When I’m not selling houses, coaching REALTORS, or building Pareto Realty, I can often be found on a soccer field with one of my daughters.
We play a LOT of soccer, and I serve as Team Manager (and assistant coach) on a travel soccer team.
The funny thing about soccer (and life) is that even when we do everything right, we still might not win the game.
The great players have an uncanny resilience which gives them the intestinal fortitude to stay in the game even under the worst of circumstances.
as with every pursuit, soccer players have their own lingo . . . and it occurred to me today that these principles have as great relevance off the field in our work and life.
So . . .
Move into Space – When we’re concerned about what everyone else is doing, we often blind ourselves to wide open spaces into which we can move and make real progress.
Head up – While dribbling/working, we won’t notice new opportunities unless we keep our head up and continually scan the periphery.
Look for windows – Our tendency is to charge forward and straight THROUGH the gauntlet ahead thereby failing to notice subtle windows to shortcuts.
Wait for the pressure – Must we ALWAYS move forward and create pressure? Sometimes it makes more sense to pause and wait for the pressure to show up. This gives us breathing space and spreads the opponent thinner.
Talk – Use your words consistently and persistently to let your teammates know what you see, what you need, and how you can help THEM.
Chatter – The Psych Ops version of “Talk” – Notch it up to an irritating (for the opponent) level to disrupt their acuity
Send it – While we all like to think we can do this all by ourselves, it makes better sense to do your part and then send up the field for your teammate to take it to the next level
WIN that ball -Every new ball that enters our AO (area of Operations) represents an albeit small battle. tackle it, WIN it, then SEND it.
Don’t let it hit the ground – the first person to touch it has the best probability of being able to control it . . . Letting it bounce = missed Opportunity . . . this is no time to flinch or hesitate.
Protect the Goalie – One sure-fire way to avoid losing a game is to have a strong defense thereby minimizing your opponent’s ability to score . . . WIN, tie . . . but don’t lose.
Drop – When things aren’t going well with offensive movement, stepping (dropping) back instantly creates spaces for regrouping and shifting strategy
Move down the line – When you really want to move forward, get out of the middle (where everyone else is) and sprint down the sideline (on the edge)
Cross the ball – as you’re sprinting down the line, a few of your teammates are hopefully moving in the middle along with you . . . as soon as you get in scoring range, cross the ball in front of them – they shoot to FINISH (SCORE)
Switch the field – If things aren’t going well on the right, DROP and CROSS to the left, then move down that line
Be aggressive – Play your personal best always . . . No flinching allowed
Strong passes – If you’re going to pass it off, it’s your responsibility to get it there so your teammate can receive it and do something great with it.
“Touch” the ball – we don’t always have to KICK the ball to make a BIG difference. Sometimes a light touch on a moving ball will provide an altered course that WINS
SHOOT the ball – Even if it’s a long shot . . . Unless you shoot, you won’t score . . . So shoot early and often . . . and always follow your shot just in case you need to finish
Unlucky – Stuff happens and we fumble, miss a shot, or lose a game. as long as we’re doing our best, we know it’s just Unlucky, and we’ll play another game soon.
Play your personal best game EVERY day and follow these principles, and your odds of WINNING increase precipitously 🙂