The running dialogue you have going on in your head (even when you aren't reading) is called your "self talk." In fact, although you have thoughts you can't fully express verbally, you could say that thinking is talking to yourslef. Thus, you do it all the time.
What do you say when you talk to yourself about your ability to play baseball?
Remember that what you think often determines how you play. Your thinking consists of your self-talk, along with your imagery. Thus, the words you say to yourself impact how confident you feel, making self-talk a pretty important topic. We are not always aware of what we are saying to ourselves. That's a good thing because if we were aware all of the time we'd go crazy.
However, this is also dangerous because you may be trash talking yourself by saying "I stink," "I can't hit," or "I may never get anyone out" but you aren't aware that you are doing it, you won't tell yourself to stop saying it!
Because of all the failure that is built into baseball, alot of players spend a great deal of time talking negatively to themselves. Your self-talk is something you need to be aware of, at least to some degree. Most important though, make sure you choose to talk to yourself in an encouraging, confidence-enhancing way. In short, talk to yourself the way you'd talk to your best friend.
HOW TO USE SELF-TALK TO ENHANCE YOUR PERFORMANCE
Figure out what you are saying to yourself when playing your best baseball will help you use self-talk to your best advantage. Say that to yourself whether you feel that way or not.
Here are a few examples of self-talk statements you can repeat to yourself anytime:
General:-"I am totally focused on each pitch"
-"I have paid the dues and I am trusting my ability."
"Some players are UNCOMMON because of their God-given natural abilities, like being blessed with the height of Yao Ming or the vertical jump of Michael Jordan. Others have to work to become UNCOMMON.
Steve Kerr of the Chicago Bulls shot five hundred free throws to make himself UNCOMMON.
The truth is most people have a better chance to be UNCOMMON by effort than by natural gifts. Anyone could give that effort in his or her chosen endeavor, but the typical person doesn't, by choosing to do only enough to get by."
Everybody judges players differently. I judge a player by what he does for his team and not what he does for himself. The name of the game is self-sacrifice.”—Billy Martin, New York Yankees
Individual commitment to a group effort—that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work.”—Vince Lombardi, Green Bay Packers
I don’t get a big charge out of being the leading scorer. The object of competing is winning. I just try to do what has to be done for us to win. That might be anything at any time—defense, rebounding, passing. I get satisfaction out of being a team player.”—Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Los Angeles Lakers
WORKERS get the most out of themselves; when a body has limited talent, it has to muster all its resources of character to overcome this shortcoming. If you think you are working hard, you can work harder. If you think you are doing enough, there is more that you can do. No one really ever exhausts his full potential.
Winning takes character and intelligence. It is the most important thing you can do because it’s a reaffirmation of your character.
“Players always want to blame someone else or circumstances out of their control for their problems. It’s an embarrassing state. Many of today’s players don’t want to be embarrassed, so they spread the embarrassment. The coach didn’t play him enough or he didn’t get enough shots or he has a banged up finger. You find a way not to accept the blame. The better players learn to say, ‘I played bad, but tomorrow I’ll play better.’ A lot of younger players are afraid to admit they have bad nights, but everybody has bad nights and it’s how you rebound from those bad nights that dictates what kind of player you are going to be.”—USA Today interview with Michael Jordan