Peter Nugent: Become part of the outcome

“MOST people don’t want to be part of the process; they just want to be part of the outcome. But the process is where you figure out who is worth being part of the outcome,” Prof. Damien Hughes.

Earlier this week the above quote flashed up on my phone screen and after reading it once, twice and anywhere up to 10 times since it has remained etched on my brain. In essence it simply translates as – everyone wants the glory but not everyone is prepared to put in the sacrifice required to attain success.

Whether it be as a coach or player, right now your club season is ramping up into its crescendo. The leagues are concluding and championship is on the horizon, the number of collective team sessions remaining now are dwindling and the bulk of the physical preparation has been completed.

This is now down to specifics, tactical awareness, physical execution of the basic components of your game-plan and required skill sets. It’s remaining mentally sharp, not over thinking and still turning up with a smile on your face and enjoying the team environment and the camaraderie that it can bring. It should always be a release from the pressures that come with work ,education and family life.

There is a multitude of strands that make up what might be deemed as ideal GAA club player preparations, given that we all have bills to pay and other external influences running congruently with this often-fruitless passion.

It is worth noting some of the extras required of players in 2021.

• Did you watch the game back and do your own analysis?

• Are you evaluating your own performance through note taking in training and games?

• Did you get the required sleep and nutrition in post-game?

• Did you get your active recovery session in the day after the game?

• Are you completing the additional skillshooting sessions?

• Are you on a physical development S&C pathway?

• Are you taking time to hone the mental performance development?

• Are you throwing your weight behind the club fundraising initiatives?

• Are you helping with club underage coaching?

Can the above all be fully absorbed by the majority of club players? I would guess no, but if you don’t comply with all the above it doesn’t necessarily mean you aren’t a committed player to your club’steam’s cause.

Can we really compare the time constraints on a 33-year-old parent of three kids to an 18-year-old fresher? The beauty of our amateur games is that everyone has their own affiliation to it, some people will be found at the club premises every waking minute and others simply have other interests.

If, as a player, you have applied yourself consistently in your preparation this season then you are as close to being on course for the business end of the year as you can possibly be and that will look different for each player.

The process is on-going and even when your involvement for this season ends, the chances are you will transition towards what next year has in store.

Ultimately only you will truly know how invested you have been in your team’s journey to date. Those that have gone all out will feel either the acute pain of defeat or the extreme elation of winning, and for those that didn’t, don’t get upset by the results you didn’t get with the work you didn’t do.

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