Iga Swiatek tells how she blocked out other people's opinion and followed her path

Swiatek shared a very inspiring message to kids through Instagram.

by Dzevad Mesic
Iga Swiatek tells how she blocked out other people's opinion and followed her path
© Getty Images Sport - Julian Finney

World No. 1 Iga Swiatek continues to be a good role model and inspiration for kids as this time the Pole decided to tell a story about how others tried to force her into being a certain type of tennis player and a person but she kept believing her journey and that brought her here today. 

As everyone probably knows extremely well, 22-year-old Swiatek has achieved massive success early in her career as the Pole is a four-time Grand Slam champion and this week she entered her 97th week at the top spot. 

But even Swiatek is no stranger to being criticized and doubted as even today there are people who think that the four-time Grand Slam champion should be doing some things differently. 

After Swiatek became a Grand Slam champion at the 2020 French Open, some still weren't impressed with her talent and were claiming that the Pole must completely change her game or otherwise she would never be a strong force in tournaments outside clay. 

After proving her doubters wrong in that aspect and establishing herself as the best player in the game in the last two years, the Pole started receiving certain criticism regarding her introverted personality as some have an issue with that and think that she needs to be much more open in many ways. 

Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek © Getty Images Sport - Emmanuel Wong

Swiatek on the importance of self-confidence and believing in yourself 

Now, Swiatek - who turns 23 in May - says no one should be afraid to follow their intuition, beliefs, get creative and try whatever they feel is the best for them. If a mistake happens in the process or something goes wrong, the four-time Grand Slam champion notes that doesn't necessarily mean that one should quit what they were doing. I

"Today with the LEGO brand I want to briefly write about self-confidence. Ever since I’ve started my journey with sports, I’ve heard other people’s expectations on how I should play, how I look, how I should behave, what I should do. The higher I was in the sport, the more (comments and opinions) there were. However, I never liked to close myself within certain limits, I wanted to base my beliefs and experiences, my intuition," Swiatek wrote on Instagram.

"To me, self-confidence means courage, among other things. Courage in trying new things and not giving up even after making a mistake, courage in being sensitive and expressing emotions. This is why the LEGO #DziewczynkiMogaWszystko (girls can do anything) campaign is close to me because it shows that in order for children to believe in themselves, we adults should give them the opportunity to explore, build their world, their personality and support them when they make mistakes.

"Use your imagination to look for the unknown together, attempt and solve problems. There are no rules in a game."

Swiatek made one mistake last year but she corrected it and it made her tougher

After Ashleigh Barty abruptly retired in 2022 March and many wondered who would be her successor, Swiatek stepped up and it didn't take her long before she proved to everyone that women's tennis would have another great champion. In 2022, Swiatek won two Grand Slams - eight titles in total - and she set a record for the longest winning streak in women's in the 21st century after winning 37 consecutive matches between February and July. 

But Swiatek's pretty astonishing and historic 2022 season came with a price as unrealistic expectations started getting placed on the Pole and the feeling was that fans expected the world No. 1 to pretty much win every match and tournament.

Ultimately, all of that got to Swiatek, who seemingly started believing that anything but a title wasn't a good result. Then, the Pole didn't have a great North American swing and lost the world No. 1 spot to Aryna Sabalenka after exiting the US Open in the round-of-16.  

But after taking some time to rest and recharge, Swiatek bounced back by winning Beijing and the WTA Finals and reclaiming the world No. 1 spot. 

“Sometimes I felt like it’s just kind of ridiculous because people got used to me winning," Swiatek said in late 2023.

"It’s not like it’s going to happen all the time. So I think this season was kind of more normal, I would say, like most of the seasons we play, for even the top players.

"I think the main thing that I want to avoid is forgetting that this was also a good season and I still won some great tournaments. I won a Grand Slam. For sure the expectations from the outside, it was the thing that really sometimes stopped me this season. I’m going to work on not letting it stop me this time."

Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek © Getty Images Sport - Cameron Spencer

Most importantly, Swiatek learned a big lesson last year and she is now having a much better and healthier approach to what comes with being the top-ranked player in the game. 

Iga Swiatek