Monday, February 14, 2011

When The Light Switch Comes On.....

I've never been the fastest learner.  In thinking about many of my past experiences, it seems to take me some time to absorb lessons and apply them in every thing that I do, including officiating.  From thinking about it, there's two reasons I can think of for this.

One reason is that I did not open myself to learn from all of my experiences, whether they were good or bad.   I was quite self conscious of mistakes and that prevented me from analyzing stuff as much as I should have.

The second reason is that I did not get counsel from people on things.  Even if I knew something was wrong, I would take the approach that I could fix it myself when instead I should have sought assistance.   Again, it was probably being a little self conscious to ask people for assistance.

These things got magnified last year when I ran into a tough work situation.  The situation forced me to evaluate a lot of things and I think it helped me gain confidence at my regular job but also a great many other things.

As my high school officiating season comes to a close, I noticed a few changes in myself this year.  One is that I am analyzing situations before, during and after the game.   I have taken a great amount of time talking to my partners throughout games and talked about various things that have occurred.  In the past, I was not quite as game aware and spent a lot of time shooting the breeze rather than focusing on the game.

The other thing is I have sought out advice from other referees.  It all started in late 2010 when I worked some adult league games with two veterans that I normally don't work with in high school games.  Since I was working with them, I just started talking to them and asking questions.   This trend has continued to the point where I try to absorb anything useful from any official I work with.

It's funny that I talk about this now.  I just remembered why I had started officiating youth volleyball back in 2008.  I wanted to be put into new and uncomfortable lessons so I could learn from them as I had felt I had stagnated in basketball.  I think I finally got what I wanted.

The funny thing about me?  When the light switch turns on, I put a lot of effort into improving.  This could apply to my work, hobbies and other things.   So while I made some small improvements for myself this year, I see a lot of work ahead.  Yet, unlike previous years, I feel I have a road map of what I need to work on and look to come back strong for the 2011-2012 high school season.

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