Ugh. The daunting task of trying to achieve victory over the enemy that lives in my head. Anyways, forget that. Let me start somewhere else.
This past September my dream came true. My mom, my sister and I made the trip to NYC to see the US open. We were hungry for victory and to witness it in person. I have been a Nadal fan since he first came on the scene and my mom and sister have been Federer fans. We aren’t sure how much longer they will play so we forced ourselves to do the trip so that we could all die happy women. As a side note, I will die the happiest woman because my man WON. Boom. Game. Set. Match. Victory.
I love the way Nadal plays…he’s a little energizer bunny. He has millions in his bank account but he still runs his pants off (unfortunately, not literally) for every single point as if he is 17 and still trying to get his big break. I love the scowl on his face, his famous jump and fist pump after an amazing point and, of course, the end of match celebration when he takes his shirt off to put on a dry one after the victory.
Last year he faced this other guy, Nick Kyrgios, in a couple of the majors. Kyrgios has amazing potential…it is believed he could easily be in the top 10 if he could get his act together. But he is a hot head. He has broken countless racquets, QUIT matches, not tried, yells at the crowd, gives the umps verbal beatings….he is unbelievable in all ways of stupidity. He cannot keep it together and is yet to walk into and away from a Grand Slam Final with a victory.
This past Sunday, 60 Minutes interviewed Rafael Nadal. Near the end of the segment, they showed a bunch of the top players breaking racquets at some point in their career. They mentioned this to Nadal and asked him how many he has broken. He started to laugh and put up his hand in the shape of a ‘0’. The interviewer asked him why that was. His explanation was that his family would never allow that kind of behavior and that it shows a loss of control.
No matter what is happening in the match, he needs to keep his emotions under control in order to play the way he wants and to get the victory. To break a racquet is to give in to your emotions.
I was so proud of him at that moment thinking, “That’s MY man.”
Let’s move on to yesterday, shall we? The day was going along beautifully…I had a string of clients that I just ADORE. And, if you have been following me at all, you will know that I am trying to learn to be a person of thankfulness…to stop and take note of every little good thing even if it looks like a bad thing. This is not my natural tendency but I’m working on it.
However, there is a recurring source of stress and frustration in my life that has been there for a few years. It breaks me down to a person that I don’t want to be. I am naturally an impatient hot head and this situation feeds that in me. And I let it. Even amongst my friends who deal with the very same issue, I feel like a failure because so often I mishandle it. Yesterday was no exception.
When I got home from dropping Summer off I was ON FIRE! Ted came in and asked if I was ok and I UNLEASHED…F-bombs included which is not a part of my daily vocabulary at all. Ted looked a little stunned and when I was done he quietly left the room.
That was when it hit me. Nadal is my hero but I am not like him at all.
I have broken many figurative racquets in my life, including yesterday.
I give in to my emotions and have a fit.
I am ashamed to say that I am more like Nick Kyrgios.
I want to quit, I want to yell, I want to give people verbal beatings…
So today I need to regroup. I need to take a deep breath. Especially if I want the victory.
When you watch Nadal, he is very particular…almost OCD. He must drink his drinks in a certain order…on a change over he must leave his bottles facing a certain direction and you can see him slowly and methodically do this. He does the same routine before each serve. Bounce the ball, pause, look at his opponent, bounce the ball again, tuck his hair, wipe his eyebrow, one more glance off to the side, and then serve. It is all deliberate. It keeps him steady and calm.
By 5:30 yesterday I had thrown out all of my strategies that normally keep me calm…one being writing down things I’m thankful for even in difficult moments. Today I need to take that time. Practice.
I’ve been in physio for the past month for a knee injury and she emphasizes the need to deliberately do the exercises every single day. But I get lazy and choose not to…I shrug off their importance. But it is those small, simple repetitions that will rehabilitate my knee. Why on earth do I choose not to do them????? Don’t I want a healthy knee???
Same in my life today. Don’t I want a healthy Nancy? Why do I choose not to practice the things that will help me to attain that? Choose to not do my exercises? Things like praying and writing things down that I’m thankful for in those moments.
Today is a new match. I have to be deliberate…place my water bottles just so no matter how long it takes, do all the little things that calm me before I proceed. I will leave my gratitude journal open today, ready to be written in…and I will wear comfortable pants so that I can drop to my knees as soon as the moment requires it.