Short term planning

I’m all for planning. At times I feel a slave to my calendar. A slave because I’m constantly looking to see what’s coming up. Today, this week, next month…I think it makes me feel valuable to see that I’m busy.

I’m working on it.

I also preach planning. But, I’m not a big fan of creating a long-term vision for everything. Some big things need a long-term plan, and having far away goals and interim goals and keeping track of your progress is a good thing.

But, it seems that too often we don’t simply get to work.

Start doing something and see how it goes, what it leads you to next. If you plan to start, when do actually start?

Go. Then see what you learn and go some more.

Coaching is a Partnership of Caring

When I was building a short repeat-after-me mantra for my own use, something to remind myself of the who/why/what of myself as a coach, one of the phrases I used was this:

Coaching Is A Partnership of Caring

Coaching is a sacred role. Coaches work to help others realize their possibility and help a group become something greater than the individuals within. It’s not a simple role.

Partnership is a greatly important word. We are partners with others in many ways. We form partnerships with one or multiple people in an effort to be great, to feel support and to create.

The final big word is the key. Caring, to me, means putting someone else, or some external goal or idea “first”. By advantaging the outside goal or the other person we truly help to make them better. We care, and that puts us on their side, even when the caring feels hard or challenging.

I’m proud to be in a partnership with a lot of people who call me Coach. It’s where the magic of this profession lies.

Build better partnerships. Care more or more intentionally, or be sure your partners, your players, know where you stand on this.

Distraction

This scenario happens to me many times a day: I’m talking to someone on the phone and then a buzz comes in my ear, or theirs, and the primary conversation takes a hiccup.

“Um, yeah,” as one of us takes a quick glance at the phone to see what the notification needs from us.

It only takes a second. The conversation doesn’t stop…and yet we need to do a micro reboot. It does take away.

And, It happens a lot.

There’s lots of talk about the truth about one’s ability to multi-task. Can you actually do more than one thing at a time? Sure. Can you do them both well? Maybe. Or, probably not.

It’s not the thing that distracts you that matters, it’s the fact you’ve become distracted, no matter how short the time period or small the event. Check the science.

And, don’t even get me started with smartwatches.

Best Practices

So, there is probably a really good way to do the thing that you need to do. Others have done it before, I’m sure, and you can get a lot from their experience.

You can research the best way to do this thing, you can rely on your own experience or you can ask a friend.

In my experience, I find that relying on my own best practices, for that thing or other similar things I’ve done before, is the best way to get a satisfactory result.

If I think about the way I like to do things, the way the best things have worked out for me, I find that there aren’t really an unlimited way to do things…

So, do something, see how it feels when it’s done, redo it, and go from there.

The best way to practice, is to practice.

It wasn’t easy

Remember that time…? It seems like it was easy, right? You showed up and got it right.

Probably not.

Your successes are likely more complex than you remember them.

You worked hard, you considered options that ended up on the cutting room floor that you don’t even recall now.

Sometimes we think our former selves had it easier, or the competition wasn’t as tough as it actually was, or we were just better then…

Give yourself credit and get to work on the complex concern in front of you now.

The Days

I like to provide assessments to projects. Set goals, make a plan to achieve them, get to work and then see how you do.

Yet I wonder if we need to add a quality definition to everything? Is a rating always important?

Do we need to know how our day was in relation to yesterday or a week from now, every day?

Maybe we can let ourselves off the hook one day at a time.

These are not the good old days.

Find Your People Without Looking Too Hard

Look for the happy people.

Happy people are more productive and better to be around.  I don’t have the research at hand, but this is true in my experience.

Happy does not mean, giddy, laugh-at-every-little-thing people, to me it means people who are satisfied, who somehow communicate that they know that everything is not ok, and they are ok with that.

Happy means satisfied, in a good way.  Dissatisfied is the realm of a constant, “I wish things were different,” approach to the world.

One can work to be “better” and not be dissatisfied, for sure, but meanwhile I aim to be comfortable with the process.  It’s a happier way to be.

Presenting, The Present

Everything happens before it happens.

Your perception of “the present” likely is actually around things that have already happened or are about to happen.

Is it possible to Live In The Moment? Sure, but the moment includes time that’s gone by and things to come.

Let’s not get caught up in whether we’re doing a good job of being in the present or not and enjoy whatever the experience is, with the people we’re with.

Teams only go around once.

Coaches’ Tools

You probably suggest lots of great mental tools to your players. Most sport coaches understand the value of a strong mental game for their athletes.

Visualization and other forms of imagery, controlled and intentional breathing or being in the moment, understanding self-talk and other techniques are in most coach’s toolboxes for their players.

How about you? Do you teach these things? Do you use those same tools for yourself?

Are you leaving something on the table in your own preparation?

Why not use the same tools you ask players to use?