Courage

Being more of a spectator now as opposed to an active coach has given me new perspective (and renewed appreciation) on our job as coaches.

It takes courage to participate in athletics, whether as a coach or participant.

You are putting yourself “out there” for everyone… spectators, family, friends and foes alike to watch, judge, critique, etc. It is easy to sit in the stands and grouse about how your team is lacking, or how your team’s players are “not very good”. It is much harder to compete, take the risk, do the work, and be a Doer!

It takes courage to be a coach, to put your product out for evaluation every Friday night or Tuesday or Sunday afternoon. I chuckle inside when other teachers (non coaches) worry/ complain/ get angry about being “evaluated” once or twice a year. Coaches not only get evaluated during those two “official” teaching evaluations, but also every Friday night when they put their team on the field. The evaluation is done not only by school officials, but parents, community members, students, and the media.

football-pressure-coachIn addition to these “evaluations” many of us also get evaluated almost daily by our Activities Director and/ or administration… watching practice, checking grades, monitoring your teams behavior while they are at school. And it is ALL GOOD! It comes with the job; it is what we signed up for, and generally keeps us on our toes.

So why do we do it? Why do we decide to compete… to coach?

This is a excerpt from Seth Godin’s blog that I re-read yesterday about being a spectator as opposed to a Doer:

“The spectators foolishly assert that if everyone was a doer, a leader and a maker of ruckuses, then there’d be no one left in the audience. As if those that do require an audience.”

“The alternative to being a spectator involves failure and apparent risk. It means that you will encounter people who accuse you of hubris and flying too high, people who are eager to point out the loose thread on your jacket or the flaw in your reasoning. The spectators in the stands are happy to boo, happy to walk out when the team is struggling in the third period, happy to switch if the bread or the circuses cease to delight.”

“Why on earth, they ask, would they want to be anything but a spectator?”

“And yet, those that have foolishly picked themselves, stood up, stood out and made a difference, can’t help but ask, “and why would I ever want to be a spectator again?””

You (and your players) have picked yourselves and stood up…

You (and your players) are Doers…. You are Competitors!

You have chosen a more difficult path…. a more difficult, but much more rewarding path.

You make a difference.

Ours is an awesome job, with awesome responsibilities!

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Remember – You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

The “Thrill”

When I tell people my profession, coach and teacher, a common reply is something along the lines of, “Man that must be fun… and to have your summers off, too”.

And it must be fairly easy, right?… as aptly stated by Coach Greg Schiano, There are two things every man in America thinks he can do: work a grill and coach football.”

Well, in the 30+ years of doing this job, I have never had a summer “off”… in fact summertime is one of the busiest of the year.

And our job is not for everyone.

Our job is not easy.

Our job is fun, but most people have the misconception that it is all thrilling “Friday Night Lights”, and Gatorade showers.

gatorade

As we all know, our job is much more than that… it is wearing ten different hats during the course of a day… it is grueling… it is a grind… but a grind that we love and a job that is very rewarding.

Games are thrilling… but the job is more than games… it is work… hard work… difficult work… important workwork that matters.

Business and marketing expert, Seth Godin, discussed this in a post last week…

The thrill is gone

Of course it is.

The definition of a thrill is temporary excitement, usually experienced for the first time.

The definition of the thrill is that it’s going to be gone soon.

You might have been thrilled to go to your first job the first day. Or thrilled to see the first comment on your blog or thrilled the first time one of your books was translated into another language.

But after that? How can repeating it be thrilling?

The work of a professional isn’t to recreate thrills. It’s to show up and do the work. To continue the journey you set out on a while ago. To make the change you seek to make in the universe.

Thrilling is fine. Mattering is more important.

Ours is an awesome job, with awesome responsibilities.

Our job matters.

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Remember – You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

Resilience

I am continually fascinated by how many concepts from other disciplines relate to coaching, teaching, athletics… and well…. life.

Bestselling business/ marketing author, Seth Godin (I read his blog daily, and have read all of his books) wrote about resilience last week…

Resilience

Given how important it is, it’s surprising we don’t hire for it.

How easily do you bounce back from a disappointment? What is your reaction to change? As an investor, or a board member or an employee, are you seeking stability or impact?

Resilience is a skill, one that’s probably more valuable than most.

As a teacher and a coach… itresilience… is equally important.   There are always hurdles… there will be setbacks… we all have challenges…

snow dayIt is a trait I personally want to possess…

It is a trait I want my assistant coaches to possess…

It is a trait I want my players to possess…

My question then becomes, as teachers and coaches how do we teach resiliency to our student-athletes? How can we coach our players to be more resilient?

Now, this is not a rhetorical question.

I would like your input… this is a call to action.  I would like to hear your ideas on this… what do you do in your program to foster this trait… lets collaborate.  Leave a comment on this blog… or shoot me a quick email.

