Faith- Doubting God


Today as I was riding around the yard mowing and listening to some good Christian Worship music a few songs came on that really hit me hard and the message I got was that we often have doubt in God and his promises. I have had my times when I doubted God, mostly when things were going bad, getting hard and tough to deal with. We want things and want it our way but that is not how it works with God. When we ask for something or pray for something we do not always get the answer we want. We get what God wants us to have as he controls all things human, spiritual and in between.

As I was thinking about this and listening to the words in these songs the thought of God being constant and always with us, guiding us and helping us hit me hard. I have had a very spiritual evolution of late since I had a near death experience back in September of 2020. I had faith in God but had slipped in that faith and how he has handled me and dealt with me since then has shown me that his love, grace, mercy and care are like no other I could ask for or expect. In the bible its tells us that faith in God is the foundation of life.

Faith in God is the rock by which we build a solid foundation. He is the way, the light, the miracle, the past, the present and the future. Human nature leads to doubt. We are emotional creatures and that emotion can take a toll on our faith on people and the Lord. We struggle at times with mental, physical and spiritual battles. These things create anxiety and fear of the unknown. These things can separate us from God and drive us to carry baggage that God wants us to get rid of.

When things get hard sit down and pray. Make a list of the ways God has blessed you and your family. Making this list will bring you back to the understanding that God is omni present in our lives and is leading us the way he wants us to go. We put ourselves in bad situations and that makes us doubt not only what we believe but our belief on God. We win some, we lose some, we tie some. God always wins and we have to see the wins in these situations to remove doubt. We lose a family member and doubt comes crashing in. Know that God has that soul now and they are fine.

We lose a job, a house, a spouse and other things we have. This throws doubt, anxiety and tests our faith. Hold strong and know that God has this. He is in charge and will take care of things. He will carry us through it. I put together a list of things that I think help me stay stronger in my faith. Things that can help you get closer to God and know that his support and love in constant and always present. We must first overcome our own doubt to overcome the doubt we have in God. Life can be disappointing at times and in those times we must not doubt God, but find strength in his words and actions. God is awesome, caring, loving, supportive and patient. We must be the same to be a person of confidence and not a “doubter”.

1- Do not rely on your own emotions, confidence and actions to try and overcome the big challenges in your life.

2- We adopt worry, anxiety and fear as our way of dealing with things.

3- We question Gods goodness and grace in our lives.

Reading Isiah 26, I found these three ways to cast any doubt we have about God in our lives away.

1- Seek God and his everlasting power when times are tough.

2- Know that God promised us safety, grace and mercy in the Bible.

3- Know that God never doubts us and we should never doubt him.

Dreams and Goals: Five Years From Now

I often imagine where my wife and I will be five years from now. Will we be fully retired, working, traveling, living at the beach or in the mountains? These are just a few of the thoughts I have when I think about that question. To see where we may be five years from now I need to look at where I am right now with life. To do this I have to put together a list of the things most important to my wife and I and then add to that list with details about our current status. We then can look at determining where we want to be in five years and how we will plan to get there. We have been in this process for awhile now and it takes time to decide what you want to be doing in the future.

Our girls are grown and living their lives and doing quite well at it. We are at the phase where we have supported and raised them through college and into their mid twenties so now we will look to do what we want to do in the next five years so we can spend the balance of our lives doing what we want to do. My wife likes the beach more than the mountains and I like the mountains more than the beach. I think either would be great but if we cannot find a way to have both then one will have to give. One of our goals is to have a place at either or both. To accomplish our five years from now goals we had to look at our financial, spiritual, family, work and activity goals.

1- Financial: We want to be financially debt free. In five years we plan to owe zero to no one. Not one red cent to any bank, credit card, mortgage company or anyone. We will likely accomplish this goal long before that because we have a plan in place already. As soon as we sell our current home we can get completely debt free as that is the main debt we carry. Plans are to payoff debt, save and invest for a bright opportunity five years from now.

2- Family: Our girls are grown but we spend lots of time with them not only hanging out but working with them in a family type business situation. We want to be close to them, but also want to travel and find our happy spot for retirement. There is a balance we need ti figure out with that so we have some decisions to make and work on solving that dilemma.

3- Activity: We love to travel around even if it is just a short weekend trip. This allows us to go and see new places, find new things to do and spend time traveling and chilling out. Do we get a new place, buy an RV, rent or pay cash in a central location. Once again we have questions and things to work out. We love the mountains, beach and lakes so is one of those our final living destination as home base. From there we go be active and live our best lives.

