Putting on the game face while coaching
As a general rule, I strive to keep myself out on the front end of the softball world. I’m constantly looking for new information and new ways of doing things.
There is one area, however, where I am pretty much “old school” – how I view opponents when we’re playing. Normally I’m a pretty friendly person. But when I’m coaching I tend to be rather, shall we say, focused and intense.
I am a competitor. I always have been. As the Billy Beane character says in the movie Moneyball, I hate losing more than I like winning. So when my team is playing, I’m not particularly interested in meeting new people and making new friends.
In fact, I can’t really understand those who are. I’ve seen plenty of coaches who like to come up and chat as though we’re just hanging out at a bar somewhere watching a game neither of us has a stake in. I’ll respond politely, usually. But I still don’t get it.
When we’re playing I’m not interested in being your friend or chatting about the weather. I’m interested in figuring out how to beat your team and not a whole lot else.
I dunno. Maybe it’s a character flaw. But at this point in my life, and my coaching career, I don’t see it changing.
So what about you coaches? Do you like chatting with the opponents? Or are you more like me and view them as an obstacle to be overcome and dispatched without prejudice?