Books – Win Forever by Pete Carroll

Fantastically great book on developing personal philosophies and an approach to coaching and more importantly leaving both on and off the field.  Lots of good value if you’ve been a manager for a few years and you get weighed down by setting goal after goal, year after year and finding a way to stay motivated and how to lead long-term.  Also some good football references and stories from his time at USC, failures in the NFL, and what’s changed as he approaches his new challenge with the Seahawks.

Amazon Review Here

My Notes:

Always competing is a concept of always driving the best that you can be.  It has nothing to do with other people, however you can use that competition too to bring out the best in yourself.  “That’s why it doesn’t make sense to think about competition in the context of any one opponent: if you are really in a “Win Forever” mindset, the only comparison that matters if yourself.  Your goal should be to maximize your potential and your performance as a permanent way of being, rather than just thinking in terms of individual victories.”

Leadership with this approach – One of the most important facets of the Win Forever Approach is to help people see what they can become and them to support them.  This is about making a connection with their potential until it becomes real for them.  It’s not so much about getting to the goal in a certain amount of time, as it is about the process of working to get there.  You have to continually encourage people to the point where they feel empowered to call the shots that will position them to become the best they can be.  It’s not about one specific thing, but rather an ongoing process of showing them what they’re capable of.

Vision – I have learned that if you create a vision for yourself and stick with it, you can make amazon things happen in your life.  Do the work to create the clear vision, it’s the discipline and the effort to maintain the vision that can make it all come true.  What you expect is usually what you get.  You draw it to you.

Long Body – when in a focused state similar to what Maslow calls “peak performance” individuals within the group seemed to develop a single consciousness acting with one will, sensing and feeling as one.  A single shared heartbeat.  Sometimes you can use meetings to set the tone for our attitude and approach the next day.

If Jake Olsen can do it with a great attitude and appreciation for what he had then you probably can to.  it’s not tough, it’s just your mindset and how you perceive the thing right in front of you.  Jake ended up loosing both eyes to cancer, but you can say he beat cancer by never letting his vision define him or hold him back.  If Jake can do it, so can you.

Essentially, a clear, well-defined philosophy gives you the guidelines and boundaries that keep you on track. The difference between a bullet and a guided missile is that once a bullet is fired, it’s out of anyone’s control, but a guided missile is specifically designed to make course corrections. This is what a philosophy does for you—it helps you make the course corrections that you need.

When you truly know yourself, you have the best chance of using your strengths to your best advantage. And when things aren’t going so well, it is so much easier to get back on track when you have a plan for where you want to go.

Always Compete – 

Always Compete… As you progress through your sporting life… Always Compete. If you want to go for it… Always Compete. You’re gonna have to make choices in life and those choices need to be conscious decisions. There’s only one person in control here, and that person is you… You hold all the cards. You are the master of you. It’s time to admit it… You have always known this. So if you’re ready, act on it… Always Compete. Don’t you dare try to be too cool, don’t you dare be afraid of life, Just “dare to be great,” and let it rip. Always be humble, always be kind, always be respectful… Always Compete. Everything you do counts and screams who you are. There is no hiding from you. Act as if the whole world will know who you are… Always Compete. Be true to yourself and let nothing hold you back. Compete to be the greatest you, and that will always be enough and that will be a lifetime! Always Compete.

Practice is everything – or victory loves preparation.  The goal of practice is to compete like the real game, build up so much confidence, you won’t be afraid or scared about what’s coming towards you, because you’ve already seen it in practice.  You are confident.  you are certain that you’ll win the game. In my time as a coach I’ve learned that possibly the greatest detractor from high performance is fear: fear that you are not prepared, fear that you are in over your head, fear that you are not worthy, and ultimately, fear of failure. If you can eliminate that fear—not through arrogance or just wishing difficulties away, but through hard work and preparation—you will put yourself in an incredibly powerful position to take on the challenges you face.  Ideally, we want to create an atmosphere or a culture where our players can perform in the absence of fear.

One of the reminders for our coaches was to “critique effort first,” meaning they were to look at the effort the players were demonstrating before critiquing assignments and techniques.

terminology. I don’t like synonyms and varied definitions when it comes to terminology. If you want to communicate effectively, you need to be clear with the words you use.