I was reminded yesterday of a video that I saw of a dog spending hours chasing its tail. For hours on end, this dog would try to reach around and grab its own tail and eventually would become so dizzy that all the owners could do was howl and laugh, themselves. I was amazed at two things. First, the fact that the dog could focus for so long, chasing after something that it was probably not going to get (since the tail wasn’t getting any longer) was almost something to marvel at. Second, I was amazed at the fact that the dog didn’t realize that it couldn’t get the tail.
But, that’s how it is with us sometimes. We spend a very long time chasing after things that are out of reach. Well, let me add a question to that. Is it that they are out of reach or is it that we are just trying to get to them in the wrong way? Is the focus getting it done on our own or just getting it done?
It’s funny that the dog couldn’t see that the way it was going just wasn’t going to work. And we often can’t see that either because we are caught up inside of this thing that we are doing. We are on the inside. We laugh at the dog, but it would be the same scene you tried to look at your own back. If you have ever tried, you realize that your neck only turn so far before it becomes pretty difficult to go any further. In fact, on your own, looking at your back would be impossible. You need help. You need a mirror. You need someone else. You need someone who can look objectively at the entire you and tell you what they see. You need a mentor, a partner, a coach.
Some people hear the word coach and they immediately think of sports. They think that the only reason a coach exists is to tell players on a team what they should be doing. That definitely IS what they do in a team setting. But more specifically, they are someone on the OUTSIDE of the court who can offer guidance about what they see and maybe the best way to approach it. On an individual level, they can share a picture of what it is that you are doing currently and more specifically help facilitate your success.
You can try to watch your own back. But, it’s much easier just to have someone else help you do it, especially someone who is dedicated to your success.
What is your experience about coaches and mentors? How have they helped you? Leave your comments below.