Saturday was a tough day for me professionally. We were 0-4 in the CAA duals and were not very competitive in several individual match ups. I felt we took a big step backward. It is a day that makes you question if you are doing things correctly. It makes you evaluate almost everything you are doing. Days like the day we had Saturday are days when you need to look at yourself in a mirror and do some self-review. Take a good hard look at the man in the mirror. Make necessary changes.
I did some self-reflection. Sometimes it is difficult to see your own faults, so it is also good to speak with trusted advisers. I did ask for advice from others. Heck, others offered advice unsolicited.
I still firmly believe we have the right plan in place for the team to be successful. I think we are hitting the right points. We need to stay the course. We need to keep doing what we do. We need to believe in the system.
I spoke to the team after the tournament. I told them not to panic. I said we are doing the right things. I asked them to trust me and trust the system. I need them to believe in themselves. I need them to believe in the system. I need them to believe I can help them reach their goals.
One of my life mottos I learned from a pastor of a church I attended is to “live life by design and not from crisis to crisis.” I even had them place this as my quote as part of the medal of courage display at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. I want the guys to follow our team rules of self-review, fixing mistakes, excellence in everything we do, getting 1% better every day, give their best effort, and have a great attitude… We have a design for this program. We have a plan. We will follow the design. We will not just react from crisis to crisis. We have a plan to deal with crisis before it even rears its ugly head.
I want these guys to grow as men as well as wrestlers. Sometimes life can seem difficult. Sometimes it can be overwhelming. We need to use wrestling as a means to grow as people. I received a great comment to my blog last week that I posted for the team to see. I thought it was right on point. The comment read, “The purpose of wrestling is to refine our character. It’s not about wins and losses. That’s just a way to motivate us to go back and submit ourselves to be refined some more. Think about it. When you won a medal and stood on the podium – did you pin the medal on your jacket, did you even take it out of it’s case? I’ve seen medals draped over wrestlers’ heads while they stand on the podium and as they step down, they take it off immediately. Is that what you worked so hard for? Medals end up in the bottom of a drawer. The discipline, responsibility, integrity, hard work, sacrifice, and courage you learn from wrestling are the medals that you wear on the inside of you the rest of your life. So don’t measure yourselves in wins and losses. Focus on character. It calls you to respond to a higher level and it answers back with rewards that you haven’t even imagined yet.” I love what he said and how he said it.