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Changing the Question

What if we take a risk and it does not work out?

This was the question I was asked by one of the competitors this past week when I spoke at the Adidas Future 500 Soccer ID Camp at Eastern University.

This question is a common question that young competitors have floating around in their mind. What if we take a risk and it does not work out?

This question is focused on the failure or lack of success that are possible in any risk that is taken and the mindset that is pervasive throughout society that gets pushed into our young competitors’ minds. It is the goal of the Heart of the Competitor to change this mindset and ask a different question, “What if we never take the risk, what would we miss out on?”

This is a striking change in perspective.

The original question is focused on the failure and lack of success, as measured by society and it is the narrative that many competitors, young and old have floating around in their mind, the fear of failure and at the same time, the fear of success. The original question is focused specifically on fear. The challenge is to move from fearing to enjoying the experience that is our life, our competition. Our life is a competition with our self to get the most out of it. We are blessed with the opportunities that are presented to us and we are blessed to take action on these opportunities. The actions we take allow us to learn and then apply this learning in future opportunities. Taking action creates an abundance of opportunities for us to increase the experiences available to us.

So ask yourself the question: “What if we never take the risk, what would we miss out on?”

Then, go and do the thing you have been holding back on. When competitors young and old look back on their lives, they will regret more of what they did NOT do, than more of what they did do.

If you are a coach reading this, allow your competitors to take risks and be there to provide the learning context from their action.

If you are a parent, support your child’s coach in taking risks to build a great program AND support your child in their risk taking.

If you are a player, go out and perform, freely, enjoying the experience and learning from each opportunity, in other words, go out and COMPETE.

Enjoy the experience that is your Competition.



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Amazing Opportunities

Look around your life. Seriously, take a look around your life and deeply evaluate the opportunities that abound in your life. There are many opportunities, yet the question remains, will you take the step forward and take advantage of these opportunities?

This thought struck me during our family vacation this past week. We rented a condominium in Stone Harbor, New Jersey. When we arrived on Saturday and got settled in to the rental, another family arrived in the condominium right beside us with children that were perfect matches as play partners for the week for our two boys, Simon and Spencer.

As the week progressed, this struck me as an amazing opportunity. Imagine what had to happen for this to occur, I mean my wife, Emily, took countless hours and days to find a rental that matched what was best for our family, while at the same time a family in Pittsburgh was renting the exact same condominium right beside us.

What are the chances?

It does not matter what the chances or the odds are on this happening, but it provided an opportunity for two families to become friends and develop a relationship. It was up to us to take the step and make the connection and take advantage of this opportunity. This is true for us in our lives. Take a look around and look at the amazing opportunities around you, but it is up to you to take the first step. Take advantage of the opportunities that are there, take the next step, make the connection, seize the opportunity, and live a life with no regrets. This is a true competitor, seeking to become the best and create the best competitive life for yourself.

Book Update

 As many of you know, I have been working on a book that can be utilized as a daily reader. This past week, I received the first proof of the book. This marks another step forward in this process, another opportunity for me and the coaches and athletes I am blessed to serve. Additionally, I recently completed an audio program that is made up of 3-5 minute tracks that should be listened to on a daily basis, placed into your daily routine. Since this audio program has been completed and is available, we have a special opportunity happening for the month of June, when you order the Competitor’s Heart Audio Program, we will reserve a book and send it to you FREE when it is completed. Check out the Competitor’s Heart Audio Program Here.

Keep taking advantage of the amazing opportunities in your life.

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Taking the Time to BE Quiet

“Usually, when the distractions of daily life deplete our energy, the first thing we eliminate is the thing we need the most: quiet, reflective time. Time to dream, time to contemplate what’s working and what’s not, so that we can make changes for the better.”

― Sarah Ban Breathnach, Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy

Life as a competitor is intense with competition for our focus and attention coming from every direction. To perform at our peak, we must take time for ourselves, time to focus on our goals, to eliminate any distractions that may occur. This elimination and total focus is extremely difficult because we are constantly barraged with requests and notifications that draw our focus away from a time of peace and inner reflection and evaluation.

The Heart of the Competitor makes a commitment to setting aside a quiet and reflective time in which they focus on themselves; they build this quiet time into their daily routine. This reflective time is essential to the growth that is occurring in the Heart of the Competitor, remember the Heart of the Competitor is focused on who we are becoming. We are not focused on the person or competitor that we currently are, we are focused on learning and the competitor that we are becoming.

Set aside time in the morning routine or time in the evening routine before going to bed for a period of quiet reflective time. The institution of this period of “quietness” will develop the skill of living in the present moment focusing on what is currently happening rather than what could, should, or would be happening.

Question of the Day:

 Develop a time and place where you set aside 5 minutes to focus on a quiet and reflective period of time. Commit to where and when this will occur.

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What does total Commitment look like?

“If you don’t make a total commitment to whatever you’re doing, then you start looking to bail out the first time the boat starts leaking. It’s tough enough getting that boat to shore with everybody rowing, let alone when a guy stands up and starts putting his life jacket on.”

– Lou Holtz, Hall of Fame College Football Coach

Commitment to the process of progress over a long period of time allows achievement and accomplishment to occur. Total commitment is made of mind, body, and soul to the task at hand in the pursuit of the dreams that have been made into goals. When a total commitment is made teammates, coaches, and everyone they come in contact with recognize the commitment in the competitor’s life.

Just as commitment is recognizable and easily followed, lack of commitment is easily identified. Are you looking to go whichever way the wind blows? Are you lacking or always changing your morning or evening routines? Do you have trouble being motivated to complete your training? Are you always looking for an easy way out? Like Hall of Fame College Football Coach, Lou Holtz is saying in today’s quote, total commitment to a goal, total commitment to a team is difficult. Total commitment becomes more difficult when in the face of adversity one of the individuals is looking to “jump ship.” Instead of looking for an opportunity to “jump ship,” look for an opportunity to row harder and push your mind and body to stay focused on the next step.

Commitment must be the strongest in the face of adversity. The Heart of the Competitor expects and embraces adversity as an opportunity, an opportunity to develop and display their commitment. The true Heart of the Competitor appreciates the adversity as a way to grow.

Look for the adversity; look for the challenges as your way to grow your commitment.

Question of the Day:

What challenges have you encountered in the last day, week, or month that have allowed you to develop and display your commitment?