Welcome to The Best Lack All Conviction Blog
This blog is not about anything other than the things I want to write about.
For a long time this blog tried to be about darts and may yet again talk about darts
but for now it is about whatever suits my fancy.
If that entertains, engages or inspires you, then I guess we are in good company.
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I have been shooting some nice darts of late. As nice as I have ever shot and certainly a lot nicer than I thought myself capable of when I first started. Good old fashioned dedication and determination (and possibly a little addiction) combined with the fantastic improvements I I have seen to my stroke with Flight School I think can be attributed to this rise in general proficiency, and yet the one thing that isn't quite mine, hovering tantalizingly just out of my reach is the ability to put opponents and games away. It is frustrating, but I guess my choice whether I let the frustration build (or worse allow the seeds of defeatism and excuses germinate) or simply use this as an opportunity to learn, both in darts and of my own character and how I handle pressure, competition, expectation and a whole load of other things.
In all but a few cases I am not losing because they are a better player but because they get the job done when the job needs to get done and I have the chance and squander it.
This I feel will get better with more experience, as my performance levels grow and become more consistent and I become more confident and as I become more emotionally acclimatized to these situations.
One thing that has been helping my general game and I'd say before too long help my finishing are a few thoughts I saw posted in the SEWA dart forums about what sort of mindset to take at the oche. The idea, very roughly paraphrased is to keep your thoughts to what you are doing and what you can control rather than the situation or what you want to have happen. Thus 'stay calm. Smooth stroke' is fine but 'I am going to win now' or 'If I don't hit this I'm the world's biggest chump' are not as they are either overtly negative or set you up for a fail and deal with all of the parts of the equation you cant control. This has been showing not only immediate positive results in my play, but as also significantly has lowered the build up of anxiety I usually accumulate over a series of games in a night. This is not something that George Silberzahn delves into too deeply in Flight School, but if there is any 'sports psychology' advice he gives it is that you should never 'compete against yourself' and to me this approach dovetails nicely with that frame of thought.
As for the winning and losing there is one place where winning has been happening and that has been with my wife as we won our second consecutive 501 doubles match last night and then she went on to be the only person on our team to win their singles game. I am amazingly proud of her, but maybe hope I can keep pace!! I certainly think the team captain will pair us up together again. Smooching your significant other between turns calms the nerves and just might throw the other players off just a smidgen.
For me, as with my wife if we put the time in the wins will come out. I asked George about my predicament and he simply said
"Just stay with it and the wins will come. Way too early to become concerned. Wait until this time next year."
Thanks George. I think I can do that. Looking forward to it in fact. I love my darts.