Thursday, June 13, 2024

Federer only won 54% of his points

Roger Federer delivered the commencement address at Dartmouth over the weekend, and it was fantastic.

An Important Point Federer Makes:

Perfection is impossible. In the 1,526 singles matches I played in my career, I won almost 80% of those matches.

Now I have a question for you: What percentage of points do you think I won in those matches? Only 54%.

In other words, even top-ranked tennis players win barely more than half of the points they play. When you lose every second point on average, you learn not to dwell on every shot.

You teach yourself to think: "Okay, I double faulted — it's only a point. … Okay, I came to the net and I got passed again — it's only a point."

Even a great shot, an overhead backhand smash that ends up on ESPN's top 10 plays — that too is just a point.

Here's why I'm telling you this: When you're playing a point, it has to be the most important thing in the world. And it is. But when it's behind you, it's behind you.

This mindset is really crucial because it frees you to fully commit to the next point and the next point after that with intensity, clarity, and focus.