I will share the results.

Here is another opportunity to collaborate…

As I mentioned last week, Lee Weber (CSIC and head football coach at Wamego High School, KS) is asking coaches to send in their favorite drills so he can compile a “best of” Twitter #fbchat drill guide. Please consider sending one of your favorite drills to Coach Weber (gcwarrior@gmail.com) for inclusion in his drill guide.

“A rising tide lifts all ships”

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Remember – You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

Overcoming Fear

What makes you anxious?

What are you afraid of?

What are your fears… your irrational fears?

We all have them.

Blame it on your “Lizard Brain”… the part of your brain called the amygdala.

The amygdala’s job is to provide us with our most primal instincts: fear, hunger and arousal. It drives us to fend off predators and protect ourselves from harm.

Useful if you are getting attacked by a bear…. not so useful if it is making you irrationally anxious about…

fear

  • Speaking in front of a group of people…
  • Learning how to use new technology…
  • Writing an article for a coaching journal…
  • Expanding your comfort zone.

So how do you overcome these irrational fears… how do you tame your lizard brain?

The advice by marketing expert Seth Godin

“To overcome an irrational fear… replace it with a habit.

If you’re afraid to write, write a little, every day. Start with an anonymous blog, start with a sentence. Every day, drip, drip, drip, a habit.

If you’re afraid to speak up, speak up a little, every day. Not to the board of directors, but to someone. A little bit, every day.

Habits are more powerful than fears.

Recognize and acknowledge your fears… then begin crushing them incrementally by developing powerful habits.

You can do this…. A little bit every day.

You would expect nothing less from your players or students… right?

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You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you… Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

Doing Your Best?

Well, I did my best

I am proud of our kids… they did their best

I have used these lines (or something similar) before.

Did I reallydo my best”… did my kids reallydo their best”?

Bestselling author and marketing expert, Seth Godin, has this take on “doing your best”

“Doing your best…

It’s a pretty easy way to let ourselves (or someone else) off the hook. “Hey, you did your best.”

But it fails to explain the way we’re able to somehow summon more energy and more insight when there’s a lot on the line.

By defining “our best” as the thing we did when we merely put a lot of effort into a task, I fear we’re letting ourselves off the hook.

In fact, it might not require a lot of effort, but a ridiculous amount of effort, an unreasonable amount of preparation, a silly amount of focus… and even then, there might be a little bit left to give.”

I think one of the biggest challenges in coaching (and teaching) is to get the kids (and parents) to see that while they may be putting effort into this task (playing football, soccer, basketball, etc), and many are doing a good job, most are not even approaching “doing their best“.

It is a tough job getting them to believe that even though they have worked hard, they can give more… that to “do their best” they need to give …

“…a ridiculous amount of effort, an unreasonable amount of preparation, a silly amount of focus… and even then, there might be a little bit left to give.”

When have you really “done your best”?

I can count on one hand the times that I did my best… produced my best work.

I think this is was of those times…

Defensive Game Planning… All Posts, Forms, and Video.

This series details the defensive game planning process we developed at the University of Central Missouri… the development spanned several years, and the compilation and documentation took one summer of work.

You all do amazing work…. really good work… at times, I am sure, “your best”…

“…and even then, there might be a little bit left to give”

You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It! 

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

Two Lists

Seth Godin is a writer that I read and learn from daily. Although Godin is not a coach in the strict sense of the word, his writing often resonates with me. He recently added this post:

Make Two Lists… One list highlights the lucky breaks, the advantages, the good feedback, your trusted network. It talks about the accident of being born in the right time and the right place, your health, your freedom. It features your education, your connection to the marketplace and just about every nice thing someone has said about you in the last week or month.

The other list is the flipside. It contains the obstacles you’ve got to deal with regularly, the defects in your family situation, the criticisms your work has received lately. It is a list of people who have better luck than you and moments you’ve been shafted and misunderstood.

The thing is, at every juncture, during every crisis, in every moment of doubt, you have a choice. You will pull out one (virtual) list or the other. You’ll read and reread it, and rely on it to decide how to proceed.

Up to you.

As coaches, we are in the spotlight (or crosshairs) daily. Our teaching skills are evaluated each Friday night… we put our product out there for everyone to see. We are vulnerable.

listlistI know I can come up with numerous items for each of these two virtual lists… I think we all probably can. It is sometimes easy to fall into the trap of wallowing in the sludge of the negative list…. I have done it.

But….

It is our choice…

It is my choice…

As I remind some of my students daily…. “Let’s make better choices”

I am going to take my own advice…

I am a very lucky guy.

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You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

 

 

Pre-Season PD

It has arrived… the last two days… the bane of all coaches, especially fall coaches.

Professional Development In-Service on Pre-Season Practice days.