As you can see my wife and I have questions to ask and answer in the coming years as we plan to see where we will be five years from now. I do know it will require not working, traveling, enjoying life and spending time with our family and friends. How we accomplish that is TBD and something we will be actively figuring out soon.

Coach B!

Advice: Life Skills That Prepare Kids for Real Life

I have been teaching for a long time and one thing I have observed more lately than in the past is that teenagers are not learning life skills that they will need as an adult. These life skills are needed so they can function and be productive as they get out of school and pursue their dreams and goals. Lots of people joke about it, but you would be surprised at the amount of kids that do not know how to do many of the things listed below. For those that teach your kids these life skills. Good for you and congratulations on teaching them how to be responsible, accept accountability in life and grow their life skills. Below are things my mom and dad taught me growing up and these skills are still needed for our current kids and teenagers.

As they get older, give them more and more responsibility and teach them how being accountable is important in life. You will not always be there, be around or be able to do it for them. Help them grow up knowing basic life skills needed for a successful life. These activities build confidence and grow their level of success by having transferrable life skills for the 21st Century.

1- Teach them how to cook. When I went to college and moved out I could cook more than Mac and Cheese or Ramen Noodles. Cooking requires the use of memory, measuring and other life skills. It teaches them to adapt, make changes and fix things as they go.

2- Teach them to do their own laundry. I know moms hate to do all that laundry (until their kid goes off to college). Teach them to do laundry, to fold and sort laundry. Teach them to take care of their clothes because they are expensive.

3- Teach your children and teenagers to be fiscally responsible with money. They need to learn to save money, learn about spending habits, how to manage credit and other financial matters. Worst thing a young adult can do is go into the world and not manage money smartly. Teaching them now will help them to be more financially sound as adults.

4- Teach them how to type on a computer, laptop and write a letter. They need to know the difference in text talk and actually professional talk required to complete a resume for jobs and careers. LOL, IDK, Yo and all that other text talk does not cut it on the job or on an application.

5- Teach them how to be active and healthy. Being healthy is important and is part of an active lifestyle that will allow them to have the energy and wellness to be successful in life. They do not have to be a gym rat or real fit. Just have good exercise patterns and activity in life.

6- Teach them the value of hard physical labor. Get them off the video games, off the couch and into the yard to cut some wood. Cleanup the yard, mow, pick up trash, trim the bushes and other things that will teach them that hard physical labor and the ability to use tools is a good thing. Many young people can make a great living with tools, trades and good labor skills.

7-Teach them accountability. Your kids must learn to be held accountable in life for their thoughts, actions, comments, reactions and behaviors. Not teaching them discipline and accountability will disable them later in life. Enable them by making sure they understand every action good or bad has a life consequence.

8- Teach them to dress correctly. There is a time and place or flip flops, chill clothes and shades. There is also a time for dressing to the occasion, having clean and neat clothes on. Like going to get a job, an interview and going to church.

9- Teach them how to do basic repairs and maintain a car. Teenagers need to know how to change a tire. How to fix a lose screw. How to use a drill, a hammer, drive nails, build things and tear things down. This can spur an interest in a career and save them lots of money as adults when they need to do basic repairs at home.

10- Teach them good time management skills. Do not be that parent that is always late and getting your kids to school right when the bell rings. Get them out of bed early, get them off to school, sporting events, practice. dance class and all that other stuff on time. Teach them to be early 15 minutes so they do not build a habit of being late for school, work, and appointments.

11- Teach them how to clean. Cleanliness is important and a life skill they will need when they have an apartment, condo or home, Untidy and unclean homes breed disease and laziness. Make them do the dishes, clean their room, wash clothes, mow yards, and other stuff adults assume they cannot do. If they do not do their chores then discipline them.

12- Teach them to do volunteer work. Work with them to develop the skills to help others, serve the community and other people. Serving and helping others is becoming a lost skill and one that everyone needs at times. This teaches them to put other above themselves and will humble them to see that others have it worse than they do.

13- Teach them manners and respect. Teach your kids to be nice, thankful, gracious, kind hearted and positive. Teach them to say yes sir, yes mam, no mam, no sir, please and thank you. These words will get them respect, impress people and help them find and keep a job. Nobody likes a disrespectful little brat!

