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Beating the Odds

Choosing Hope

Happy Easter!

It’s about more than colored hard-boiled eggs, pineapple upside-down cake, and Easter baskets.

It’s about rebirth, renewal and hope. No matter what your religious faith, you can relate to these themes.

I recently heard from an old friend who has been on the difficult road of alcoholism. He now attends Alcoholic Anonymous meetings every day. It’s a struggle, but he has a vision of himself as being sober. He has hope for a better future.

Someone once told me that the coach’s job, day in and day out, is to provide hope. Whether in huddles, in practice, in pre-game meetings, or during timeouts, people need hope.

“Once you choose hope, anything’s possible,” said actor Christopher Reeve.

Practice itself is a form of hope. It’s an expression that something better is possible. When planning practices, good coaches create activities that let the athletes see their improvement.

“Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire,” said Martha Graham.

The athlete who engages in deliberate practice is holding stubbornly — and wisely — to the thought that skill will come.

So every day can be like Easter. Every day can be one in which you renew and create yourself.

Einstein said: “There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.”

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Mike Tully speaks to sports, business and educational groups. He also works with coaches, athletes and teams to make their practice time more productive and efficient. He and Gary Pritchard are co-authors of “Ten Things Great Coaches Know.” To see Coach Tully and Coach Pritchard discuss “Seven Ways to Prepare for Adversity,” click here.


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