Determined versus desperate

There tends to be a calm calculation behind determined.  Roll the sleeves up and bear down on the problem.

A focused energy into a strategic plan where head and heart work together towards achieving the objective.

Desperate on the other hand is back against the wall stuff- emotional, fight or flight in a crisis. There can be power in desperation.

Sometimes situations require a determined response, sometimes desperate.  

But desperate is not sustainable over the longer-term.  Go to that well too often and you'll find it dry.

Blame removes that ability to do anything about it!

That's the thing about taking responsibility.

It means you can still be part of the solution.

Blaming others, making excuses, finding fault removes this ability alongside any learning that could have taken place.

Taking 100% responsibility for the situation, regardless of it being in or out of our control, keeps us in on the action.  It keeps us in the fight, in the arena.

And of course in the arena is the subject of this fabulous quote from Theodore Roosevelt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Goal setting for 2021 and beyond

Perhaps this year of any year has told and taught us a heck of a lot.

Life will continue to do its thing...regardless of the goals we set, and the 'control-ables' we think we can control.

Perhaps it might just be more 'healthy' right now to not project ourselves into the future.   Not to set that S.M.A.R.T goal.

Because so often by doing that, we miss out on the 'present'.

And while the present is not as we wish it would be, it is still filled with opportunity and fascination.  Just not in the direction we might have been looking.

(Reference/ideas from Derren Brown's 'Happy')

Blind spots

Blind spots.

We all have them.  What is it we don't see?

As Schopenhauer wrote: 'Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.'

As coaches, we need to bear in mind what lens we see things through.  The lens of a 'technician', or a 'tactician', or do we see more of the 'performer', the mental and the physical.  When assessing a player/athlete we select, delete and generalise.  We can't take it all in at once so we tend to see what we want to see, what we are conditioned to see, and so often can miss the rest.

Know your blind spots...because it's there that we might miss something vital.

Bring another coach alongside you - ask them, 'what do you see here?'.  This is one of the reasons I'm so grateful to be involved in a team environment with a fantastic group of coaches who are all prepared to ask the question.

It's not a sign of a lack of knowledge or expertise.  Simply that we recognise our human condition and two sets of eyes are better than one!

The stories we tell ourselves

When you fail or feel like a failure.

When we think we're 'no good' in a particular situation, at a particularly subject or task.

Sometimes we're even told we're no good.

These then become the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves. 

And we start to believe them and in turn develop a 'learned helplessness'.

We become skilled at living out these stories, acting out the 'helpless role' when we are faced with that situation again.

Until we give ourselves permission to change our story.

To act differently.

To act out of character.

(from Derren Brown's 'Happy')

You can't 'magic' a performance out of nowhere

Ok, we might get away with one now and again.

A performance out of the blue, when stars align and fortune is on your side.

When the work hasn't yet been done.

But it will serve you well if you treat this as a truth:

You can't magic a performance out of nowhere.

The work has to get done.

And this WILL take time.  

It means delaying gratification.

But of course we live in an instant world now, so where time investment was once seen as a precursor to success, now it appears just a curse.

Positive avoidance

Positive avoidance basically suggests avoiding situations, places, events that could cause unnecessary worry, anxiety, or just be plain harmful.

It's smart for example for a recovering alcoholic to avoid the pub.

If there is positive avoidance I guess there must also be negative avoidance.  Avoiding situations that may cause a level of discomfort but by entering into them there is the potential to grow, to become more resilient, to ultimately flourish.

And sometimes it's just plain obvious. 

If you want to be a mountaineer, at some point you gotta start climbing mountains.