14- Teach them the value of family and friends. Kids need to know that family and friends are the number one source of help, support, and well being. We all need some type of family “blood kin or otherwise” to help guide us and take care of our emotional needs.

15- Lastly, teach your kids that setting goals, working hard, acting in a positive manner, being nice, being helpful, being a go getter and other life skills is needed for them to be successful at whatever they want or desire. Nobody owes your kids anything in life so make sure they are equipped with the life skills to pull it off and pursue their dreams and goals.

Your kids, teenagers, sons, daughters, siblings, cousins, friends and family will likely exhibit the behaviors that you model for them. What is allowed will persist is an old saying a great coach and mentor once told me. What he was saying to me as a young coach and teacher was “Coach, if you let them do what they want, do not teach them about accountability then you are modeling bad behavior, ideals, actions, thoughts and speech”. They in turn will act the same way and fail at life until they figure it out, hopefully not before it is too late.

Blessings on a skilled and wonderful life for your kiddos!

Coach B

Daily Bread: Winning In Life With God

Winning in Life and With God

Do you have a winning attitude about life? What is your definition of winning?  That all depends on your personal views, background and experience with winning and losing. As a long time career football, wrestling and softball coach I have had to look at winning from two perspectives.  One of those being actual W’s and L’s.  How is my football team competing or how are my individual wrestlers doing? Are they beating people on the field or the mat. That is a statistical way to view winning and many coaches only view it that way.  I know Hall of Fame coaches that have win totals I would love to attain.  They are well known for those stats during their career.

The other way to look at winning is “winning in life” and life after death.  As a coach it is my job to mentor my students/athletes to be active, hardworking and goal oriented adults.  Adults that learned through competition, winning and losing to overcome and push forward. I love seeing my former students go into adult life and succeed on the job, in marriage and whatever they venture into. I love to watch them reap the success of competing at a high level as a wrestler and making the state tournament or winning the ultimate prize of a state championship.  I have been fortunate to have a few of those special wrestlers and they are few and far between.

God is like a coach that pushes us, mentors us and teaches us how to be productive in life.  He especially wants us to be productive Christians that seek his guidance to live a fantastic life full of success. Living his word and seeking his guidance and coaching will allow us to get the ultimate win.  God is consistent and walks with us through life with our success.  He carries us through the losses and always thinks of us above all. How do you try to win at life and how do you want to win with God?

  1. Will you be coachable and work hard to overcome losses and gain more life wins?
  2. Will you be coachable by God and allow his spirit to guide you to afterlife success?

Proverbs 21:31 The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but victory rests with the LORD.

Dear Lord, please come into my life and allow me to be coached by you.  Show me your wisdom, grace and mercy all the days of my life.  Show me through winning and losing that I can always look to you for motivation and consistency.  Amen

Daily Bread: Truth Be Told

The truth be told I am not perfect.  I am a human being that makes mistakes, thinks the wrong things, says and does things at times I should not say or do.  I have to admit that and say to myself, truth be told I am at fault for my failures, shortcomings and setbacks.  I put myself in those moods, mannerisms, thought processes and situations.  I have to hold myself accountable for my actions, beliefs, thoughts, behaviors, and reactions in life.  I have to choose good or bad.  I have to face life standing tall or submit to it.  I have to look at the man in the mirror everyday and tell him he is special and a creation of God. 

Truth be told, we as humans tend to find fault and value in everyone but ourselves.  Regardless of how we look, what color we are, what religion we choose, poor or rich and all those other things that humans value and judge on.  God judges us on our core values of being good, loving, self controlled and kind people to others in our world.  Truth be told we need an occasional reality check.  We need an occasional setback. We need to be held accountable.  We need to refocus on our goals.  We need to spend more time with God and family.  We need to focus on the true blessings and gifts in our lives.  We need to spend less time worrying about silly, frustrating and worrisome things that we ultimately have no control over.

Truth be told, I am who I am and the only person that can change me physically and mentally is me.  God can do the rest and change my soul, spirit and future in that perspective.  Truth be told, I am nothing without my wife and kids,  Truth be told, I love my job  but could live without it.  Truth be told, I love my home, but could live without it.  What I cannot live without is the daily blessings, grace, mercy and guidance my Lord gives me.  He lifts me up when I am down.  He carries me when I am weak.  He guides me when I am confused.  He strengthens my soul when it is at its weakest point.  He loves me regardless of my shortcomings, mistakes, self doubt, pity, self loathing, fear, anger, resentment and all those things we feel.  

