How FPL is helping me get better – This article is penned by our contributor Stadium of Sports.
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I decided to take a few days off from the weekend.
Having some time off has given me a window to freshen up my mind, and evaluate the state of play in FPL.
But what I want to talk about is something I found when engaging with the fantastic #FPLcommunity on Twitter. Support, advice and a sense of belonging. Now this might sound silly but it is important to me, so bear with me.
I’ve struggled with mental health and my biggest challenge was acknowledging it and getting help.
I’m not the most brilliant at talking as I like to just get on with it. I’m one of those who dismisses it and carries on, keeping myself busy and bottling things up. Unfortunately bottles burst and that happened to me. Then it got tough because every day was an effort.
I have got help and thankfully through stubbornness, a bit of strong will and support from my family, has allowed me to manage it and continue moving forward.
What strikes me is when I say stubbornness, strong will and support, I see this with the FPL community. It got me thinking of how much FPL can reflect other aspects of our life.
Red and Green Arrows
We have our red and green arrows, like we have our ups and downs in life.
We have those moments of feeling invincible (triple captaining a Calvert-Lewin hat-trick) or those moments of despair (TAA and Robertson) scoring -1 each . We have hope that the next game is going to be better, the next player is going to get a double digit return to save my game week or elevate it further.
Yes we get frustrated , we knee jerk, we take hits, we shout out the screen, be moody with our loved ones but no matter what, we don’t give up. I’m going to say that again because it’s important, we don’t give up.
I’ve found good people, comrades on twitter who will talk, advise, encourage, laugh with me and also feel my pain. And you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way because if everything was so predictable in FPL, the game would be boring, we would have the same players, there would be less discussion, podcasts, scout notes, articles and the game would fizzle out.
The question I ask myself is do I implement what I do in FPL in other parts of my life?
When I have a bad day at work (red arrow) do I pick myself up and be determined to have a better day tomorrow? Get up and get that green arrow you son of a gun.
Talking the Talk
Do I talk enough about problems I’m facing with my manager, or colleagues or am I too embarrassed and feel the need to solve it on my own? Like getting advice on Twitter about how to improve, or what player to look out for.
When I have an argument at home (we all go through this) do I sulk or try to rectify it as soon as possible? Like I did with Werner, not working out, time to go. (I’m not saying get rid of your other half over an argument by the way, just don’t prolong stuff).
Do I have hope that things will get better? Just like no matter how bad your score is, that next match is going to double it.
FPL Community Support
It’s interesting because I’ve found similarities to what I do in FPL to what I did to get through my personal struggles.
The biggest difference though is the FPL community.
I have felt alone when I had my struggles – too embarrassed to talk, worried what people might say or how they would judge me.
I got to a stage that it was an effort to go the supermarket.
Luckily I had family but also one of my best mates would always banter with me about our FPL league. That lifted me, because it just took the edge of things, a little sunshine through the clouds and got my mind working on a positive track.
The funny thing is that the past couple of years have been the toughest and yet in both years I have won all my mini leagues. I finished the 2018/19 with my best OR inside the the top 25k. Also Liverpool have won the Champions and Premier League in that time.
Always hope for the best. Good times round the corner. For me the FPL community is about support and bringing people together, it is so valuable to our enjoyment and mental well-being. You can never feel like you are alone, and if you do, then reach out, we have each other’s back.
Never Give up
It’s more than a game, it’s a mirror to show what you can do in life if you keep going. Know that you will have green and red days, take the hits, be wild, laugh and cry, speak and support but don’t give up, there is always hope. Be like this in your life and you will end up in a high ranking position.
Like in football, it’s the fans that make the game. In FPL it’s us that bring it to life.
Keep safe and healthy everyone and do not give up. I’ll leave you with my version of a favourite quote from the bad guy Razor Ramon.
Hard work pays off
Dreams do come true
Red arrows don’t last
But FPL players do
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