Saturday, 30 April 2016

Why you should play on team sports

This is called a ruck, it happens when the play stops.
All my life I have been active. I played team sports such as basketball, soccer, and rugby.

I don't want to bore you to death and talk about sport statistics or where and when I played sports.

Instead I am going to tell you what it has done for me and explain to you how essential it is to be on team sports. I am not discounting individual sports, because those are important as well.

Playing team sports has laid out the foundation for my humanity in the workplace. Let me tell you how.

To be a good leader you must work well with others. Yes this may sound cheesy, but you must be in unison with whom you play with to be a top performer in a league.

It sometimes may be hard to notice when watching professionals play because you are to focused on the individual, however if you have played before than you understand that the best teams play flawlessly and to do that they must trust each other.

They run, think, and breathe as one. Sportsmanship is built naturally when playing on team sports. What is sportsmanship? Ethics, respect, fellowship. Those are all traits that become essential for your core character.

The sense of accomplishment you get from scoring is overwhelming. Having the support and encouragement of your team makes you feel like you belong. It boosts your levels of serotonin, and makes you want to continue to do better.

It's the same in business. When you get something accomplished you continuously want that dose of serotonin to rush through your body.

The key is to celebrate your accomplishment. After playing on team sports the norm would be to get together after the game to proclaim about how things were done, to laugh and have fun together. We tend to overlook this in the workplace after a win, this is one critical mistake that we make.

In your workplace you keep on going and you discount your performance. You don't even stop to think about why you should acknowledge your win. What is the point?

The point is to give you a sense of direction and purpose. The point is to measure your success and remember why you are doing what you're doing, and most importantly it is to make you feel good.

Even small wins are worth celebrating.

I am not going to sit here and brag to you about how I was chosen to be captain of my basketball and rugby team, I never understood why I was made captain. I think it is because I played with commitment and was able to communicate and coordinate with my team.

I love sports, and you should too. You are never too old to play, it is so good for your health not just physically but mentally as well. Sports improve your concentration, mood, sleep habits, they boost your self confidence, remember the part I talked about after scoring.

So If you lose does it suck to play team sports? No.

Losing is fundamental for growth. When you lose you learn a great deal about yourself, your team, and how you can improve. Winning is not as good of a lesson as losing is.

So can you see how this can all relate to business and the workplace? I hope by now I don't need to reiterate everything I said and put it into business terms. Every single thing that you take away from sports it matters and can relate to business and the workplace.

Remember the earlier you get started in team sports the stronger you will build all those things I talked about in this post, again not to say that it is bad to play in individual sports. We can save that for another post.

One thing I didn't talk about is the downside of sports. Injury. Yes it can make you stronger, but it also can make you depressed, lower your confidence and physically disable you. However don't let this intimidate you, because you take precaution when playing.

The worst injury in sports happened to me recently when I was playing basketball and thought I broke my ankle. Now that is a pretty good statistic considering I played for 20 years and have never had anything worse than a badly sprained ankle.

Another thing that I want to mention before I wrap this up is that I also recently wanted to join a men's soccer league. Again not to brag, but I find I adapt very easy when I play sports and I love playing competitively.

However I was bewildered when I came for try outs, for those who don't know what that means, it is to see if you make the cut to be on the team, and to sort out your position. Well I barely made the cut, that's a nice way of putting it, to be honest I sucked. Has all those years of staying active done nothing for me, have I lost?

Let me tell you my self confidence dropped like a building being imploded for demolition. I was so discouraged that I didn't even want to go back to end the try outs let alone to continue to play soccer at all. At the beginning I looked around and thought to myself that these guys are no better than me.

Well that was a terrible mistake. They were better. Much better. Because this is what they do, they practice and play. Here I thought I could come in after playing some drop in co-ed games and performing well that I would do the same with experienced players.

My girlfriend who I have mentioned many times in my posts has given me the encouragement to not discount myself because I have come to play with professionals, instead give myself a pat on the back and to continue practicing. With anything you practice deliberately you become a master.

Playing on team sports has been beneficial in such that I developed my people skills which became an asset to growth in business, as well my self-confidence and my health.

What you choose to do with this information is up to you.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

To be continued....

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