He gives us hope, love, kindness, wisdom and most importantly forgiveness.  Truth be told if we could forgive ourselves and others as easily as God forgives us.  Just imagine the things that could fix for us.  Sickness, family issues, relationship issues, work issues, homelessness, drug addiction, sinful behavior, alcoholism and so many other plagues we have in our world.  Truth be told we can change  those things and make the world a better place.  Truth be told we need to spend more time fixing ourselves and less time fixing others and forcing our ideas in them.  Truth be told and the great singer and songwriter Michael Jackson once sang.  “I’m starting with the man in the mirror, I’m asking him to change his ways”.  Truth be told we can do this, but we need God in our lives to do it!

Daily Bread: Nobody loves me like you love me Jesus

Nobody loves me like you love me Jesus

Today I woke up after a very restful night of sleep.  I had positive dreams, slept well and only had to get up a time or two for the bathroom. However, I was not feeling very motivated and seemed to be a bit testy and unappreciative of where I was at that moment in my life.  For some odd reason I just was not “feeling it” today”.  If you know me or read my blog you likely understand that I am generally a very motivated and cheerful person. 

Today was just one of those days I guess and after a little self loathing and momentary period of doubt I rebounded back and by the time I got to work I was excited and ready to get after the day.  I have a plan for 2021 that includes growth in three areas as I come back from a tough 2020 and several health issues that took a lot out of me.  

My plan includes spiritual growth, physical healing and better mental focus (mind, body and soul) are my three goals.  I wrote a plan and each day I look at these areas and focus on them (mostly) but lately for a few days I had lapsed some and took a step back in these areas.  2020 was a tough year for millions of people so I am not going to do the poor pitiful me routine about it. 

Instead I will just say that my journey was one that included a bad case of covid that resulted in 7 days in the hospital and two heart scares in September and November.  During these life events I came to realize that I had work to do on my mind, body and soul.  I have been focusing on the 2021 plan for success in these areas and have made really good progress.

I have lost a total of 30 pounds between having covid and corrective measures in eating habits but the last few days I have been at a stand still.  I am doing the same things over and over but the results are not showing on the scale.  I was frustrated to see that for a few days straight so I was just being pissy for lack of a better term this morning.  I failed to remember that I have lost thirty pounds, improved my health, blood sugar levels and other things on my get better list. 

I got stuck in the moment of pity and doubt because as a go getter and get after it, Seeing those results frustrated me to no end.  I have been spending time with God also daily but the last few it was just a quick prayer and move on.  That does not suffice and has to change as that time needs to be longer and more meaningful for me to gain the spiritual growth I want to attain.  

I also want to grow my mind and do that by writing, reading, studying, meditating and other relaxing activities to spur mental focus and growth.  I have had a bit of writer’s block lately also and have lacked some motivation in that area also.  I use the word writer “lightly” as I am not sure I qualify as a true writer.  I really just look at blogging and writing a few books as mind, body and soul therapy.  I would love to have thousands of followers, but if my writing helps one person on a consistent basis and I never sold a book I can live with that. 

With all this said and long winded story line beginning this morning I had an experience that happens to me quite often and I should learn from it going forward.  In my doubt, pity and temporary madness my God stepped in and shook my foundation a bit.  He sent me a direct message of hope, inspiration and love.  A message of hope, grace and mercy that abounds in me that I needed to keep in mind all day, everyday, every week, every month and every year.  

We live back off the road about a half mile so on the way out I said a prayer asking for God’s grace, mercy, forgiveness and guidance as I felt ashamed for being so doubtful and in a bad mood this morning.  As I turned onto the main road a song came on called Nobody Loves Me Like You Love Me Jesus and I looked up and the sun was rising in the east and was so bright and beautiful.  The lyrics at that moment were talking about the sun rising and Gods present in our lives.  “Morning,

I see You in the sunrise every morning. It’s like a picture that You’ve painted for me: A love letter in the sky.”  I had just prayed for guidance so I could settle down, get focused up and move on with my day.  Seeing that sunrise and hearing those words blessed me and brought me back to the reality that I am saved by grace, offered mercy and healing by God daily.  He is the same today as he was yesterday and will never leave my side or forsake me.

