May 3, 2009

Excuses

This week I have been thinking about my last tournament on Crooked Lake. I remember the morning how everyone was complaining about the wind and small fish they had been catching. It reminded me of the excuses fisherman make. I wrote an article a few months ago and thought how true it sounded that day. Most of the fishermen were out of it mentally before it started. Let me know what you think of the article:


Excuses
By: Tyler Brinks


You hear them during pre-fish, at the tournament meeting, before takeoff, and most of all after the weigh-in. It seems like bass fisherman have an excuse ready for any situation. I have learned that no matter what the situation is, there is an excuse ready to justify your poor performance. Maybe it was the weather, the water level, the moon phase, the season, the water clarity, or the fishing pressure.

Recently I entered a tournament and started hearing the negative talk the minute I arrived at the lake, and it continued until well after the weigh-in was complete. It seems as if this negativity was the reason so many people came in empty handed or with one or two fish. As the saying goes, “Somebody always catches them” and this tournament was no different, there were two bags over twenty pounds. Obviously, the conditions did not affect all of the fish. I bet if you talked to these fishermen before the tournament they weren’t the ones complaining about the post spawn fish forced to live in a dropping lake during a cold front.

Fishing is a mental game, and as we all know, giving up before the tournament ends is not going to help anyone win. I saw this first hand in this event. My partner for the tournament started the excuses early on, and never caught another fish. I continued to push and was rewarded with a three pound fish minutes before we had to leave.

Usually I am as guilty of this as anyone, and sometimes catch myself playing to the negativity. When things start to go bad, I can sense doubt in myself. It’s almost like in the back of my head I am making excuses for my poor catch and trying to justify my low weight. It is a mental battle out there, and you need every bit of concentration to push you over the top.

The realization that any cast can save the day sounds simple, but it is often forgotten when things get tough. Just remember to stay focused and keep casting. Do not let the negativity bring you down; the next cast could be the winning fish.
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