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Coaches Are Human

The amount of sleep lost over someone else's kid... It weighs on you. It makes you question a lot of things and how you are going to make this player successful. I didn't always think like this. I put my personal feelings aside and wanted to just coach. When I first started it was fun, but I treated players more like robots because I just wanted to coach. I realized that I could actually be myself with a good balance of being a coach and being a human. The hardest part came with understanding how to do both in a professional manner.

Coaching is a results business. People want results. What kind of results is up to them. Do they want to judge success by looking at gotsoccer points? Or do they want to see how their child has developed mentally and physically overtime? Some understand that there will not be overnight success, but others... They want results in 5 business days. This process is just that, a process, and with the approach that I take, it is about building the person first while building the player. Character is such an important aspect in life, so we create a professional enviroment to allow players to grow. Players may be with me for an hour - six hours a week. This is their time to really be themselves and play something that they enjoy. Escape for a bit. It becomes theraputic. You receive support from those families that make what you are doing more than worth it. They see the results that they are after both on and off the field.

The issue with this approach is that sometimes the outside influences see this as not coaching. "Too much talking" it gets labeled as even though their child is becoming more confident and excited about going to training. That is the result that I am focused on over wins and losses.

Opinions always make it back to the coach in some form. I remember during covid when parents were on the same sideline as the team was. You can hear everything. Positive and negative comments from the parents side. It is impactful on the decisions you make. I made choices based on what I was hearing and sometimes it took me completely out the game. You become emotionally involved and know that people are judging your every move. We aren't at the professional level of coaching, so you can only ignore so much before having to address the situation. It eats at you. You can lose yourself and your ideas with the wrong environment. You can lose the players as well when negativity takes over in the car ride home. They have a crab in a bucket mentality and try to bring others down with them. It is an unfortunate situation, but we are human.

As a coach, you want the best for every single player that comes through any of your programs. You want to see them progress on and off the field. The care that goes into establishing relationships and showing empathy is endless. While we only have a short amount of time to work on these relationships, it is crucial that we do. Knowing what type of lifestyle that the player lives goes into the way that we need to coach them. If a player has a parent who is constantly negative, we must show that player a lot of love. Put belief and trust into them as much as possible. This may be their only time to escape that environment. Our training sessions may not be as intense from those watching from the parking lot, but what we are working on is more than just this sport. There will be loads of mistakes on the way. The focus leading into the week may get shifted slightly, but the goal is exactly the same. Developing great young men and women to be prepared for what is next in their life.

I appreciate every single person that has trusted me over the years. While I know that I am far from the best coach. I strive to be the best human that I can be.

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