Psychological Traits of a Great Athlete

Sports are loved by countless people from around the globe. They constitute one of the Universal languages that give complete strangers a way to communicate with each other. Many watch them or place bets on them on sports betting websites such as Rivalry. But it’s one thing to watch a sporting event and it’s a different thing to compete in it. When professional sports clubs become interested in a new player, what is it that makes them see potential in that player?

Psychological Traits to Work On as an Athlete

Sports are demanding activities and to excel in them you need qualities like conscientiousness, perseverance, and altruism.


This quality stems from your desire to do things as well as they can be done. When you strive for perfection, you constantly search for mistakes and inefficiencies in your way of doing things. And when you find one, you work hard to remove it or to at least make it less severe.

Conscientious athletes train as much as they can and prioritize their training activities. Whenever they can, they either practice or study something that can make them better. Their attention to detail is off-the-charts and that’s because their aim is to master their sport.

One aspect of sports is that only the very best get to the top. Expertise is developed over many years and the harder you work, the higher your chances of getting the edge that you need.

In the long run, every daily optimization matters. Imagine you’re planning your next 5 years and know exactly what you want to become good at during this time. If you manage to find a daily 30-minute optimization, in 5 years those 30 minutes per day will amount to more than 900 hours. That’s a staggering amount. And when you’re conscientious, such improvements are always on your mind. Because you’re trying to maximize the utility of your time and improve your skills as much as you possibly can.


In sports, you very often lose. Sometimes you get injured. Or you might not make good progress for months. In situations like these, the ability to persevere and stay focused is key. When you win and everything goes according to plan, it’s easy to be motivated and optimistic. What truly matters is how well you deal with disappointments and obstacles.

Top athletes have the ability to try over and over and over until they finally succeed. The goal is not to do it right from the first try, but to do it right eventually.


This is an underrated quality of great athletes, especially in team-based sports. When you’re part of a team, the goal is not to stand out as an individual, but to help your team succeed. This requires you to be less selfish and to put the team first.

Too many athletes ruin their careers because they want to be seen and applauded at the expense of everything else. Instead of thinking about the needs of their teammates and how they could contribute the most to the team effort, they occupy their minds with nonsense. Some even become envious of their colleagues and subconsciously, they’re afraid that they might lose their spot to a better player. That’s the wrong attitude to have in sports.

Critical and Strategic Thinking

You might think that this is not required in sports. But it definitely is. Sports are strategy games with a physical component. They’re practically a form of chess that also involves great physical effort. The better you can analyze a situation, the easier it is to make good decisions. And that analysis is done using your critical thinking and your strategic thinking.

Players who work on their minds as well as on their bodies tend to do better than others. And it’s intuitive why. As was said before, any sport is ultimately a game won through strategy. If you can understand what’s going on and what can be done to improve a given situation, you’re much more likely to find the best solution.

Athletes who can think critically about their game will often spot errors in the opponent team’s strategy., as well as their own.

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