Politics: Shamed, Demeaned and Cancelled- Woke Cancel Culture

Todays writing may hit a few nerves so I give advance notice. If it turns you off or offends your feelings then please read another person postings. However, my hope would be that because we may disagree on this does not mean we have to quit following one another or reading each others work. I am writing this because I am tired of seeing my friends, family and co-workers that do not agree with liberalism, socialism, Democrats or woke culture get cancelled, called stupid and demeaned because they disagree or have a differing opinion of this new movement in America. We have this thing that the country was founded on called the Constitution and it guarantees certain rights under the law.

One of those rights is the first amendment otherwise know as 1A. That gives people the individual right to speak freely, freedom of the press, choose the religion of their choice, “peacefully” gather to protest and petition the government. If your not aware of it go to google and see what it is about. It seems that we have a new culture of people that are now dead set on infringing on this very right from what appears to be a lack of understanding of what it represents “individual right to speak freely” without being censored. I have a suspicion it is being taught to these people by liberal woke teachers and professors in schools. Once again, that is my opinion so that is what it is, an “opinion”.

We can prove that it is all over social media, television, internet sites and the left wing mass media groups. Some of the largest companies in the world are shutting free speech down, especially if it does not agree with their woke ness and views. Heck, this one may get shutdown, but that is OK because I have my rights and refuse to be told how to think, act, behave or get re-engineered to meet someone else’s standards. I will write about my beliefs, opinions, views based on my set of morals and how I think.

I exercise my right to free speech just as most people do on social media sometimes and I do not post things with intent to harm or offend anyone. I simply post things of interest to me that meet the values, beliefs and issues that are important to me as a man, husband, father, teacher, coach and Christian. What has spurred this posting today was a simple picture I posted about gas prices. It showed the price at $2.55 per gallon and I had recently bought gas at the same place a month ago in mid December for around $2.10 a gallon.

Instead of reading the posting and either liking it or stating some type of opinion, suddenly I was hit with replies that I am basically stupid, do not know what I am talking about and other comments. The intent was to show that my idea of progress is not paying .45 more cent per gallon at the pump. It suddenly turned into a posting with liberals posting fact checking, stats and columns from guess where, liberal media sites and outlets. I am an educated man with two Bachelor degrees (one in Business Management) and a Masters Degree with advanced education.

I am smart enough to think for myself, form an opinion and post it without being told by a woke person or liberal that I am stupid and my opinion does not count. Then it expanded into conservatives versus liberal, then it went into Trump versus Biden and what they did or did not do. All over a freaking picture of gas prices simply asking to “please explain how paying more for gas is progress”. I got replies about the Texas storm, renewable energy and other stats. What I wanted was explain to me how going backwards is progress.

(IMO) shutting down the pipeline is impacting gas prices and anyone who cannot see that well I won’t say what I am thinking because then I am part of the problem then. Think of it like this, you own an oil company and have an unlimited supply at minimum cost. The system works and everyone getting it from you is good and its easier on their pocket book. Why in the hell would you sell it to your neighbor, give him control over pricing so he can charge people whatever and think that is progress. Paying higher prices, taxes, costs, losing jobs, losing industry, and many other progressive views cannot be progress. Going backwards is not progress, hell it is actually going backwards.

Does a football running back take the ball and run the wrong way? Does a tractor trailer load heading west turn around and waste time driving East? Does a person wanting to lose weight instead purposely gain 10 pounds? These are silly but tell the story of who truly may not be as “woke” as they think they are. Personally I think as a country we need energy independence while working towards a better future with some green energy options.

The very same people stating I am stupid and do not understand get in their car everyday and drive to work using what “gas”. Gast that is made from oil. Oil that was coming from America and Canada mostly. Duh, dumbass and they want to tell me conservatives speak out of one side of their mouth. Yes, I was told I speak out of one side of my mouth during this posting. Honestly I speak what I consider to be the truth and it comes straight out with no BS, make you feel good sugar coating.

It then turned to Trump and Biden and who is the best and all that bull crap. If you like Biden, good for you and I hope it works out for us all. If you like Trump or King Kong it is your business, opinion and thought process. For the cancel culture folks, please explain to me how tearing up cities, destroying the past and rioting makes things better? Explain to me how a movement that claims to want equality is trampling on the very rights they claim to need. Explain to me how some people of all races, colors, creeds and religions make it in life while others don’t. Explain to me how me and other working class people owe anyone a damn thing.

