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Issue 187 - The More Concerned We Become Over the Things We Can't Control, the Less we Will Do With the Things we Can Control

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 4 Issue 187
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



When Coach was asked what would you say would be one of the most important things your Father taught you? He replied:
I think that possibly, never try to be better than somebody else. Always understand that you'll never know a thing that you don’t learn from someone else but never try to be better than somebody else, but never cease trying to be the best you can be. I can remember him saying that’s under your control. The other isn’t and if you get too engrossed, involved and concerned in regard to the things that you have no control, it will have a negative effect on the things over which you have or should have control.
This philosophy controlled how Coach dealt with the past, as reflected in this key idea:
A mistake is valuable if you do four things with it: recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it.
For Coach Wooden, the past was not something to worry about, but rather learn from and move on.
This philosophy also controlled how Coach dealt with the present as reflected in this key idea:
Do not permit what you cannot do to interfere with what you can do.
Coach liked to say:
We change what we can, but if we get too concerned, involved and engrossed in circumstances over which we have no control or can't change, those circumstances are going to have a negative impact on events and outcomes we can control.
This philosophy also controlled how Coach dealt with the future. In his book with Steve Jamison, The Essential Wooden: a Lifetime of Lessons on Leaders and Leadership, Coach commented on the difference between worry and concern:
"Worry" is fretting about the future. "Concern" is figuring out future solutions. When you are "concerned," you're going to analyze and determine where and how to improve. If you are "worried," you're just fretting that things won't turn out right regardless of what you do-wringing your hands and imagining bad things.
"Concern" leads to results; "worry" results in losing a good night's sleep.
For the past, the present and the future: Don’t worry about things you can’t control, act on those you can.

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman
Twitter: @woodenswisdom




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Application Exercise

Favorite Poetry


Little Boy Blue


The little toy dog is covered with dust,
But sturdy and stanch he stands;
And the little toy soldier is red with rust,
And his musket moulds in his hands.
Time was when the little toy dog was new,
And the soldier was passing fair;
And that was the time when our Little Boy Blue
Kissed them and put them there.
"Now, don't you go till I come," he said,
"And don't you make any noise!"
So, toddling off to his trundle-bed,
He dreamt of the pretty toys;
And, as he was dreaming, an angel song
Awakened our Little Boy Blue---
Oh! the years are many, the years are long,
But the little toy friends are true!
Ay, faithful to Little Boy Blue they stand,
Each in the same old place---
Awaiting the touch of a little hand,
The smile of a little face;
And they wonder, as waiting the long years through
In the dust of that little chair,
What has become of our Little Boy Blue,
Since he kissed them and put them there.

Eugene Field 






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