AthleticsBasketballCoachingLeadershipMotivationSuccess

A White Rapper, A Roided Russian, Jamaican Bobsledders, and Girls Basketball

By February 17, 2017 No Comments
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Do you ever recall being scared to do something?

Has fear ever taken a hold of you?

Good, glad I’m not the only one who said yes to the first two questions.

Have you ever stared an obstacle, challenge, or opponent in the face and given it all you had?

How’d it feel? Pretty great, right?

As our team entered the final weeks of the regular season and geared up for district play we’ve shared several film clips with our players. The clips we shared can be used with any team and in setting. Some of them you may laugh at, but hear me out. I think you can use them with your workplace, too.

“His palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy

There’s vomit on his sweater already, mom’s spaghetti”

In the classic song Loose Yourself, Enimem describes what the character “B Rabbit” feels while on stage. The moment gets to him. In his mind, he’s ready. But at first the bright lights, loud crowd, and intimidating opponent are too much. However, B Rabbit finally faces his fears and destroys his opponent in the film’s final battle rap.

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Why show this to a basketball team?

I showed it to our team before we played the four-time defending conference champions, on the road, and after they had already beaten us by 30 points. I wanted my young team to realize they beat themselves the first game. I wanted them to understand they have what it takes inside of them. Sometimes you just have to look inside and let fear go. We played scared the first game, but not the second game. We played with heart and gave tremendous effort. We didn’t back down. It was a 7-point game with two minutes left in the third quarter. We lost, but we found the mentality we need to play with.

So, why’d you have to use an Enimem movie clip to make that point? (old lady voice) Because it’s relevant. And in order to get kids attention today you have to speak their language. I’ll tell you one thing, all eyes were on the screen and they got the message.

How can this be used at my work?

We’re all human. We all have fears. Some use it as a motivator and some allow it to paralyze them. Use this clip to challenge veteran employees who’ve become complacent. Heck, if you’ve failed to take a risk for fear of what could possibly go wrong, challenge yourself. I guarantee every person in your office can find a time in their life or career that relates to what B Rabbit goes through. Challenge your peers to face their fears and overcome.

“You cut him. You hurt him. You see, he’s not a machine. He’s a man!”

If you know me at all, you know of my love for the Rocky films. The quote above is from Rocky IV when Rocky is fighting Ivan Drago in the most hostile of environments, Soviet Russia…on Christmas…after the death of his best friend Apollo (RIP Master of Disaster).

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Why show this to a basketball team?

Last Friday we played this year’s conference leader, a two-time defending district champ, for the second time. During our first meeting we played tough for about a half. We lost by 30. We let their best player do what she wanted. We let her take it to us.

In Rocky IV there is this mystique and awe (which we come to find out is enhanced through Drago’s performance enhancing drugs…if you think about Drago was sadly ahead of the times) surrounding the Russian fighter. Even Rocky’s wife (RIP Adrian) tells him it’s suicide and says, “You can’t win!” In order to win Rocky has to be willing to lay it ALL on the line.

We challenged our girls to step up to Drago (other team’s best player) and take the fight to them. We told our girls they’re human too, they’re not a machine. Our girls needed to come out and hurt them, strike the first blow. And they did. We scored the first four points of the game. This team (18-3 class 4 team, we are smaller at class 3) got a game. They played their top players the entire game (wasn’t the case the first time). It went from a 30-point blowout, to a 13-point game. We gave them all they could handle, and our girls found toughness in proving she’s not a machine.

How can this be used at my work?

Again, be creative. Find what fits and is applicable for your team. However, here’s how I could see it being used. Rocky IV, especially the Drago fight, is a testament to the human spirit. (Remember, Rocky’s speech after the fight effectively ended the Cold War) It’s what made the franchise so successful. I would use this clip and challenge my business team not to think small.

The only limits we have are the one’s we impose upon ourselves. Why can’t you double your business? Impossible is nothing. Rocky is great to encourage and reinforce the power of belief. If you believe in your team, and they believe in themselves, anything is possible with hard work.

“Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme, get on up, it’s bobsled time!”

Who else wanted to be an olympic bobsledder after watching Cool Runnings as a kid? Oh, just me?! Yeah right, c’mon you know you loved that movie! This movie was a great true underdog story. Just as the Jamaicans are about to win an olympic medal disaster hits. Their bobsled overturns and all hope of an olympic medal is lost. But, they don’t give up. They carry their bobsled across the line and finish the race.

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Why show this to a basketball team?

Basketball season is a marathon, it’s not a sprint. Last night marked the end of our regular season. We used this clip and challenged our girls to finish the race. We didn’t begin this journey just to casually show up and go through the motions. When you’re name is attached to something, you give it your absolute best until the very end.

We’ve put ourselves in a great position to make a run at a district title next week. We told the girls they’d be doing themselves an injustice by not finishing their race strong. We’ve had up and downs. We’ve dealt with adversity. And now we’re ready for the postseason. However, we can’t just show up. We have to have the mindset that we’re going to finish what we set out to do. And that’s to win a district title for the first time in 25 years at our school.

So, if we’re going to do that, we have to finish our regular season race strong, and carry that over to next week.

How can I use this at my work?

You can’t. You don’t have any Jamaican bobsledders at your office. You know Bob and Mary would break something if they tried their hand at. (Just joking, just joking). Again be creative. Here’s how I would use it. I think the natural correlation is the fourth quarter of the business cycle. Use this clip to challenge your employee’s to finish the year strong. It’s easy around the holidays to close the fourth quarter on cruise control. Don’t let that mindset creep into your office.

You could also use this during the middle of the year. Adversity is going to hit. You may lose a client. A big account could say no. Personal problems could arise. Whatever the case, challenge your teammates to get back up and finish the race strong!

Hope you liked this week’s message! If you did, please share it with someone who could benefit from it.

As always, thanks for reading, have a great week, and be an RGP today!

~Kyle

Coach Elmendorf is available to speak to your team, group, or organization.