I have been working over thirty five years and no one ever punched the clock for me and did my job, no one paid my car payment, college loan or mortgage. Why in the hell do we need to do that for basement dwelling college dropouts that will not work because they are “professional gamers”. I refuse to be cancelled, re-conditioned, changed, woke, harrassed or believe that anyone else’s thought process or opinion of me is valid if it involves hate, malice, anger or resentment. You see that is the root of the problem (IMO). The bible clearly states that these things are unGodly and create issues within us.

For the woke generation and cancel culture people reading this. Do your research, use your mind to think and form your opinions, values and beliefs on how you feel and not how others tell you to feel. Stand on your own, be an adult and respect others regardless of how they agree or disagree with you. I will end by saying I could have “cancelled” those people. I could have “erased” the posting. I could have fought back, sent hateful and resentful remarks.

Instead I just read what they had to say, absorbed it and was an adult about it. If I was to unfollow the people that disagreed with me I would then be part of the problem and not the solution. If I was to erase the posting to stop the banter back and forth, then I am giving into their demands and trying to erase or cancel the past.

I will post, read, react and exercise my rights as given to me by the Constitution of this great country. I will consider other views and opinions, but ultimately I will be guided by my belief systems, views and moral code. I refuse to be woke, cancel out the past and allow my country to go to hell in a hand basket by being told how to act, think, behave or believe. I am smart enough to do that for myself whether one agrees with me or not. That is all!

Coach B

Family: Proud Papa Moment

Today I simply just going to share the story above about my oldest daughter Taylor. She has been so successful and I like to write about success and leadership and she has attained that with hard work, dedication and discipline in her business venture. I could not write any better example so enjoy!

Coach B

Leadership: “G” Words Alphabet Series- Great Leaders

Today I am back on my series of alphabet words that describe great leaders, coaches, motivators and people we all are attracted too for being great.  Good leaders can be great leaders if they work really hard at building their management skills and grow their employees, athletes and team members with guidance and direction. These coaches and leaders are often gleeful people that gain the attention and can make people giddy with excitement when it comes to accomplishing goals.  These bosses, coaches, business owners are gems in the rough and often shine as they sometimes have to grin and bear the brunt of organizational missteps, setbacks and failures.

They give their all to the team, staff and organization in an attempt to gain buy-in from everyone so they will generously give of their time, energy and commitment to make things happen.  Great leaders greet people and show them they care and have genuine concern for their well being.  I have worked with many coaches that just had the gusto for life, being successful and gone above and beyond to make dreams come true.  Working with gutsy people helps them accomplish goals, dreams and maintain good values as they do so.  Often being considered as gallant people by those around them, they can galvanize the organization and allow people to use their gifts to give to the overall quality of work life at the company or on the team.  

Great leaders and people are often so glittery and gleaming with positivity all the time.  This enables them to glimmer and win the glory and glamour that often comes with success.  They may be good-looking, good natured and graceful in their actions, behaviors, comments and presentation.  Great leaders can meet people in a gregarious manner and are almost guaranteed to be groovy.  Great leaders and coaches I have worked for were ground breaking and had so much more gumption and gusto than the others on staff.  They showed gratitude and gratefulness for their people and which made them a golden gem of a Godsend type of leader.  

Moral of the story is to know your “G” words, find some the apply to you and go be greatgloriousgargantuanglamourous and ever so graceful as you whip this thing called life into your version of greatness!

Coach B 

Sports: Chasing Championships- Never Let It Override Your Family Time

Coaching for a long time has shown me many things.  I have made one of the biggest mistakes many coaches make and that is losing focus of the family, spouse, kids and the most important people in your life as you pursue excellence and chasing championship rings.  I coached football for almost thirty years and in 2018 after a playoff loss I knew it was time to spend my weekday afternoons, Thursday and Friday nights with my wife and grown kids.  I did my best to manage my schedule when my girls were growing up and rarely missed the big events.  I was fortunate to coach them in softball for many seasons in community ball, travel ball and the high school level.  Coaching at the high school level requires a good 25-30 extra hours a week of time depending on the sport.  

