Where do I fit in the world?

A fascinating blog post. Where do we fit in the world? How special is each individual? What is our purpose?

https://medium.com/personal-growth/the-purpose-of-life-is-to-be-a-nobody-72ceeb078373

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Humble vs Narcissitic Leaders

Very interesting post from the Harvard Business Review

https://hbr.org/2017/04/if-humble-people-make-the-best-leaders-why-do-we-fall-for-charismatic-narcissists

Default

Humans are creatures of habit who are influenced by their environments. We are biologically wired for survival.

Human nature is to find the smoothest means of success within our present environment. We will always look to find the “path of least resistance” towards our goal. The easiest route to success is not always the one that is in our best interest.

Is it easier to work out at lunchtime or wake up 30 minutes earlier and do it in the morning? Is it easier to pick up a pizza or cook a well-rounded meal?

The first step to growth and self-improvement is understanding that your default is the path of least resistance and choosing to make the decision that you know is in your best interest. In the words of the Cadet Prayer – “Make us to choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong, and never be content with a half truth when a whole can be won.”

Why I Coach: Relationships

There are many reasons why I coach. Probably too many to get into all of them. This morning, I had reason to pause and consider one of them while responding to an email from someone I’ve known for over 10 years – and only because of the sport of hockey.

After my freshman year of college I seized an opportunity to work at a hockey camp in Nisswa, Minnesota – Minnesota Hockey Camps. Since that summer, I’ve spent 9 summers in the Brainerd Lakes Area as either a counselor or a coach, coaching, mentoring and working with young people from all areas of the country. Anyone who’s ever spent time at MHC will tell you it’s a very special place filled with special people.

One of the people that I met there is now playing college hockey on the East Coast. We got to know each other through MHC, first working as counselor & camper, then as co-workers at the camp as we aged. When it came time to look at colleges, she asked me for some schools to look at, as she was considering going somewhere out east. I was someone from outside of the normal circles and someone who had experience in other parts of the country. I value the experience of moving away from home and meeting new people, as it was a huge part of my growth and development as a young man and something that I think has immense benefits.

Yesterday, I received an email from her. Last week I ran into her men’s coaches and asked about her and how she was doing. It was so cool to hear how happy she was, how much she was enjoying her experience and she was thankful for my help in finding a college. She has had a good career with a growing program and helped them find new levels of success. To read that email and know that I had an impact on her life is a very special feeling and one you don’t get after a game.

As a coach, you impact many people’s lives on a daily basis but you don’t always truly know the impact of your words and actions. The ability to motivate, inspire and mentor young people is an opportunity and responsibility that coaches have every day and one that is often taken far too lightly. Meetings may only last for 15 minutes, practices for an hour and games for two, but these relationships that we build can last a lifetime.

The impact of that email that I read this morning cannot be understated – it hit me at a time when I needed it most (as these things usually do) and helped to remind me of one of my core values as a coach. Relationships. Building, maintaining and cultivating relationships is at the very core of who I am and what I do. Why do I coach? Because of the email that I see

Why do I coach? Because of the email that I receive from an old friend thanking me for my influence in her life.

Why I Love Cooking

When you cook, you can’t really do anything else.

There is no multi-tasking, no multiple internet windows, no phone calls, no emails. Just you and the food.

Cooking requires concentration, focus and single-mindedness. Otherwise you might use a tablespoon instead of a teaspoon. You might overcook the onions. You could skip a step.

I love cooking because I get fully into what I’m doing and forget everything else. It’s hard to say that cooking is stress free, as getting everything to be ready at the exact same time takes preparation, foresight and experience. When I cook, I reduce my overall stress level as everything else goes out the window.

I don’t cook nearly as much as I should, but I did start today by preparing some pulled pork for a dinner tonight with my defensemen. A great way to kick off the week, although I’m not sure I advise chopping an onion before 6:30 in the morning…

Brad Stevens

Brad Stevens of the Boston Celtics is widely regarded as one of the best and brightest minds in coaching today. Two articles in the last week have started to pull back some of the layers surrounding Brad and what makes him successful.

ESPN’s TrueHoop did this piece on him last week, and the Boston Globe profiled him yesterday.

Two things stand out to me from the articles. First, in the ESPN piece, Kyrie Irving made the statement that “…every single possession matters to him”. Second, Brad himself says in the Globe article that, “…the magic is in the work.”

Two small snippets from the stories that illustrate Brad’s commitment to work and his understanding that every detail matters.

Why Busy Isn’t Productive

We rush around every day in a quest to win the busy trophy. A great read here by Ashley Read about why that’s the wrong approach.

The Unimportance of Almost Everything