Forgot how long it’s been since I have updated this. I originally wanted to blog every day which I am sure is a goal many bloggers have starting out but is ultimately unrealistic. Although I still think more than 7 days between posts is a bit long. Last time I wrote a bit about the first regatta with the team I am coaching this summer. It was successful in that the sailors had fun and did better than they expected which is always a bonus. This was a newer experience for me as it was the first time in a long time – 5 years or more – that I have worked with kids who were not going to be in any real contention to win the regatta, and I found it very rewarding.
I’ve spent a lot of time the past few years working with sailors at the intermediate level and above. Trying to take them to the advanced levels of the sport so they are ready for college. Usually there is a lot of disappointment in failing to reach a predetermined goal so going into this event with the focus of just doing the best we could so there is a baseline to start from took quite a bit of pressure off. I have high hopes for the sailors as they all enjoy the process of getting better and putting in work at practice.
I had a conversation with someone several years ago about having fun and human motivation and why we even bother to do things. My position was that if you stripped away all the medals and competitions, awards, and scholarships, people would still do things they enjoy because of the simple act of mastery. Or in the more blunt terms that my room mate later put it as I was venting to him “no one likes to do anything that they suck at”. My argument was that people want to feel like they are getting better at something regardless of it being a sport or activity or what not. Whether it is learning new recipes or lifting more weight than last time or knitting some crazy pattern (I think that is the proper knitting jargon). There is a high level of personal satisfaction in being able to do something that you originally couldn’t at some point in time and it could have zero relation to competition.
I try to instill that mentality in everyone I work with, be happy in the improvement. When you go to to compete and you do your best you’ll end up happy no matter how it goes.