For the most part I prefer to let people around me take their time and figure out how to do things on their own. I take a step back and watch as they try to learn, using their own pace, through their own mistakes. I grew up with an intense amount of pressure to perform and there are days when I wish I could just shut down for awhile. I didn’t want to be that kind of pressure on others so I make a conscious effort not to burden them with expectations and scare them with punishments.
I do realize however that there are days when it’s the only option that could deliver results. When I started debating, I hated those 7 minutes that I had to talk about some country a thousand miles away from me about some issue I’ve never heard of. I’d stand up there like a moron, babbling for three minutes then I’d run back to my chair. I remember our coach asking me to do it over and over and over again until I got to seven minutes. It was the most excruciating and embarrassing 2 hours of my life. I thought, at that time, it was harsh. I was just starting and he already expected me to compete like a pro. How is that gonna happen? That’s not fair right? But it was, I can’t flake just because I’m new. It’s not a justification.
I’m happy he was so tough on me. If he wasn’t I would have found one excuse after another not to perform as well as everyone else. I owe him every single award, praise and opportunity I got after that.
I wish more people had the courage to do what he did. These days most mentors I meet care more about being liked by those they’re mentoring than actually making an impact no matter what it costs. Tough love isn’t always the solution but when it is, do it. It’s for their good more than it is for yours. What’s the point of being the NICE mentor/ coach/ trainer if they don’t grow and live up to their best ability because you didn’t push them enough?
For Daddy Tords, just because.