Most days if your a teacher and football or wrestling coach run12-15 hours and that adds up quickly.  Countless days coming home at 8:00-9:00pm just in time to eat a little, spend a few minutes catching up and back to bed to recover and do it again tomorrow.  It is a passion that is not for everyone, but one that also can eat all of your time up.  I know lots of coaches that literally missed a bunch of very important events with their family and spouses due to coaching and chasing wins and rings.  With this being said I want my fellow coaches, leaders, teachers, pastors, mentors, business owners and whatever hat you wear to remember this one piece of advice from a long time coach.  The most important ring is the one your spouse is wearing. 

Let me repeat this, the most important ring you ever chased, bought, worked hard for and earned was the one your spouse is wearing.  Do not let coaching isolate your family, sons, daughters, parents and spouse. Work hard, accomplish what it is you want that day and go home.  I used to be told that I was one of the first to arrive on campus and because I coached three sports for over 13 years I was one of the last to leave.  One day I realized something had to give and it could not be my relationship with my wife and kids.  So I gave up head softball coaching, then football went in 2018 and now my only coaching job is still as a Head Wrestling Coach.  I have learned to manage the time, energy and prioritize things much better as I gained experience, got older and learned from my mistakes.  Below are some tips for balancing coaching and family.

1- Make sure family time is on your schedule.  If that means you cut short a coaches meeting or wash the dirty team laundry the next day then find a time and stick to it.  Do your best to manage family time and watch your kids grow up.

2- Set boundaries with the players, assistant coaches and parents.  Have a meeting and emphasize that players must have rides at the end of practice.  You would be surprised the extra time coaches spend sitting in the car or office waiting on a parent to pick up a kid.  That is valuable time you cannot get back so establish a procedure for this. Your already giving tons of time, so do not waste the other waiting on people that cannot get their daily routine in order.

3- Delegate Responsibility.  This is a huge one and is hard for many head coaches and athletic directors to do.  Assign duties to players and coaches to take care of things. Two things I always volunteered for over the years was washing the dirty clothes from practice and making sure the locker room was clean.  I would assign the locker room cleanup by football position and have an assistant coach watch over it daily to make sure it was done.  Being on a team is more than practicing and playing.  It is about sharing, helping and keeping everything neat, tidy and clean.  

4- Include your own kids and family as much as possible.  My kids grew up on football, softball and practice fields. They went with me to practices and games, helped out with managerial duties, kept scores, cleaned up and lots of other duties.  They learned life skills doing this and were able to spend time with the team, the coaches, made friends and great memories.

5- Prioritize your spouse over everything.  Communicate with your spouse, spend time with them, go our to eat after school or practice.  Take short weekend trips or just spend time with them chilling out.  This is the most important part of your support network.  My wife gets all the credit for putting up with my coaching and was always my #1 support system.  She was the one that I went home to when things were great, good, bad, ugly, hard, difficult and special.  

Coach B!

Health: Physical, Mental and Spiritual Impact of Tragedy

Today I am writing a brief post about one of the hardest times in my life.  I was coaching at a local high school and halfway through the season our head coach and my good friend passed away suddenly and unexpected.  This was a huge loss for his family, students, athletes and the community as a whole.  I am going to go into all the details of what happened, but instead will talk about the loss of a dear friend and coach and how the coaching staff and team responded to that loss.  Losing important people in out lives is never easy and brings a rush of emotion that we deal with for sometimes months or even years.  I was the offensive coordinator at the time so when my friend passed I was asked to continue the season as the interim head coach.  I remember the conversation with the principal when he asked me to take things and finish the season.  

I gladly took the responsibility not because it was a chance to take the program over.  It was the right thing to do in honor of my friend, players, community and school.  I went home that day and just prayed and cried about it.  This was a really bad situation and I had to find a way to step up, hide my emotions and feelings and stand tall for my players.  I sat down and came up with a plan that I wanted to use to try to manage the coming weeks activity which included a memorial service, a funeral, practice. planning, teaching, counseling crying and overcoming the fact that I was not Coach C.  My goal never was to replace such a great man, it was simply to honor him.  I will leave the football story at that and move into the emotional, physical and spiritual impact that this loss and the events that followed took on my mental, physical and spiritual help.

As you can imagine, by the end of the week I was broken in all three areas.  I was wore out, tired, emotional, couldn’t sleep and many other things that were going on.  I was trying to manage life at home, life at work, coaching, grieving and supporting the players, coaches and staff.  When tragedy strikes we often are tasked with the responsibility of stepping up and leading through these tough times.  We do not expect it or ask for it and without warning bam, we are now sitting on the toughest situation of our lives.  I have always been a person to step out front when needed and do what I can in whatever capacity.  I willingly took the responsibility with a goal of just keeping things as normal as possible as we all worked to overcome the loss of our coach and friend.

