I Need You

Work harder. Dig deeper. Find it within you!

So many messages around us say that we can just do it; it’s not that hard if you make a plan and try… you’ll find it within yourself.

What if it’s not true that working harder will make it happen? If the digging and the searching inward doesn’t yield the answers, and perhaps never will?

What if we need each other, if the answers lie in reaching out as much as looking inward?

Connection helps.

Coaching Practice = Practice Coaching

Over and over I remind myself and other coaches that being is greater than doing. Who we are at the foundation, our core, the personal drivers, are crucial to being successful day to day. What we do, the tactics, of course also really matter, but without a sense of why we care about the things we care about, the doing can be simple noise.

Lately, however, I remind myself that the doing must be done. No matter. We don’t coach others with words alone. If our words, the actual coaching, is to be successful they must inspire others to practice. Testing the movements, skills and actions of a sport is how performers learn what drives improvement, and winning.

Without the testing, the doing, the practice we can’t keep the experiment moving and gain ground on the skills.

Coaches need to drill like this. Create opportunities to practice coaching a situation or a skill, role play with others, to do the thing. Find a way to put this into your system.

Practice coaching practice. Practice coaching a meeting, a recruiting call, a drill. Make self-evaluation more than a yearly or quarterly thing.

Be. And Do.

Camp

Cat’s in the Cradle, Puff the Magic Dragon, One Tin Soldier…a bunch of sad songs that make me smile every time.

A couple of dozen rustic cabins, a pond, other unheated buildings with picnic tables and smelly kids. Canoeing, archery, arts and crafts…and the singing. The singing was the staple of our world. And I was an enthusiastic but terrible singer. It didn’t matter.

This was Camp. Yes, with a capital C. Camp Downer (believe it – what a name!). A few adults and a bunch of teenagers. Campfires. Swimming. Singing.

Culture is a word and concept that everyone’s talking about–in sports, teams and business. Entrepreneurs, influencers, coaches and leaders of all sorts talk about the importance of building culture.

At camp, however, we didn’t build culture, we just lived it. Morning reveille, the bells, the bunk beds, the cold water showers and late nights of counselors drinking in the woods. All of it – the shared experience – was glue that stuck groups together. Forever.

Pick your year. The summer of ____ can be recalled in detail by many of the teenagers who shared just eight weeks together.

Camp Downer was anything but a Downer and remains at the front of my mind forty years later because we had “culture”. We shared the the fears, the fires, the bed wetters, the fake weddings…and the songs. The rhythm of our behaviors, the “we know what’s supposed to happen next,” the bugle in the morning and Taps at night…day is done. Now you know.

We were a team. And because we were a team then, we remain a team now, through grainy pictures and comments on Facebook. The shared experience remains etched. That, and the songs.

We’ll get together then…

Leading With A Vision Just Got Tougher

Leadership done best is an ability to present a picture of a future that’s successful, exciting and compelling. When people not only trust a leader as a person but are inspired by their vision, things are more fun and the process moves along.

When “the future” seems so precarious this becomes even more challenging.

Many “leaders” can’t find their way to paint a picture of a future that’s compelling, or are even able to consider what might happen. This is when the real leaders become fewer in number and even more important.

Finding our way toward leading ourselves in this way is, as always, a great first step.

When you know what your now looks like and why, it’s way easier to know what to do.

Step
By
Step

Open Source Coaching

Share. Try things, make plans, try things, make notes, try things, write lists…and share.

None of us own coaching technique.  Even the most novel strategies come from seeds of something that’s comes before.

It’s so exciting to share coaching ideas, sketches, failures and successes through stories and game plans executed or trashed.  The idea of “talking coaching” is the way to the future for all of us.

Let’s not just hash through the hows and even the whys of our experiences, but share the this-is-how-i-got-there details.  You have lots to give and there are lots of coaches out there who can learn from your experiences.

Everything Is ‘All In Your Head’

I got stuck in traffic and that made me mad.

That player isn’t working hard and that’s why I’m being a jerk to everyone else.

The sunrise made me happy.

Nope. It’s your brain at work, doing so many magical things on the inside.

There’s no “making” you feel anything.

Simply by recognizing that how you feel is not the other guys’ issue and owning the ability to not feel that way (no one is saying it’s easy) is powerful.

Working to recognize when you feel badly, or guilty, or stressed or any other sort of upset and embracing those feelings rather than pushing them away may help bring them down a couple of notches.

Presents At Thanksgiving

Lots of people are talking about presence and being fully in the place where you actually are.

I once heard Ellen Degeneres comment something like, “If your body is doing something, your brain ought to be in on it.”

I call it being where your feet are.

And, it’s becoming harder to do, to truly focus on one thing at a time, so the old standby intentionality comes into play as the main event.

Intent to be attentive can be a struggle for me, but I’m thankful for the continued chances to improve at it.

Lifesaver

The idea that something “saved your life”…

Is living simply not being dead? Really, I’m asking.

If someone or something–a drug or a good samaritan–came upon you just in the nick of time to keep you from death, you’re life has been saved.

But what then?

“Living well” means a variety of things to various people and societies. I think we all should think more intentionally about what good living is for us and set out to achieve those things.

Just showing up each day is too easy and holds opportunity costs. We, I, can do more.

The Gap

What’s possible? If you got your act together, what could it look like?

You have enough time, energy, excitement and people on your side… what could you get done.

What’s really in the way?

Try what you tell your kids…act as if…

Act like you have nothing to lose (really, what do you have to lose?), even nothing to gain aside from whatever it is that’s around the corner on your way to possible.

That’s the only act you need to have together.

RSG!

Baby Steps

Adults trying new things are a lot like babies learning to walk…stand up, fall down, reach for something to lean on, fall down again…sometimes your legs just wave in the air because you can’t even roll over to try again.

But, you do. They do. Roll over, stand up, fall down…

Some can essentially do a push up before they stand up. How cool is that?

Eventually, most babies get moving, on their feet.

What’s your method?