• Coach-ability

    Did a North U sailing trim and tactics course this weekend. 60+ participants, 30 volunteers, 20 boats and perfect weather (a miracle for our lake).

    We had 5 famous sailing coaches fly in from around the USA and Canada and they put it too us. It was great for a few reasons.

    Our boat won the races, that’s always nice. But how that happened was really interesting.

    The crew on my boat, all knew each other but had not sailed together. Sailing is really a symphony between all members of the crew, some good choices and luck to make your boat go fast.

    But the first thing we realized is, we have all developed different ‘short-hand’ practices on each of our boats, which crashed our symphony to the ground.

    There were some mild tense moments and then a magical thing happened. We were coach-able.

    We put our ego’s, stupidity, ignorance on the side and went about the business of getting better. We did what out coach told us. The boat went super fast and it was great.

    I got some greater understanding of some sailing principles. I got to watch Bill Galdstone (famous coach) teach adults, who most of us have sailed for 30 years, in a way that was fun, informative and really made us think a bit different. He build a platform, gave us a set of tools for us to figure it out and go fast. Very smart way to herd a bunch of sailors (as we know it all)

    We even got a new T-shirt design – That’s easy from here  – and most things are easy from the armchair, but get a few boats milling around and a tight start and the pressure goes up and good choices go down.

    Much like a lot of things in life.

    Lessons learned. Listen and try it, really try it, then try it some more. If a person who’s made a living doing “it” for 20+ years then try it. Forget that I (you) know better. Remember your mind will do all kinds of things to not really try it, as if it works then you’d be wrong and no one likes to be wrong. BUT!!! I’d rather be fast and wrong than “right” and slow.

    Learn to communicate to others in a way they can hear it as soon as possible. I know they should understand what the heck I am yelling at them but they don’t and we are still going slow.

    My ego is going to get hurt learning, my self worth will go up learning. The amount of each can depend on several things. Understanding you expect to find better ways of doing things. You are building on what you already knew, can help. But, in my opinion, your ego will still take a mild knock, as it’s job is to always be right.

    There is a saying: we file, sort or delete. We file new information with old information to be buried. We sort information with similar to look at later, much later. Or we just delete it mentally as it’s new and we don’t know where to file or sort it.

    That’s why learning is work, I (you) need to build new files and sort things differently and depending on the last time you learned it can be tough.

    Be gentle with yourselves, remind yourselves you are there to find out new, modified, different ways of doing “X”.

    Then get your team together and go fast.

    Be Well,
    Ward Willison
    Kelowna Acupuncture & Other Natural Therapies