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Reward Courage

Why do athletes avoid hard/new/uncomfortable things when it really matters?

Because they receive negative judgement when it doesn't work out.

Here's an example of the opposite: I was playing pickle ball this morning (I'm a 3.5) and everyone in the group was better than me.

I tried some tough shots. Many of them didn't work out. And this is what I heard: "That's the right idea." "Keep trying those shots, even if you miss." "That was SO CLOSE!"

So I kept trying those tough shots.

What if I had heard: "What the F are you doing?!" "You gotta make that shot!" "Are you kidding me?!" "We just worked on that in practice!"

Or nothing was said but non-verbal body language spoke loudly.

What if I got subbed out? What if I had to do pushups or run lines till I puke?

Would I continue to try those hard shots?

HELL NO!! I don't f-ing want to do pushups! I don't f-ing want to run till I puke! So I’m going to stop trying to do those tough shots and go back to what I’m already good at.

If we want our athletes to continue to grow and stretch, STOP punishing mistakes. STOP focusing on the outcome.

Reward the process. Reward courage.


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