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Coaching Tips

What New Year’s Says About Your Future

If you’ve ever coached, you know how it can consume you.

Not only must you teach skills, you must create game plans, build teamwork, assign roles, provide motivation, deal with personalities and give your players a mental game based on confidence and belief.

Coaching, as my friend Dr. Carl McGown says, is not rocket science. It’s more complex.

That’s why I loved reading an email from my coaching colleague about things to do in our next practice. He outlined our needs, how we should address them, and added a strategy going forward.

Nothing in his message, however, struck me as much as the time he sent it — 1:11 a.m. on New Year’s Day. When millions of other people were partying, my colleague was thinking of ways to improve our team.

It reminds me of a banjo player years ago in San Francisco. He gave lessons once a week, and was dismayed one evening when his student didn’t show up. This banjo player loved music so much he couldn’t understand why or how anyone could miss a lesson.

“But,” his friends told him, “it’s New Year’s Eve.”

That explanation meant little to Jerry Garcia, later to become the lead guitarist for the Grateful Dead.

That’s my kind of person, someone so wrapped up in their passion they don’t know what day it is. Someone like ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes, who was so focused on his work that he didn’t notice his city was being invaded.

“It is surely a great calamity for a human being to have no obsessions,” said American poet Robert Bly.

“Without obsession,” said film director John Waters, “life is nothing.”

The right obsession can bring you achievement beyond your dreams. It can help you beat the odds in your field. Said Hall of Fame basketball coach Pat Riley, “To have long term success as a coach or in any position of leadership, you have to be obsessed in some way.”

My New Year’s wish for you is to develop an interest so strong that you focus on it and share it, no matter what the hour or day, whether or not your town is being invaded.

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Thank you for visiting Total Game Plan. If your team, group or business needs a motivational speaker, please email coachtully @ totalgameplan.com. Here are some other resources for your success:

Think Better, Win More!” will give you a mental game to match your physical game.

To get better at anything, check out “The Improvement Factor: How Winners Turn Practice into Success.”

Do you coach females? Are you a female athlete, or the parent of one? Here’s “Was It Something I Said? A Guide to Coaching Female Athletes” by Vanessa Sullivan and Mike Tully

Need some motivation? Everyone needs it now and then. Open any page of “Thank God You’re Lazy! The Instant Cure for What’s Holding You Back” by Dr. Rob Gilbert and Mike Tully.

Are you a teacher, boss or sports coach? Here’s “Ten Things Great Coaches Know” by Mike Tully and Gary Pritchard.

Want to have your best basketball season ever? Here’s “Basketball: What Great Players Know that You Don’t Know,” by Mike Tully and Gio Grassi.


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