Each session is simply preparation for the next one.
I love this paradigm. It’s so simple. yet so powerful.
As a coach, it means:
Each session is not your only coaching opportunity.
You don’t have to “fix” everything in that one session. You are simply preparing for improvement.
Each session is about progression.
This defines your coaching. Your role in each session is simply to show the athlete where this next step is and help them prepare to get there.
Each session doesn’t have to be a win.
Success isn’t linear. You know that through your own experiences as an athlete and a business owner. The same is true for coaching. It’s less about “winning” each session, and more about making sure the athlete is moving in the right direction and preparing themselves for consistent future wins.
Each session is a stepping stone.
To traverse a path with stability and speed, you need to be constantly looking ahead. This means preparing and planning ahead, and helping the athlete navigate that pathway.
Each session is about stability as well as movement.
Both physically, and metaphorically. It’s the same as movement coaching. Forward movement for any given athlete often means helping the athlete stabilising where they are first – preparing for upcoming progress.
Each session doesn’t have to provide an immediate success.
Athletic success involves risk and variety. That means exploring these with the athlete, and sometimes ending up on a longer routes or dead-ends. And that’s just part of coaching and preparing the athlete to become resilient to impending challenges.
Each session is part of an incomplete picture.
Each session doesn’t have to be perfect. Because there is no such thing. The here-and-now pressure is off. A focus on creating perfect individual sessions can be detrimental to big-picture goals. Each session is a piece of a bigger picture, and preparation for bigger things.
Each session is about optimisation, not maximisation.
Helping the athlete to give his or her best in each session, not squeezing the most out of each session.
You can encourage the same perspective of your athletes. This will help to minimise ego-driven sessions. When the goal of the session becomes the potential of the next one, perspective shifts from squeezing every last drop out of the session to understanding how to use sessions to their future advantage.
Creating a paradigm of future potential also creates purpose around the session. And that purpose is future potential itself, not current perfection. It’s not about today. It’s about tomorrow, and being prepared for tomorrow. It’s not just about tomorrow’s session either, but whatever tomorrow may bring.
And if we can prepare our athletes for tomorrow, we are truly coaching them.