into it.
Even faking the confidence will feel good and you will be amazed at the results it will produce for you. The best thing about The Look is that it is free. The Look can start when you are ready. Everyone has The Look inside of them, some have just already decided for The Look to join them in their every day lives. If you don’t have it yet…it’s only a matter of time.
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Kids can have “the look” all they want until a piss poor excuse of a coach knocks their confidence right out of them! It amazes me what parents subject their children to by letting someone that is suppose to be a good coach mistreat their children. Got to love the act of favoritism that goes on in ball. Even if the kid isn’t as good as the other kid, in the coach’s eye they are, simply because they like the other kid or the kids parents! We have the creepiest coach that you could imagine and slowly but surely he is having a hard time finding girls to play for him! Coaches should be encouraging and make a kid have confidence. I’m not saying coddle them but don’t knock them down daily just because you don’t like them. If they can’t get past their own inadequate feelings then maybe they should hang up their career. The look comes from good coaching along with good parenting promoting confidence!
Amy… you nailed it. Kimclass… sounds like you should find a different coach or stop making excuses.
i just found your blog while stalking another coaches FB. Thanks for putting all your knowledge on here for the rest of us.
I love to do so! Thanks, Mark!
Hi! To follow up on your topic about “The Look”, people usually always tell me that I look mad. I do not want to seem that I have bad body language. So should “The Look” be serious, happy, mad, ect.? Do you also have any tips for when your pitching isn’t going really well and your really frustrated?
Your look should be pretty fierce. Stoic!
When you’re really frustrated, find something to think bout or a place that you can look at – whether it’s on your glove or on the field, and calm yourself down. Tell yourself to breathe. Maybe think about your favorite song for a second or your favorite place. Maybe you look down and have a word or quote on your glove that you can read a couple of times that reminds you you’ll be ok!