One more letter from the DOC…

It is a late Friday afternoon and my Skypephone makes that familiar noise again. Somebody has just opened a chat with me. This time it is an old friend in coaching that has found the “hidden gem” of TED. Ever since countries came up with the idea that children should go to school, TED could be the biggest revolution in education. And in fact I would not be at all surprised if it is a lot more beneficial than the most cutting edge school system could ever be. At some of the most knowledgeable, insightful and inspiring speakers in the world are at your fingertips. And what they can deliver to you is simply astonishing. My friend on that Skype chat sent me on a journey through numerous lectures as the site (in true Youtube spirit of course) recognises what you watch and gives you suggestions on where to proceed. Before you know it you have had a full day’s education without leaving your desk or home.

What triggered my journey was a link to a speech by Coach John Wooden on the difference between winning and success. Wooden is the legendary basketball coach at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) that took his team to 10 National Championship titles during his last 12 years in the job. He was there for 27 years in total. Wooden’s lecture on TED is all about defining what is controllable and what is uncontrollable. It is full of priceless quotes such as ‘Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to do the best of which you are capable’ and it highlights what a fantastic life coach a sports coach can be. Coach Wooden has a university degree in English (as you can tell if you listen to his speech!) and there was no way that his players were going to get away with anything short of ‘the best that they could do’ in all aspects of life – school, sports or social life. He also said;

‘When you meet someone that doesn’t know the outcome, I hope they cannot see it on you’.

How good is that? What he refers to of course is how to go about being completely engaged in the process of what we are doing, rather than the (possible) outcome of it. If we do that well enough, all that other stuff can go on outside and it will take care of itself. If we do what we do to the best of our ability we of course have the best possibility to get the best outcome. In times of selection and competition this is a delicate nut to crack and every time a selection is made there are various issues to deal with. In golf, a Squad selection or not is always seen as quite a big thing as it relates to opportunities of coaching, warm weather training over the winter and a number of other advantages that come the way of the England players. Having said that, what we do know for sure is that selection or not won’t ever make a player. How a player deals with it will. Watch Coach Wooden on:

If you have started a journey on TED and have not yet come across Sir Ken Robinson then here is another one you need to watch. Born and raised in Liverpool, educated in London, Ken was a Professor of Education at the University of Warwick before moving to the United States and Los Angeles. Ken seems to have worked with just about everybody (governments, companies, high profile people) in trying to develop creativity, innovation and human resources and if this is what we have come to with his help – then you kind of do not want to know what the world would be like without him. ‘If you are not prepared to be wrong, you will never come up with anything original’. Amen! Find out for yourself on

Happy golfing,
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”
– Albert Einstein

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