Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Do you "know it all"?

The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.
- Socrates

I saw this quote this morning and found it to be quite true. There is so much information out there that we just don't know. What does this mean for us? What are the consequences?

Overall it means that we need to challenge ourselves constantly to learn something new everyday. As a growing global community this has tremendous impact on how we view others and the interactions we have.

From a coaching perspective, it means that we too need to be searching for new information all the time. There are so many leadership techniques and motivational tools that have been developed and can be inspiration for our own views or implemented into our own philosophies. Coaches are constantly toying with new ideas, strategies, and tactical schemes that could be beneficial to our own programs.

As coaches, this also impacts our players. As soon as they think they've got it all figured out, that is when we see a decline in performance. This could be in the classroom or on the court. It is often the reason for the "sophomore slump".

This past year, I tried to combat the "slump" by engaging my post players in activities that would keep them thinking and exploring on their own. I had them come up with their own Directive Affirmations (an earlier post talks about this). This goal setting technique demonstrated that even a very good player still has room for improvement. I also provided my post players daily quotes in which they had to relate the quote to their affirmation and why it was important.

I would encourage coaches to read something every day that will assist them in bettering their program. This was something that George Raveling believed in strongly. Read an article from a newspaper or magazine, a book on leadership, or an inspirational story. I would encourage coaches to have their players participate as well. Bob Knight would have his team read books that he distributed to his team to keep them activated.

These are not new ideas, but little things that we tend to forget. The more we can understand that we don't know it all, the better we can become down the road.

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