Life's latest pressure on the volleyball court

posted by Jeff | Monday, January 21, 2002, 11:43 PM | comments: 0

I've got issues.

Being without a job for a long period of time makes you question your self-worth. I coach a junior-olympic volleyball team, 17 open. I have this incredibly talented group this year, the most talented I've ever had. I have this self-imposed pressure to make them the best, and that's made more difficult when you question your own worth.

I had an instant message chat with one of my kids this evening. She reassured me that the team really likes me, and that many think I'm the best coach they've ever had. As flattering as that is, I'm not so much worried about whether or not they like me, I'm just consumed with teaching them the right things so that they're able to succeed.

A friend of mine once told me that self-doubt and constant self-evaluation are trademarks of the successful. I think he was right, because certainly anyone who thinks they're all that, isn't. The problem with that theory though is that you can take it too far. That's no fun at all. You fall into this endless loop in your head that can't be broken until you have some kind of results or conclusion you can see.

My conclusion on my ability to be a coach is somewhat far off. I won't know what I've accomplished until I get these kids in front of another team. In the mean time I have to make up my mind that the first priority is getting these ten young women to trust each other, trust me and above all, trust themselves. No small task when you're talking about 17-year old girls.

Coaching is teaching. When we stop and look at the way kids are today, we can only look back at ourselves as the cause. They are what we make them, plain and simple. They start out with a clean slate, just like we did. We can encourage them to be outstanding, extraordiary people if we put our minds to it. These kids are the greatest measure of our success.

No pressure, right?


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