When your best is nothing special, you must master the intangibles that separate winners and losers.
Step 1: Be aloof Focus inward, and act totally disinterested in those jokers on the other team. If you really want to get under their skin, wear a half-smirk, as if you’re amused by the thought of competing against them.
Step 2: Adjust your posture Stand up straight with your shoulders back, and carry yourself with ease and confidence. Swagger a little. Walk like you’ve got brass cojones, and the world will believe you do.
TIP: Maintain eye contact, and be the one to determine when you break it.
Step 3: Have an "episode" Conjure up some wild and unpredictable mood swings, and get your teammates to help you play up your status as a loose cannon. Give the appearance of being a little mentally unhinged, and your competition will be shaking in their cleats.
Step 4: Bulk up Get massive, and wear clothing that highlights those 25-inch pythons. The more intimidating you are, the better.
Step 5: Break out the trash talk Break out your best trash talk. You might be tempted to imitate the greats, but really—it doesn’t have to rhyme. Just tailor your attack to hit your opponents’ major weaknesses, and keep it harsh, simple, and loud.
TIP: Adjust your posture Don’t make threats. You don’t want to have to put your money where your mouth is.
Step 6: Stage a feat of awesomeness Crush the competition’s spirit with your excellence. During warm ups, stage a mini-exhibition for the other team, and show off your most impressive skills.
Step 7: Flirt Unnerve your rivals with a cute wink, or blow a passionate air kiss. Ratchet up the flirtation throughout the game. You’ll either wind up with an utterly confused opponent or a date for the evening.
FACT: Sports psychology was established by a professor at Indiana University in 1898.