So a horse walks into the bar, sits down and the bartender comes over and says, “So why the long face?”
Think about the challenge in this way; the distance between expectations and reality is disappointment. Our sport relies so heavily on personal responsibility. That is one of several things that make it so compelling. You don’t rely on anyone to throw you the ball so you can score. No one else’s fumble costs you the victory.
Your swimming is all about you and your willingness to accept this fact…it is you.
When your expectations don’t mesh with your reality the gap is measured in disappointment. Want less disappointment, then either change your expectations or your reality.
A word of caution…discouragement means literally lack of courage. Few competitive swimmers lack courage. What most lack, at some point in their development, is the understanding about the direct connection between input and output. This is the personal responsibility angle.
Our greatest power in life is the power to choose. And with that power comes the responsibility to be 100% accountable to ourselves for our progress or lack thereof.
The long face we see at swim meets comes more often than not from the gap between a swimmer’s expectation and her/his reality; the bigger the gap the longer the face.
So you decide what you want – expectations – and what your reality is – your training, it’s frequency and consistency; your racing, how often and intense; your maturity – how you roll with the ups and downs of this sport…and then you own your swimming.
The choice is yours. How wonderful that is. No winner would want it any other way. I choose. I work. I get the reward…sometimes sooner, other times later, but I get it.
Coaches, parents and teammates are here to assist…in the end it is you who gets the credit…and we like that relationship a whole lot.