Put yourself in Coach

I’m trying to impress my “Coach” with my four inch vertical. To be fair, I’m wearing jeans. I try.

Around my house full of men who coach and play football, I’ve grown a thick skin over the years. Whenever I attempt to jump into the postgame “break it down” talk, or add my perspective on football recruiting, I often hear comments like:

“Mom, you don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Seriously, that’s not even close to right.”

“Oh my word, did you just say that?”

“We love you, but you need to stay in your lane.”

It sounds cruel, but don’t feel sorry for me. My men are good guys and they’re right. I honestly know very little about football when compared to their collective knowledge. But because I’m practically living in a locker room 24/7, it’s a little impossible for someone who talks as much as I do to stay out of the conversation. Most of the time, I keep talking until something gets a reaction, even if that reaction is eye rolls.

My football analysis could be described as “Mary Poppins talks X’s and O’s.” It’s laughable. Sometimes, I have to laugh at myself.

I confess that I admire the competitive drive and passion that my guys have for the sport they love. I understand why it’s no laughing matter to them. I’m also admittedly a little envious of my husband’s role as the “Coach.” Deep down, we all want to be that no-nonsense expert at something, right? In a phenomenon that only happens in sports, I think it’s interesting that once a person coaches a sport, even if for just one season, that person will forever be referred to as “Coach” by other coaches.

So what do I have to do to earn that title? Even though my family sarcastically calls me “Coach” all the time, they have no idea that I’ve actually been coaching for years.

Hey, I’m good at things! We’re all good at something. I’ve come to accept that while I may never be a member of their intense little football fraternity, I’m already a coach in my own right. We all are. We just need to be reminded sometimes.

Here’s my coaching resume:

I’m the coach of two needy cats.
I’m the coach of planning the most unpredictable vacations.
I’m the coach of challenging the status quo.
I’m the coach of networking.
I’m the coach of embedding stories in the hearts of my children.
I’m the coach of organizing family time.
I’m the coach of fun and mischief with my friends.
I’m the coach of stretching a dollar and finding treasures in the trash.
I’m the coach of living room karaoke.
I’m the coach of all the holidays.
I’m the coach of raising boys.
I’m the coach of finding the right words.

It’s incredibly empowering to recognize and believe in our unique value. It’s essential to embrace what we can do like no one else.

What can you do? What team would fall apart without you? What characteristics and talents have made you a coach?

When you discover OR re-discover these gifts, be thankful! They are the best part of you. While it’s a worthy goal to learn and pursue new things, it’s also okay to sit still and thrive where you are.

We have no business trying to be an expert at everything. That’s a recipe for neverending frustration.

This lesson alone may be the hardest one I’ve had to learn over and over again. It’s the lesson that just keeps giving, and humbling me constantly. When we stop bossing all the people, we can step back and get a glimpse of the boss in the mirror. This boss is the best one you’ll ever have. God gave you everything you need. He designed YOU to lead yourself first before leading anything or anyone else.

The game plan is simple. When you’re winning at being the best version of YOU, then you’re unbeatable, Coach.

On vacation, I’m in charge. This trip out West is one epic example of me as the “Coach of Vacations” (pictured here at Mariposa Grove in Yosemite National Park). We stayed in a teepee, we stayed in a dome, and we stayed at a hostel where some German guy in a sweater offered me an onion for breakfast. My boys called it dirty summer camp. #winning