June 25, 2019

Freedom from the Thoughts of Winning: What Andre Agassi Can Teach You About Sales

When we talk about the greats of the game of tennis, it’s easy to get caught up in the modern era.

The likes of Federer and Nadal may have taken the game to new levels. But it’s important to remember the players of the past who can also teach us valuable lessons.

Andre Agassi is one such player.

A multiple grand slam winner, Agassi was once ranked as the best player in the entire world.

And he has a valuable lesson to teach salespeople about the art of winning.

Freedom from the Thoughts

In his autobiography, Agassi wrote:

“Freed from the thoughts of winning, I instantly play better. I stop thinking, start feeling. My shots become a half-second quicker, my decisions become the product of instinct rather than logic.”

There’s a clear message here.

Pressure can be the enemy of success.

When Agassi allowed his desire for success to consume his thoughts, he lost a step on the court. He couldn’t play from instinct because he’d clouded his own mind.

The pressure would weigh on him in an almost literal sense and it affected everything that he did.

When he freed himself from that pressure during his comeback, he found himself performing much better.

The Lesson

It’s so easy to blame yourself when things don’t go as you expected. 

That’s what Agassi would do when clouded by his thoughts of winning.

Sometimes, you need an answer for why a situation occurred as it did. And blaming yourself seems like the natural solution.

Try walking away from the situation and thinking about it for a while. Write down your thoughts and feelings as well as considering all of the factors that led to the situation.

Free yourself from the constant need to win and you’ll relieve the pressure that you place on yourself.

Once you stop blaming yourself, you’re free to adapt to a changing environment.