You will not be drafted tomorrow. In fact, you will have to wait three more years before you are considered for a list. You may not think it right now but it’s the best thing for you. These three years will give you time to mature and actually be ready for the challenges AFL throws at you.
Work on the things that you need to improve and you’ll be hungry to prove people wrong. That will be the only motivation you’ll need throughout your career.
“The pain of discipline is nothing like the pain of disappointment.” If you are prepared to make the sacrifices required to be an AFL footballer, the opportunities it will provide, not only for you but your family and friends, will far outweigh any short-term gains.
Football is the ultimate team game, the friendships you make and the people you meet will stay with you forever. Your teammates will be your closest friends, they will spend more time with you than anyone and will understand what you go through like no one else can.
You will have the opportunity to have some amazing mentors and spend time with many intelligent people.
Your hunger and desire to improve and push yourself to be the best you can must be at the forefront of your mind. Knowing that you have done everything possible to be elite will be all that you’ll need. You may not be the best athlete out there but this hard work and professionalism will help bridge the gap.
Self-belief is the most important thing of all. There will be many distractions and many critics. Stay true to yourself and play to your strengths. That is what you’ll be most proud of.
Be humble, loyal and always find a balance between the highs and the lows.