One of the greatest qualities we can have as a coach is Patience. Patience is not the same as indifference, it conveys the idea of someone who is tremendously strong and able to withstand all assaults and rise above it (preparation, players, practice, parents, people, etc) with class.
When you choose to be patient, you respond in a positive way to a negative situation (look at the way we execute our plays!!!). You are slow to anger. You choose to have a long fuse instead of a quick temper. Rather than being restless and demanding, patience allows you to settle down and brings an internal calm during an external storm.
No one like to be around an impatient person. It causes you to overreact in angry, foolish and regrettable ways. I had a coach once tell me that he wanted to coach with less regrets. I asked him what he meant by that and he said, “I want to get in my car after practice and drive home and not regret some things I say to my players in my frustration.”
But Patience stops problems in their tracks. It is more than biting your lip, more than putting your hand over your mouth, Patience is a deep breath. It clears the air. It stops foolishness from whipping its scorpion tail all over the court of field. It is a choice to control your emotions rather than allowing your emotions to control you.
Patience allows your players to be human and yes they make mistakes. It understands that everyone fails. And when that happens, that is one of our greatest moments to “Coach”, teach, encourage, correct, restore.
Few of us do Patience well and none of us do it naturally. I have found when I am impatient, I am thinking of myself (driving, in a line at the bank, the simple duties of life!!!). But when I am patient, I am thinking of others.
“On the journey to success we will face frustration and fatigue, setbacks and serious obstacles; but a leader must remain undaunted, possessing patience.”
John Wooden, Wooden on Leadership, p. 55
BE a PATIENT Teacher of the Game again!!! Have a great week. New website is up at www.coachcharacter.com