To be honest, what this group photo doesn’t show you is how it capped off an hour of being ridiculously scared of getting hit by the ball. I grew up avoiding sports that involved projectiles!
Earlier while playing, I observed how skilled my colleagues were. I was having fun, yes! But for many moments I was asking silently “why am I here? I’m getting in someone’s way. What do I do when I get the ball — and pass it to the wrong person? Who’ll teach me this, that…”
The answer? The experience will teach you. And that only happens if you can crawl out of your own head. If you can silence doubt (familiar from a struggle during my dragon boat days). Focus! You’ll fail but you must learn from it. Each instance is a nugget to learn from.
What happened? I managed to pass the ball a few times. I learned how to observe the interactions on the pitch. More importantly, I continued playing with my chin up after a lousy kick or block. At the end of the hour, I’m still scared of the ball. Just a little less.