Each time I play tennis or take a lesson, I find myself getting more life pointers than actual points on the court. Note: the lack of "points on the court" is a "user issue" - not a conceptual failure. I am sure the tips below would also work well on the court if executed properly. With that said, consider borrowing the tennis pointers below for the game of life. In that arena, I've found them immensely helpful and relatively easy to apply.
As with all games, remember to have fun and be a good sport.
The Middle Solves The Riddle
A tennis coach of mine used this phrase regularly to get us to hit the ball down the middle while playing doubles. When done properly, it often wins the point.
Consider how moving more toward the middle might impact you (or the world) when we are faced with divergent perspectives. So often we cling to our edges, when we may be able to find some common space toward the middle which creates an opening to move forward together.
Keep Your Eyes Forward If you Don't Want To Get Hit In The Face
Pretty simple and obvious, when your partner is serving, keep your eyes forward or risk a black eye.
So often when all we want is to have forward momentum, we find ourselves looking back. We look back at missed opportunities, we look back at stumbles and falls, we look back to see if anyone is watching us...a lot of looking back and missing what's in front of us. If you want to move forward, keep your gaze (and more importantly, your thoughts) in front of you.
Always Set Your Partner Up For Success
With every ball you hit, you want to make sure it doesn't come slamming back in your partner's face (or other body part). You want to create a shot that your partner can capitalize on.
Whether at work or at home, setting your partner (and colleagues) up for success sets you up for success. It's plain and simple. Absolutely no one wins when your teammate falls down. What can you do to create an opportunity for your partner to hit a home run?
One Point At A Time
This is particularly helpful when you are losing. Only focus on the point you are currently playing, and don't assume you are going to lose the match. Each point you win can bring you back into the game.
It's easy to get overwhelmed in life and get caught in the BIG picture. Breaking meaty goals or significant life transitions into small steps keeps you focused on the present and what you can accomplish in the now. Give your mind a rest by taking one step at a time and not allowing your brain to jump into over-drive with all the details. When you have a setback, regroup and put your energy toward taking the next step to rebuild your momentum.
"Love All" Is The Beginning
In tennis, you begin each game with "love all" and the score goes up from that point.
• • •
What can you do regularly to re-start your game with "love all"?