The Old Man Story continues
Back at the end of August I posted a story in this space called The Old Man Story, (click on link here). I had done so because I had read about some players poor choices. I wrote that I have told this story for years, perhaps more years than I would like to admit. I used it in my book, “The Athlete within You” as well. I first heard the story from my soccer coach what has to be over 35 years ago. Usually I would make a joke here and say that I was maybe five when I heard it first, but that is just for fun. (I was 6). Anyway I have told this story to almost every athlete I have ever trained. I’ve told it to a lot of audiences and to the classes I’ve taught. I’m probably responsible for 5000+ people hearing this tale. It wasn’t my story and I doubt it was Coach Kelley’s, but I was happy to continue his tradition. This weekend I was struck by something that I didn’t see coming. My story may have come back to me.
As anyone reading my posts knows I was working with the Cheyenne Stampede all last week. Yes I did tell them the story of the old man the first day. That’s not what has struck me silent. Take a look at this picture below.
OK it’s an old tale, I get that. I have not talked to GM Mark Lantz about the banner. He put it up and he used it very movingly on my last day of training camp to inspire his team to make great choices. I’m very sure that he has heard or read of something similar over the years. But what if, just what if The Old Man Story stuck in the unconscious of a very young graduate student who took a sport psychology class at the University of Wyoming over a quarter century ago.
What if our words could move someone to use the same line to inspire young people to greatness and perhaps had its roots back then. Can we inspire generations, will these players one day challenge another group of young people after I’m gone. Pretty heady stuff. It’s likely just one of my day dreams, of course that’s what day dreams are for.
I told the players I have one main purpose. To help them with their mental game so they will have the skills to reach for their dreams. Funny how it may have started before any of them were born. Just a thought.