How do I get over anxiety in sports?

I'm actually a fairly athletic guy. I'm 6 feet, and have a fairly muscular build. Since I was a kid, I always thought way too much about things then necessary. This is something I believe I learned from my parents. For example, when I play basketball, I always start strong, score a few points and play well on defense, but then I soon get in my head, and I start losing confidence. Soon, I can't perform. This affects me with women as well- I'm able to start strong but I start thinking too much. I am certain I was not born an anxious person. I feel like I have several talents that just aren't able to be utilized because of my excessive rumination. I do not want medication, I need to work through this issue. Any ideas?

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Comment by The Dutch Dastard on May 14, 2012 at 2:30am

I think you need to explain this a little more. Do you just start overthinking, so that you can't perform any more, or do you really get anxious or scared. If that, what are you anxious or scared about?

I used to be a fieldhockey goalie (which, for those unfamiliar with the sport is easily comparable to playing american football against a team of very angry baseball batsmen who're batting hard heavy plastic balls at you from 5 yards away). 

As you might understand, seeing an attack coming your way can be pretty scary. I used to try to block this by keeping my mind occupied. I did this by directing the team. As long as i was shouting, calling directions, cheering, or whatever, i couldn't really think about what i was going to do. 

So, don't lock your thoughts in, and let everything else out. Keep your mind occupied.

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