Now, I never wanted to shirk any of my teaching duties or responsibilities, but I can remember stressing, mentally going through “to-do” lists, and thinking to myself virtually every minute of each session …

“Man, I have soooo much to do… I should have gotten up earlier (like 3:00 AM instead of 5:00 AM)”

Now, that being said, each year I go back to something I learned over 30 years ago in my first year of teaching and coaching.   I was at Blue Springs High School, and was an assistant in Fred Merrell’s football program. Coach Merrell would always say, before each clinic we attended that,

”If I can get just one thing out of a clinic, then I consider it worthwhile.  I don’t think I have ever been to a clinic that wasn’t worthwhile”

So with Coach Merrell whispering in my ear, I approached this year, as always, trying to find that one kernel to take away that will improve my teaching and coaching.

This year it slapped me in the face… and a Seth Godin post that I read early in the morning was prescient:

Analytics without action

Don’t measure anything unless the data helps you make a better decision or change your actions.

If you’re not prepared to change your diet or your workouts, don’t get on the scale.

Most of the last two days has revolved around data… from Performance Based Teacher Evaluations, to MSIP, MAP test, STAR test, and all educational related data in between.

student data

The big takeaway… finding efficient and productive ways to use all the data we have access to…. and how can we best use the data to help improve the performance of our students?

How does this relate to coaching?

  • What data do you collect in your football program?
  • What are you measuring?
  • What are you testing?
  • How are you using that data?
  • Do your players understand how and why you are using the data?
  • What data are you collecting when you scout an opponent… or yourself?
  • How are you using that data?
  • Are you using it?

If you’re not prepared to change your diet or workouts, don’t get on the scale!

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You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

This is easy…

No, it really isn’t.

Whenever athletes of mine whine, grouse or complain that a particular workout, technique or drill is hard, my comment is always,

“Why would we ever want you to do something that was easy?”

Business author Seth Godin echoed this in his recent post:

Fast, easy, guaranteed

…pick none.

That’s the work that’s worth doing.

And by the way, the athlete was “whining” was really just wanting affirmation that yes, this is hard, and yes, I did it and, aren’t I pretty awesome for doing this thing that is so hard?

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Hard-work

You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

 

Paying it Forward

I was recently asked a question that has been put to me several times over the last year….

“Why are you doing this … just giving away your stuff on game planning (or strength training… or strength and conditioning)? You know people pay for stuff that isn’t as good as this.”

Here are some reasons.

Pretty much everything that I know, or do, or have done as a coach, was given to me by other members of this fraternity we call coaching. I have had some great mentors and colleagues:

Fred Merrell, Buddy Young, Bill Warner, Terry Noland, Mike Foster, Roy Wittke, Mark Thomas, Mark Hulet, Scott Baumgartner… to name just a few.

And, I have learned from some great ones via clinics or spring break visits:

Billy Miller, John Smith, Boyd Epley, Dave Wannstedt.

None of these coaches ever asked for, or expected payment for sharing their information and knowledge.

I always thought that I did a good job of mentoring young coaches… many people who I had a chance to work with over the years went on to become successful coaches, teacher and administrators.

I thought that until some recent reflection regarding my last high school stop… Truman High School, in Independence, Missouri. In retrospect, I had some young coaches on my staff there that I did not do a good job of mentoring or teaching… I got too caught up with trying to find a way to cobble a few wins together.

I was not following my own credo… You Can Do More…. I actually was doing less.

It was not fair to those coaches, and the decision to write this blog was, in part, a result of that reflection… a penance… an attempt to make it up… to them and any other young coach that might stumble on this blog and take away a kernel or two that might help them along their way.

And, the tipping point was when I read Seth Godin’s book, The Icarus Deception… How high will you fly?… which gave me the push… the impetus to start.

So, thanks to all of the people that have helped me along the way… and thanks to all who read and respond to this blog.

A couple of requests:

  1. Pay it (your knowledge and expertise) forward
  2. Share this blog (YouCanDoMore.net) with anyone who might find it useful or entertaining.

pay it forwardYou Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd – youcandomore1@yahoo.com

 

 

Failure is Your Only Option

Thanks to twitter friend Susan Israel for sharing this excellent motivational video that references “failure”…

You Can Do More!

patchWe are all familiar with the famous Gene Kranz (NASA flight director) quote from the movie Apollo 13, Failure is not an option.  I suppose when you are dealing with the prospects of getting three astronauts safely home from a crippled space capsule that is the case.  When thinking about your career, career choices, and your daily work, failure is not only ANoption, but is your ONLYoption if you want continued growth.

If you never fail, you probably are not adequately stretching your boundaries.  I am in the middle of a very good book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, by Carol Dweck, that deals with this concept. I will go deeper into the book in upcoming posts but there is one message that resonated with me; if you fear failure, you continually look to put yourself into situations that success is guaranteed…

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