I am 12 years old and my problem is when I am competing and my opponent lies. This pushes my buttons and I go crazy. I lose my focus, I lose my temper and I often lose the game. I can’t let it go and I know my reaction is only hurting me. What should I do?t
Dealing with opponents who lie is a common problem for athletes, especially young ones who don’t yet have the tools to deal with it. What I like to do is to try to understand the situation and look at it from a different angle.
Why does an athlete lie? Probably because he is under a lot of pressure to win and feels he has to win at any cost. He may feel pressure from his coach or maybe from his parents. He may feel that if he doesn’t win, people won’t like him. He may feel humiliated or like a loser if he doesn’t win. In any case, he is under a lot of pressure.
Because of this pressure he feels the only way he can beat you is if he lies. He can’t beat you legitimately because he feels you are better than him. So he lies and makes you crazy.
If you look at this from a different angle, his lying should give you confidence. He can’t win unless he lies because you are better than him.
So next time you are in this situation, remember your opponent is the one under pressure and the cooler you are, the better you can play.