New Year’s Resolutions

by | December 14, 2012, 3:00am 0

We all know the first part of overcoming a “problem” is admitting that you have one.  I have been struggling for quite some time with something, and I feel comfortable enough to admit it online to everyone who can read this. I have spent months having the same discussion with my fiancée, and trying to cover it up. I was in denial for months.

Imagine this: it’s universe point during the pool play game that decides whether or not your team makes it to power pools at the Club Championships. Imagine that your teammate got a huge layout D on the downwind endzone goal line to prevent your opponent from scoring. You pick up the disc, wind blowing in your face, and put it into play at the front corner of the endzone. No pressure, right?

Well, that’s what happened to me in Sarasota.

Kelly Tidwell's game winning catch heard round the world from the Club Championships. (Photo by Kevin Leclaire -

The outcome of the play was not successful. I chose to huck the disc upwind, essentially 40 yards straight in front of me. I threw a 50/50 ball up to one of my go-to receivers and it wasn’t completed. After we lost the game (on a ridiculous layout toe-the-line grab by Kelly Tidwell from Brute Squad), I started crying. The feeling of letting my teammates down in a big game really got to me. We lined up, we slapped hands. I selfishly thought to myself over and over, “Robyn, you know better than that.”

Nearly two years ago my coach, Mike Lun, wrote something about me on the Saucy Nancy blog that seems to contradict everything about the player I have become. He said just about the nicest thing anyone could possibly say, “Robyn isn’t afraid to roll the dice…her instincts and Ultimate IQ allow her to take risks. The dice just seem to always roll in her favor.”

Well, this time the dice didn’t roll in my favor, and I failed.

If you think I’m a reckless gambler with the disc in my hands, I have “calmed down” considerably since 2011. I love the player I am becoming; I am proud of that player. Yet, at the same time, I have become my biggest critic. I internally scold myself for every mistake I make in between points. Mentally, what is the difference between now and then?

The answer: unreasonably high expectations.

Trying to attain unreasonably high expectations has been both a blessing and a curse. It pushes me to get up at 5 am to go work out. It pushes me to constantly think about how I can become a more adaptable player. It drives me to improve. The problem is, when I don’t execute 100% of the time, I kick myself hard. There isn’t another person in the world who can bring me down quite like me.

At this point in the article you might be thinking, “Wow, you sound like you might have a problem..” My friend, that is the point. The first part to getting over it is admitting you have a problem and not being ashamed of it. I do. I have become an offensive perfectionist. I knew this was a problem before the season, so I enlisted the help of a friend who happens to be a life coach. With the help of Paula, lots of journaling, and focused reflection, I finally get it.

My expectations are unrealistic. I cannot hold myself to 100% execution, because even the best players out there make mistakes. The thing about rolling the dice is that failure will happen; rather, what matters is that you have the guts to get to the table in the first place. Realistically, every play has a risk. As a player it is up to you to decide if the risk outweighs the reward. We talk a lot about statistics, about execution, about consistency. But as you start 2013, at whatever level you play at, I encourage you to make a New Year’s resolution that involves being more of a risk taker.

Develop that backhand huck you’ve always wanted. Get your first layout D. Try a hammer in a game. Make up a play with your friend to throw a lefty no-look scoober for a score in summer league AND execute it in a game. Tryout for that club team you always wanted to go try out for.

Guess what, you might fail the first few times you try. But the better thing is, you just might succeed. In fact, you might start to succeed more than you fail. Either way, you’ll become a better player and a more fulfilled person. Do not become obsessed with perfectionism, because you’ll never really love what you do until you accept that you won’t be perfect.

What are you waiting for? Do it.

Happy hucking everyone.

Feature photo of Robyn Fennig gambling… (Photo by Kevin Leclaire –

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