I won’t tell anyone if you don’t.
You see, it’s not socially appropriate to say
this out loud.
If you do, people will look at you funny. They’ll
give you the gas face.
They may even act offended.
Who are these people?
Coaches, parents and trainers who say:
“I only coach for the kids.”
“The only reason for coaching is the athletes.”
Well unless they were raised by Buddhist monks
that’s just not a true statement.
Do you coach for the kids? Yes.
Mostly for the kids? Yes, of course.
But ‘only’ for the kids?
Give me a break.
It’s perfectly OK to admit to being just a
little bit selfish. To admit that part of the
reason you like coaching is because developing
successful athletes and running a winning program
makes you feel good…about yourself.
That doesn’t make you lesser of a person or
lesser of a coach.
It’s OK to have personal goals and expectations
that are separate from ‘the athletes’.
It’s OK to allow yourself to feel satisfaction
and pride from the good coaching job YOU did.
Because it’s not a ‘black or white’ issue.
And it’s not an ‘either/or’ proposition.
As long as you don’t let your personal goals
and aspirations affect your interactions with
your athletes, then you can still stand on
both sides of the fence.
It’s not very difficult to separate what you
want for yourself from what you want for your
The coaches who say they *only* do it for the
athletes are just as arrogant as the ones who
only do it for themselves. They’re just on the
opposite end of the spectrum.
It’s still all about them. They’re better than
those coaches who care about petty trappings of
the Ego like ‘winning’ and ‘personal glory’.
I like the feeling of knowing that my program
or system helped athletes achieve levels of
success they otherwise wouldn’t have been
able to experience.
I like the feeling that comes from people coming
up to me and saying ‘Man what are you doing
with your athletes? It’s like night and day
since they started working with you’.
I like the feeling of having former athletes
call and email me years after they graduated
to thank me for helping them become better both
on and off the field.
It doesn’t make it any less about the kids.
It just means you don’t have to pretend to be
Mother Teresa all the time.
So yes, you coach mostly for the athletes. But
you coach for yourself too.
Let go of the idea that you have to feel
guilty or selfish about that. When you
change the way you look at things, the things
you look at change.
So do it because you want to do it. Mostly
for your athletes, but partly for you too:
And don’t worry. I won’t tell anyone. It can
be our little secret.