Your opponent wants to win. They have the same court, ball, humidity, lighting, refs, fan noise, and all the other factors that you do. Our ability to avoid beating ourselves is more under our control than how hard our opponent plays, how they execute, and so many other bounces of the game. Our #1 job is show up ready. To leave all the extraneous junk that doesn’t affect winning out of bounds when we cross the line. To make sure that our toughness, our execution, and our focus are good enough to beat the team on the other side all things being equal…and as much as possible, when unequal. As so many great coaches have reminded us; before you can win the game, you have to avoid losing it.
I think this is fairly obvious to all of who coach when we think about our teams. I believe it’s less so when we think about ourselves. What are the ways I can “lose” in: my faith, my family, my health, my relationships with my team, my dreams? I think focusing on avoiding losing with our teams is one of the primary ways we can lose in our lives if we aren’t careful. To walk in light of both is a balance few seem to attain. May we all be exceptions. Most of us have a “to do” list a mile long with our programs. Don’t forget to have your own “to not do” list when it comes to our personal game in life.
Disclaimer: I’m not writing this because I’ve got it figured out. I’m writing because I know I need to.