Wednesday 21 November 2018

Staying at the Top

Those who have the capacity to stay at the top are driven not by reaching one particular goal but by satisfaction and pleasure that comes from doing things well.
The secret of success in sport is not to be distracted by the expectations and ambitions of others and be able to stay on track.
Two of the keys to staying at the top are an ability to keep an eye on what it is that made us good in the first place, and the need for coaches and managers to keep coaching and take nothing for granted.
The challenge of staying at the top is to continue with the core principles and values and to continue to keep being coached once you reach the top.
It’s no body else’s turn to be the best unless you let your standards slip, lose focus on the values that made you great and stop learning and growing as an athlete.
Complacency is: - “acceptance” that it’s someone else’s turn to succeed.- an “expectation” that it will be okay on the day.
You must prepare diligently for the contests ahead and have strategies for handling every possibility.
Doubts can be positive, by making us acutely aware of the need to work hard and follow our first 5 principles, but they can act negatively by eroding our confidence and dragging us into lethargy and inactivity.
The optimal state of doubt is one in which the task or opposition is respected, but not feared. An appropriate respect can stimulate us to be vigilant, sharp and prepare fully.
Those who practice excellence prepare thoroughly, learn from every source, work cooperatively and are resilient and flexible, will be able to manage doubt and fear.
Most, if not all, of these ideals contained in the summary are self explanatory. There is no doubt that what we do as cricket umpires is incredibly challenging when there is an automatic expectation that every time we walk out on the field, that there will be a faultless performance with no errors. The reality is that we do make mistakes, however, the concept of “staying at the top” demands that we treat preparation and making mistakes differently from the rest.
For quality outcomes in terms of performance, there needs to be quality inputs and processes. If you practice quality in everything that you do, then the quality outcomes will take care of themselves.
You will not get to the top and stay at the top on your own. Only by being a cooperative member of your team with your fellow umpires, coaches and managers will help you achieve. This means that support for each other in the team and upholding the values of the group and profession of cricket umpiring is paramount.
There is no way that you can stay at the top without ongoing training and learning. You need to develop good habits and routines that centre around the skills that got you to where you are and create new ones that will improve them. Avoiding complacency and practicing humility is another key that will prevent you from stagnating and having the expectations of the game or others passing you by. 

Courtesy of Simon Taufel 

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