The Life-Changing Impact Of A Coach
There is no greater or important person in society than a coach. And while I often state that everyone is an athlete, everyone is also a coach.
In life, we are ALL Nurses and Patients.
A coach will impact more people in just one year than most people will in their entire lifetime. We all can remember both our favorite and least favorite coach.
My favorite coach was still my J.V. soccer coach, Rick Lushbaugh who taught me that I didn’t HAVE TO sweat and push myself running up this steep hill in the heat of August with my teammates. NO SIR! He taught me that I GET TO run up this hill. Training is a privilege.
Remember these impactful coaches that made us believe in how good we could become and sadly, those who also showed us how we did NOT want to do things.
When things go horribly wrong with people and society, my belief is that the impact of a coach was not evident at the moment. There was no coach to guide them and point out the blind spots in their life.
Everyone needs the life-changing coach!
A coach is someone who takes you someplace that you want to go. Think of a stagecoach!
Jerry Palmieri received the lifetime achievement award for NFL strength Coaches. He wonderfully represents a select cohort of coaches. He’s won two SuperBowl trophies and retired from the NY Giants. He’s been in strength coaching profession since 1983.
He gave an excellent reflective, lifetime speech and talked about the things he learned from coaching. It was after he mentioned all of his mentors and proteges in the room that it dawned on me.
This man has personally coached thousands of athletes and mentored hundreds of other strength coaches. One can safely estimate that the people he deeply impacted and directly changed their lives goes across generations.
Then, from the number that he directly impacted to the many numbers of people that they themselves impacted gets pretty mind-boggling.
The trickle-down effect from his coaching has to be in the hundreds of thousands. That’s the impact of a coach!
So, what type of coach are you?
Everyone is a coach! Knowing yourself is key to being an incredible coach.
We all have insecurities and strengths as people. No one is perfect in all areas of their life and hence there are NO perfect coaches. But the key is: do you as a coach create better people, who in-turn positively impact others? Do you create a better US?
You may be thinking “of course”, but here’s the difficult rub. Unless we transform our own pain and insecurity in lives, then we will transmit it to others. Usually, those closest to us will feel our own junk. We will project our stuff onto them!
This strange thing about life and performance is that the toughest person to coach is ourselves. I do not think that we were created to coach ourselves. It requires us to seek out and connect with others! We simply can’t coach ourselves in all areas. Now, I don’t need a coach about how to brush my teeth or stay motivated, but I need others in my life to point out my own blind spots.
Do you facilitate a culture of excellence? Because if your presence doesn’t make an impact, then sadly, your absence won’t make a difference.
Lou Holtz stated that we are trying to create a culture where you are missed when you are absent.
No matter who you are, someone looks up to you and watches your actions. You make an impact even though we can’t always know the significance.
As coaches, we plant trees that we will never see.
We plant trees whose shade other people will enjoy. If we are fortunate enough we will see the gravity of our coaching, years later, seeing who they developed into as people.
So, the question is will you be that Hinge person in someone’s life? Will you represent the impact of a coach and be the person that they look back and say“you” made the biggest difference in who they became?
Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & Associates is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the mental toughness books.
Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment.