2018 Softball

This year I was the coach of our softball team and let me tell you,
it was not easy. The biggest challenge is to manage 15 different
personalities. Everyone has an opinion on who should play and how things should be ran. And when certain people don’t get their way, chaos ensues.
(COACHING PRISON SOFTBALL)

I often asked myself, ”Why the heck am I doing this?”
At times it seemed like the effort just wasn’t worth it.
Remember my post ”MOTIVATION IS LOW, TEMPTATION IS HIGH?”
That’s just one example.

Despite all the drama, I remained focused on the goal, and that was to win a Championship. I used all the adversities to strengthen my resolve and develop good character, despite all the negative influences.

About half way through the season, three guys quit because
they were all buddies and only one of them earned playing time.
The other two were on the bench. They went to the Rockies, a rival team.
They also talked bad about me, saying things like I play favoritism,
and I’ll never win a Championship, and I don’t know what I’m doing,
and blah blah blah.

I responded with kindness as I continued to treat them with respect.
I wished them luck on their new team and told them I understood
why they transfered to the Rockies.

Two weeks later we played the Rockies.
Phil, our 2nd baseman, didn’t like the lineup I chose for that game.
He made such a fuss that I finally said, ”Fine, you make a lineup”.

We lost that game 6 to 12. It was our first loss
of the season. If the loss wasn’t bad enough, I had to
listen to the mouths that quit my team and joined the team that just beat us.
Saying things like, ”That’s why we quit your team and joined a better team”.

That loss was like throwing gas on the fire that
was burning inside me. I took back control of the team
and explained to the guys that I’m the coach and I’ll be making all the decisions. I then cut two guys and brought on one new guy.
That caused a little dramma, but I didn’t care. All I care about is winning.

We finished the regular season with just that one loss.
We went undefeated under my leadership, a point I brought up several times
whenever someone questioned why I was doing this or doing that.

We entered the playoffs as the #3 seed and smashed
everyone who got in our way. We beat the Rockies when it mattered
and ended their season. I had all our players buying in to my system
and supporting my decisions. And I did so by cutting the negative attitudes
and hiring positive attitudes…even if that meant sacrificing talent.

We beat the defending Champs and won the 2018 Championship!

It felt so incredibly good. You have no idea!
Next year my top priority will be attitude over talent.
My team wasn’t the most talented team, but by the end
of the season we had great attitudes and everyone was supportive.
And in the end, THATS what won us a Championship.

 

Steven Jennings

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Author: Steven & Suzie Jennings

She was raised as a Mormon, and he is a convict serving 43 years in prison. This blog offers a glimpse into two vastly different worlds that somehow came crashing together. Join them on their journey through prison life & married life.

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