In many situations, the desire for change collides with the environment. And our environment has a significant influence on our success, no matter what we set out to do. This is especially true for people with whom we spend a lot of time.
For change we need willpower. And our environment can even generate additional resistance with its behavior. This is often an insurmountable obstacle to our efforts. In a supportive environment, on the other hand, we find the same effort easier and more achievable.
Just like penguins need water to swim in, tennis players need a tennis court, other tennis players, and the right trainers to train, practice, play, and just have fun. We all need other people to grow and develop. Unfortunately, we often forget that in our time, which is geared towards a completely exaggerated individuality!
If focusing on our personal strengths can help us tremendously, why do so many people in general, and tennis players in particular, focus on their “weaknesses”? Possible answers lie in our evolution, our genes, social norms and a lack of awareness of our strengths.
Problems and threats often seem more pressing to maintaining human genes than focusing on strengths. Those of our ancestors who were cautious, reserved, and/or alert to problems and dangers were more likely to survive than those who overlooked them.
Focusing on what might be wrong, dangerous or problematic, avoiding it and improving it has become an essential part of the survival of the human species. Much like the focus on what can go wrong, problems seem to hold a magical attraction for many tennis players.
How else can you explain the “swearing”, “whining” or “yelling” on the tennis court? In these tennis players, their sensory structures are more strongly bound to “negative stimuli”.
In what is known as “tunnel vision”, many inexperienced players concentrate primarily on the “problematic” tennis shot and thus close themselves off from the rest of the tennis game. Social norms in particular, such as the classic fear of excessive egocentricity and unnecessary self-praise, prevent us from speaking openly about our strengths.
Our evolution and societal norms contribute to what is arguably the most important reason we focus on weaknesses: many people are simply unaware of their strengths. For example, if you ask tennis players about their weaknesses, many of them get nowhere with their statements and descriptions.
On the other hand, if you ask them about their strengths, they stutter, become very thoughtful or say nothing at all. They just don’t know what their strengths are! Unfortunately, not many of us live and grow up in a positive feedback culture, which can also be observed more and more on tennis courts worldwide.
Please do not get this wrong. Of course, sometimes it’s appropriate to focus on your weaknesses. We should all try to improve our personal weaknesses so that they do not harm us. This is the key to our tennis life! Thanks for sharing your knowledge Bane!