1- It is in tragedy and strife that we become our strongest.  It takes courage, strength, internal fortitude and drive to keep going when things are really bad.

2- It is in tragedy and strife that we realize just how important people were to us when we tell them goodbye one final time.

3- It is in tragedy and strife that we learn to overcome the physical, mental and spiritual beating we take by just moving forward.

4- It is in tragedy and strife that we see how pushing emotions, grief, anger, and all the other emotions to the side can build us up, but also tear us down later on.

5- It is in tragedy that we honor those we love, help their family, our community and friends out who are in need.

6- It is in tragedy that we look to our faith in God, family, friends and community to make it, to deal with it and to adapt.  We seek counsel and grow in our faith in all things good through the bad.

We all face tragedy, especially the lose of loved ones in life.  We fight the emotional, physical and spiritual burdens brought on by that.  But we also step up, rise up, battle, fight and eventually overcome all of it and live with the precious memories of our dearly departed souls we miss everyday going forward.

Coach B 

Advice: Life Skills We Need Learn Growing Up

Playing some form of organized sports is like a right of passage for many of us.  I grew up in a large family where every boy played football.  All of my brothers, and boy cousins played football at some point in their life.  Most of my girl cousins played basketball and softball in school, but they also played football on Sunday afternoons at my Grandma’s house.  These games were brutal with heavy hitting, tackling, blocking and running.  We all got cuts, bumps, bruises, stitches and a few broken bones at some point in our childhood and teenage life.  Through these injuries and tough hits, we learned things about life that later propelled us to become productive adults, parents and friends.

Learning life skills is an important part of the process of growing up and as a coach and teacher one of main focus points is to teach my kids the valuable life skills that can help them lead a good life.  A life that allows them to work, live, play and do what they want to do.  A life that is an example to others around them.  Life skills are defined as having the ability for adaptive and positive behavior that enable individuals to deal with the daily stress and demands of everyday life.  

Coaches, leaders, parents, mentors, pastors, family leaders and others want their people to learn these top ten life skills that will help them be great in life and give them the tools to empower others around them.  These are learned over time, through experiences and develop as we get older and make good decisions and bad ones along the way.  Sports teaches these life skills to people if they are focused on the right concepts and keep in mind the end goal of making our young men and women the best possible adults we can.  We want to produce student athletes and children that become good parents that will in turn continue the line of successful adults by teaching their kids life skills.

1- Self Awareness- Teach self awareness and how important it is to know who you are and be an individual.

2- Empathy- As a nation we are much less empathetic than we once were.  Empathy is needed so you know how others feel when things are bad or not going so well.

3- Critical Thinking- Being able to critically think is very important.  Too many people are growing up on google now and do not know how to look at things from a critical stand point and make a good logical decision using that information.

4- Creative Thinking- Can a person use creativity in situations at home, work and play.  Working in a professional job often requires someone to be creative even if they are not artistic.  Some of the best inventions of all time came from someone using creative thinking in their garage or basement.

5- Decision Making- Being able to make a valid decision and using information and data is important in life.  We make some huge decisions like buying homes, cars, investments, having children and others that impact our current and future life.  

6- Problem Solving- Can you solve a problem when you have to.  Coaches and parents are constantly solving problems.  We fix one and another comes up.  Being effective at problem solving is a needed skill to avoid frustration and stress associated with it.

7- Effective Communication- Are they effective at communicating their needs, wants and desires in a professional and educated way.  Learning time and place is important in this process.  I tell my students there is always a time and place for different types of communication.  They will not be able to speak slang or street lingo at a job or in an office.  Save that for hanging out with friends and know when and where to use it.

8- Emotional Management- You might say what is this?  It is being able to manage feelings, emotions, reactions, behavior and actions when dealing with people.  It is also about limiting emotional baggage which is one of the biggest things that destroys relationships and job potential.  Otherwise known as being “Cray Cray”.  

There are all kinds of life skills needed to be a mature, productive adult that lives a great life.  Work on developing these skills and use them to your advantage.  Then teach them to your children so we continue to produce good people that will love other people and make the world a better place.