UTEP Women's Soccer Blog

 • Aug. 31, 2007
 • Sept. 20, 2007
 • Sept. 25, 2007
Throughout the season, UTEP senior goaltender Jessica Salvi will be bringing you inside the Miner soccer program with blog entries.

Sept. 24, 2007, 11:28 p.m.

Just Breathe

Every now and then, soccer, like life, overwhelms us to the point of exhaustion. Not necessarily just the physical aspect, but also a lot of times the mental aspect can be 10 times worse. When something in our lives, or sport for this particular writing, goes wrong, we frustrate ourselves trying to figure out what that something is and what we can do to fix it. We let it consume us, take over every thought, and completely run us down until we feel like there is no answer, like there's nothing we can do to fix the emptiness inside of us, like we're broken.

This blog isn't so much a team thing, or a motivational UTEP soccer update, but I'm going to give you a brief insight into what it's like to be a competitor, not with the others around, but within oneself.

This season thus far, like I've mentioned before, hasn't been exactly what was pictured... especially for me. The team is finally starting to come together and we're playing so much better than before; I couldn't be happier in that aspect. But, recently it has felt like I'm not really holding up my end of the deal, like I'm staying behind while everyone else is rising to the occasion and playing to what they're capable of, like something inside me is still missing.

I'll be the first one to tell you that there is no bigger critic of mine than myself, and that is true of a lot of people. I haven't necessarily been playing poorly, but I know deep inside that I'm capable of so much more and I'm not performing as I can and should be.

Now my theory thus far has been to analyze every mistake I make, figure out what I did wrong, and furthermore figure out what I need to do to fix it. That works really well... except in situations like the one I'm in now. The problems that I need to fix aren't technical or tactical... they're far beyond the everyday physical stressors of the sport. It's not my footwork, or my hands being off, it's the mental part of my game that's been shaky.

I've been second-guessing myself, hesitating and making little mistakes that just aren't "Jess like." But, to add to it all, I've been over analyzing everything and making it so much worse than it really is. I get too negative when something goes wrong and focus too much on the things I can't change; sometimes I get so wrapped up in it I forget to let go.

To be honest with you, I've let everything get under my skin too much: the fact that it's my last season, that fact that last season went so well and we were so close, the fact that I want so badly for everything to work out well. I've been trying too hard to make everything perfect, that I've been dwelling on every little mistake and instead of getting out of this mess, like quicksand it just pulls me further in.

I think that's typical though of how we all sometimes handle the things in our lives. We let negativity affect us; get so far into our head and hearts that we can't figure out how to get rid of it. And, before we know it, one little mistake or upset leads to 10 more because we get so focused on the negativity and how to fix it we forget to let go and move on, we forget to just breathe. We dwell on our mistakes or unhappiness and try so hard to fix it, that a lot of times we just make it worse. We want so badly for everything to be perfect and try so hard to make it that way, and then when it doesn't happen like we expected, it gets us further down then we already were before.

A lot of times the thing that we're doing wrong, or rather the thing we're forgetting to do..... is just breathe; take a step back, let life run its course and hope it works out for the best. Fix the things that can be changed, and don't try to fix what's out of our control.

Stop trying to make everything perfect and remember what you do have, what you do well, the things that do make you happy, and sometimes we need to let go of the negativity and chill for a bit in our happy place.

Maybe sometimes the best way to fix something is to stop trying to fix it and just breathe.

-Jessica Salvi

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