Coaching is hard.
It has always been hard. However, I don’t think it has ever been as hard as it is right now. There is more stress and strain than ever before.
I have been reflecting lately on leading and coaching in 2022. Here is what I am seeing and hearing.
There is more pressure on kids now. There are more distractions for kids now. They seem to be less prepared to enter high school or college than ever before. More and more kids are entering high school/college with a deficit of toughness, resilience, and accountability. (I actually don’t think it is the kids who are at fault). They are distracted, struggling with mental health, and dealing with all sorts of pressures.
I just want to encourage you. If you are leading young people right now, thank you.
Keep it up. You are making a difference. Don’t quit. You are going to get phone calls from parents unlike any you have ever received. You are going to hear and see things from your athletes that you have never before heard or seen.
Keep going. It’s really hard but worth it. You are making a difference. You might not think you are…or it might not ‘feel’ like it, but trust me, you are.
Sometimes the payoff of coaching is felt immediately. You have a young person come to you after the season and tell you what you have meant to them. You get a call from a parent encouraging you about the effect you had on their son’s or daughter’s life.
But most of the time…especially now, there is a lagging effect. Instead of getting that call, you get another type of call. The one where the parents blame you for Johnny’s poor grades and poor performance.
Instead of an athlete coming to your office to encourage you, they text to inform you they are entering the portal or transferring to another high school.
But if you will continue to do things right. If you will continue to love and challenge at extremely high levels, at some point they will be grateful for what you did for them.
Maybe in 6 months. Maybe in 6 years. And maybe in 26 years.
Keep going…It is worth it.
“A coach will impact more people in one year than the average person will in an entire lifetime.” Billy Graham