5 Reasons I won’t quit coaching
(despite the unlimited number of reasons I should)
1. I am a teacher and a student at heart. I love to learn, and after I learn- I love even more to break down that knowledge and pass it on. I love seeing the “lightbulb” come on and the eyes sparkle when someone gets something and then executes it successfully when they thought they couldn’t.
2. I needed a coach to guide me in more than just skills and I didn’t often have that. I was a lost teenager that needed someone to notice I was struggling to find my way. I know I could have reached a higher potential if I felt a coach believed in me and valued me for more than just goals and turnovers. I can only take that feeling of loss and turn it around for good by providing that service to someone else who needs it. I want to be a transformational coach, not just transactional. It’s not just about the game. I personally know how it feels when the coach treats you like a chess piece and not a person. I want my empathy to drive me to do better. I want my players to feel value no matter what their role is, no matter how they are playing on any particular day or if they win or lose.
3. I see kids quitting, struggling, miserable. I know I can provide an experience that they love and that helps them build confidence and character because that is so important to me. I know in my heart that my duty is to share that gift, not to throw it away because of politics, drama or other difficulties. That no matter what I face, this is important, life changing work that has nothing to do with the win-loss record we all celebrate.
4. I see programs struggling with culture, parents struggling to lead their child athletes with extremes of under-involvement or over-involvement. I see coaches and parents drawing a hard line and daring each other to cross over. I know there is a better way, I lived it and I learned it the hard way and I cannot stand by and watch when there is a way to be unified in our commonalities. I believe my experiences, struggles and frustrations were put in front of me to enable me to better understand program relationships, culture and communication.
5. When I stop teaching, I stop growing and learning. It’s a cycle that builds upon itself. I teach the players, the staff, the parents, and they teach me. I find my weaknesses and I improve on them. I find successes and I share them. I feel frustration and I learn patience and perspective. I need coaching the way coaching needs me.
What are your 5 top reasons that drive you on? A coach on average spends more time with someone’s kid then their parents do over the course of a season. You have an incredible amount of influence, for better or for worse. What makes you smile when you climb into the car at the end of a practice or a game or a meeting? What is your purpose in this place where you have planted yourself? While you strive to have your players to build and leave their own legacy after they move on, what legacy are you building as a coach? Where are you holding on too tight that you can let go, where do you need to get a grip before it tears the team apart? Do you know why you stay, are you ready to lean on those reasons when things get hard, when they get impossible, when they break your heart?
To all my coaching peers and friends, thank you for holding on through thick and thin, and for knowing in your core the reasons you won’t quit, no matter what.