I wanted to get really good at tennis.
I would show up early, and warm up at the wall for 30 minutes, just to get the feel.
I would drop feed balls to myself.
I'd take private lessons, enter clinics, and hit for hours.
The tennis bug had hit me hard.
But there was a problem.
When opportunities would come up to get on a league or play tournaments, I would pass.
I thought I wasn’t ready for real matches, that I needed to practice more.
That I needed the perfect serve, and needed to get to the next level, first.
Look, I wanted to be a good tennis player.
But I had it all wrong.
See, when I eventually started to play matches I was met with some truths.
I was getting beat by people that were lower level players.
I would lose to people more than twice my age, regularly.
But they weren’t lower level players.
They had been playing matches and knew how to play actual tennis.
I was the lower level player.
I wasn't passing on the matches because I wasn't good enough, or didn't have the perfect strokes.
I was just afraid to lose.
But a hidden truth – what I was really missing out on – are the highs and lows that only match play can bring.
The competition, the games, the points – the epic battles that you’ll never forget.
Yeah, when you start playing matches you'll lose. Sometimes badly.
You just have to get out there and start trying.
It'll be worth it.