Basketball Coaching: Step Out of Your Comfort Zone!

brad_stevens.jpg"If you want something you've never had, you must do something you've never done." - Thomas Jefferson

This is a powerful quote that some of you may have used with your players, but how many of us coaches have taken this advice ourselves? These are extremely compelling words. They tell us we must step out of our comfort zone each and every day if we wish to excel. And while we preach this to players constantly, it's also essential that coaches apply this into their own profession and lives.

Whether you are building a business, your own career, or a basketball program, stepping out of your comfort zone is vital to success.

So how can we apply this to basketball coaching? I've outlined 3 ways: (1) Setting goals, (2) Learning something new every day, (3) Stop dwelling on the past.

Set goals

Whether it's in-season or off-season, it's always a good time to set goals. Maybe one of these goals is big, like winning a state title, or maybe it is smaller like getting past the first round of playoffs next season. Regardless of what it is, write it down and tell the people around you about it. Tell your family, your friends, your coworkers, your players, and your program. Making your goal public will help hold yourself accountable.

Have you wrote your goal down yet? If not, do so now…

Now ask yourself, “Will I be able to hit my goal if I do everything the same way as I did last season?”

If you're being honest with yourself the answer is probably no. In order to hit our goals we all must try new things and feel uncomfortable.

Learn something new every day

You have to learn something new every day if you hope to perfect your craft. Luckily in today's day and age we have the knowledge of the world in our pockets. Chances are, others have attained your goals in the past. Better yet, they've probably shared their roadmap to success. Spend at least 10 minutes a day learning.

Not sure where to start? Here are some of our favorite basketball coaching resources online - and most of these are 100% free! Even if it's just a little nugget of information that you pick up on every day, it could be the difference between drawing up the the perfect play in an end-of-game situation or not.

The best coaches understand that while they may be extremely knowledgeable, they also have plenty of room to grow. This may not be a comfortable thing to admit or pursue, but stepping outside your comfort zone can open up entirely new learning experiences.


Stop dwelling on the past

If you've made mistakes, guess what? You're human. Learn from your mistakes and more forward. Keep your head up and your eyes trained on your goal. Remind yourself why you initially started coaching. I guarantee there's not a coach out there that hasn't made a mistake in practice, in games, or off the court as well. 

Is there a particular game or coaching decision that haunts you? We've all been there. While it may be uncomfortable to think about it, it may be even more uncomfortable to let it go. But it's time. Don't think of it as a failure, but as a learning experience. Some of the greatest coaches of all-time had to go through many "learning experiences" before reaching their goals and finding their sucess. 

Every once in a while pull out that goal you wrote down and review your progress. If you're nervous and feel somewhat stressed, it probably means you're invested and on the right track. Keep moving, believe in yourself, empower those around you, and grind it out.


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