I recently posted a question to our Facebook page asking what you, or your son or daughter, has learned through playing hockey.
The responses covered a lot of the same things that I talk about in this blog and things that I also completely agree with.
So often, we get wrapped up in every little situation that comes up over the course of a season that we can lose sight of all the amazing life lessons we learn from the game.
I know I’m just as guilty of it as I’m sure most of you are.
But once you get asked the question, or take a few minutes to gain some perspective and think about all that you get from the game, the results are pretty amazing.
For me personally, I think I have learned more from being a part of the game than any other aspect of my entire life.
Hockey has taught me about work ethic, commitment, working with a team and being a good teammate, resilience, discipline, leadership, winning and losing… The list could literally go on and on.
It’s honestly hard for me to reflect on any other part of my life where I have been impacted, or learned, more. Plain and simple, hockey has helped build and define my character.
Even just writing this post has forced me to have some perspective about how lucky I am to be able to still be a part of such an awesome game. And to hopefully be able to continue to pass along those same amazing lessons to the players I coach and interact with is what it's all about.
And while I learned about all those things listed above as a player, I continue to learn just as much, if not more, now as a coach.
I think the real cool thing for me is that when I was a player it was learning and trying to figure out who I was as a person and a player. And now that I’m a coach, I feel comfortable and confident about who I am as a man, but instead have the responsibility to try and help guide other players down the right path. To be a positive influence in their life and make an impact for the right reasons.
The game has taught me, especially recently, that not every decision is an easy one, in fact, most are hard. But at the end of the day, if you’re coming from the right place and can look yourself in the mirror at the end of the day then that’s all part of leading and making an impact.
I think too often we forget that making an impact in the right way involves making hard decisions and tough calls. Sometimes the biggest, and best, impact you can make is by going against the grain and being willing to take the heat to do the right thing. Hockey has taught me all of this.
It’s amazing to think that such a simple game can be so powerful and have such an impact.
I know for me I wouldn’t be the person I am today without hockey. It’s truly one of the most rewarding, and humbling, parts of my life.
How has hockey impacted you? What life lessons have you learned from the game? Feel free to comment below and keep the conversation going.