Monday, November 26, 2012

On Monkeys and Insanity

I need to start this post with a tremendous thank you for everyone's kind words regarding my last post. To everyone who tweeted, emailed, shared my post and to friends who told me that they enjoyed it - thank you very much.  I am touched, humbled, and flattered by your kindness.  Thank you for filling my bucket.

When I wrote my first post of the year I mentioned that I wouldn't be spending a lot of time summarizing our games. I did this for a few reasons.  For one, I am by no means a professional and my writing cannot compete with the journalists who cover us. For another, I'm far from impartial, and would really struggle if I had to talk about my opponents. The biggest reason is that after tough weekends I wouldn't really know what to say. How do you sit down at a computer and crank out 500 words on disappointment, frustration, or heartbreak? It would be hard to write and brutal to read. After two tough losses against Acadia I couldn't even write. After two more losses last weekend I just ignored the games and wrote about our locker room. But this week, after two very difficult losses I can't ignore it anymore. We are 0-6. Winless. In last place. There is a monkey on our back who is tightening his grip and refuses to be ignored any longer.

Everyday this monkey attacks our confidence. He tries to lure us away from self-discipline. He tries to steal our love for this game. And if we let him have his way we'll stop caring, we'll stop working, and we'll lose sight of our goals.

Let me be really clear: losing sucks. It sucks. It doesn't just make you sad, it's more complicated than that. You're angry, disappointed, ashamed, and embarrassed. You regret bad decisions and replay your mistakes over and over again in your head. It hurts, in your body, mind, and spirit. But this pain is useful. The pain of losing reminds us that the pain of workouts isn't nearly as bad as we think it is. The big problem is if we begin to tolerate losing, if the sting after the sixth loss doesn't hurt as much as the first. That's when you know you're in trouble, and that's when the monkey wins.

Coach Speedy tells us that 'insanity' can be defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Something clearly isn't working on our team. I mean it when I say that I love my team, but we just aren't getting the job done on the court. We've clearly hit a wall and we can either continue to bash our heads against it or we can get creative; we can change something up, and experiment with ways to go under, over, or around the wall.  I don't have the solution, but we all know that something isn't working.

For our supporters who are reading this, thank you for sticking with us while we are struggling. I have seen my team do great things and I believe we will get there again. If it is any consolation I want you to know that the sting of losing is still there, and the sixth loss didn't hurt any less than the first - it hurt exponentially more.

We know that our season isn't off to a great start but we aren't giving up. We will get creative and we will shake off this monkey. We are committed to fixing our mistakes and moving forward. This week we are clenching our jaws, pushing our limits, and raising our bar.


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