The Ghost of Environment

While I was Writing The Ethical Coach Leader,
I Recounted An Experience I Had
With My Own Coaching.

I told a group of listeners at one point, “I am here to remind you about the social and cultural forces that have shaped your life.” This is because I believe that these factors play a vital role in determining who and what we become. W. Clement Stone may have said it best when he said, “Be careful the environment you choose for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose for you will become like them.”

The fact is that the environment we surround ourselves with shapes the people we become. It is important that we are conscious of the choices we make regarding our environment so as not to wander down the wrong path. The right people in our lives can help us achieve success; the wrong ones can ensure our failure.

This is an especially important lesson for young people to learn. Andy Stanley, a noted youth pastor, said, “The people who can ruin your life today will not be in your life five years from now.” To a great extent, this is true. While we may all have one friend that we have kept since high school or even grade school, the fact is that most of us move on. We find new friends, have new experiences and move away from the people who were once important to us. Only family truly stands the test of time; friends are usually situational, and although we may retain affection for certain friends, those who are in our lives every day are the ones that influence our thoughts and actions.

Therefore, it is very important for us to maintain the right environment by carefully controlling who is around us and imparting that lesson to our students. A coach maintains a good environment by engaging players who are positive, hardworking and goal-oriented. This environment will encourage other players, even when they are down on their luck, to push through to success. By creating the right environment, you as a coach are setting your players up for success. If you create the wrong environment, you are setting them up for failure.

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