Helplessness is learned. Industriousness is too. According to Doc Seligman, learned helplessness starts by letting the untrained brain allow laziness to take hold, slowly learning to stop trying quite so hard, and slowly, slowly, learning to mail it in, eventually throw in the towel, and punt – really punt, like laying down and not getting back up, kinda punt. Learned helplessness leads us down.
Industriousness is learned too. We can learn to enjoy hard things. In fact most joy you or I will ever taste is a result of not aiming at happiness but, instead, doing something that’s hard, rewarding, and sometimes even fun too. We can learn to love pushing ourselves as close as possible to 90 degrees on bars. We can even learn to love the training that leads us to the kinda crazy strength that makes it possible. We can learn to love working on a challenging project like LeVeque or we can loathe it. We can learn to love hard things or we can learn to settle doing what’s comfortable. We can learn to be hard on self without getting down on self or we can learn to go easy on self and settle. We can hear criticism and complaining when pushed by coaches, leaders, or consultants, customers, or competitors. Or we can hear feedback and learning when the same words are said.
Last night in practice 40 and practice 14, a couple teams of coaches and athletes took on some conflict within and with each other. Last night a few captains stepped up, a few coaches did as well. Last night a couple teams were given the opportunity to get better or remain bitter. Today during practice 28 and practice 8, a couple teams learned to build trust by taking on some tough topics and building trust just this side of chaos, instead of behind a fortress. Last night was freakin’ magic. This morning was too.
Do not let your weak moments turn into weak hours, days, and slowly slide into weak identities, friend. We all have moments where are minds are weak. In essence we’re all weak minded now and again. Next time you notice weakness creeping into your mindset, fight it. Tell yourself it’s temporary. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. And, get back to work. Do the hard thing you want to do to build competence, the cool confidence will come. Practice being industrious. Learn this, friend.
And, when you notice a teammate feeling down, lend a hand or an encouraging word. Like my good friend, Lexy, remind ’em – “You’re a fighter, right!” Yes you are, team of gymnasts. Yes you are, team of grapplers. Yes you are, team of K-divas. Yes you are, team of Durps, dubs, and debt collectors. Yes you are, team of Timmyd’s, team of Joeylambs, and team of Tommyc’s. Yes you are, team of Nxtfaux and team of faux minus one. Yes you are, team of homesiders. Yes you are, k-dev leaders. Yes you are, team of builders. You’re all a team of fighters.
Yes. You. Are. Good…