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Like A Dog

Until we meet again.

This will be my last blog post for a while. Hockey is going to get started again soon and focus is about to shift.

I loved writing them all. These small musings were my therapy sessions helping me through challenging times. If you got pulled in to read them, thank you for coming along.

This is a good time to escape.
Escape what’s on TV.
Escape what’s happening all around the nation.

The world feels like one big fire hydrant….

My goal is to make you feel good with this post. Time to get a little sappy.

So here goes.

Over the last few years I’ve heard the term ‘Like A Dog’ used in a very negative way. Sometimes by people in very powerful leadership positions. The term is used too much. In the wrong way.
The negative connotation is a mistake.

A dog makes a house a home.

We are all praying that things settle down. We all want society to get back to some kind of normal. Everyone wants that.

But I know two souls very well who don’t want that entirely.

Our two dogs Molly and Toby.

One of the greatest joys during these challenging times was to experience them fully.

They forced me think about unconditional love.
Just what we hockey coaches are all very comfortable with discussing….but here goes.

I would guess that Toby is a staunch Republican. Molly is a central to left leaning Democratic….but over these couple of months that divide never came up.
This blog has never ventured into politics that much nor did they during this pandemic. That was a lesson in itself.

What did come up was their concern for:

Their number of walks….
Their number of treats….
Their amount of fetch time…
And most importantly, the number of times they could place a soft head on your arm….when you were feeling down.
The worse the news got…..the closer they got.
Time after time, whenever someone in our home was down, I swear the dogs went to them. They sensed discomfort. They went to check in and be there for them. Offering up a warm heart.

My dogs made me realize that we two-legged folk don’t show that unconditional love enough to each other. Now more than ever we should learn from them.

Work is going to start again…hockey is going to start again….but did we learn to love better during all this???
Like a dog?

I hope so.

Our furry souls don’t want this time to end. They love being close.

As bad as it has been, maybe parts of it shouldn’t end.
Moving forward maybe we need to learn to slow down, look at life, and see more love.
Right at your feet.

Our dogs will be here when hockey and work starts again, but right now they don’t want us to forget this time.
To forget to cherish the limited time we have together.
To take things for granted.
To forget that a game of fetch is more than bringing back the ball.
It’s about bringing back the love.

When my dogs look at me I can tell that they know the inevitable is coming. Normal at some point will return to their world.
Their eyes also tell me that when it does, they want us to stay safe. To get going with ‘dogged’ determination.
Their eyes also tell me that they hope I learned from all this.

That I learned to live better.
To be closer.
To love better….
To act a bit more……. ‘Like a dog’…..

Thank you all for the kind words and the feedback you gave me on my writing during these few weeks. The positive feedback was dog on good! It meant a lot and helped me a great deal.

I know there wasn’t a whole lot of hockey content. But that’s ok. Hockey’s coming back! Better than ever.

Until we blog again…

Thank you.

Coach Huff

Bloom Where You’re Planted

“I was open to pain and crossed by the rain and I walked on a crooked crutch
I strolled all alone through a fallout zone and came out with my soul untouched.”

Bruce Springsteen, Growing Up

My twelve-year-old niece Lily is a kindred soul.

I’m amazed at how we mentally connect.
A few summers ago we even founded a summer book club together. But that’s for another blog….

Last week she was out for a walk with her Mom. She took this picture and sent it to me with the quote, “Bloom where you’re planted.” Nothing more. Just that.

“Bloom Where You’re Planted.”

Coincidentally it was the same day I started working on my mini-garden in my yard.
Another new venture.
Her message made me think about growth.
Growth in these times.

Maybe it was her use of the phrase ‘where you’re planted.’
We certainly have been planted over the last couple of months.

We all go from the stage of growing up…to growing older….and then hopefully growing wiser.
I thought about her being just twelve…..and my being…..well much more than twelve.
Are we both being forced to grow during this time?
The economy is not growing…..but are we?

Are we growing as humans….as a society….are we learning lessons?

Are my sons growing from this….by going through this?
Are they growing more empathetic for affected families?
Are they growing more caring towards neighbors in need?
Are they growing more sympathetic to those who have lost loved ones?
Are they growing more appreciative of healthcare workers?

Sometimes you’re forced to grow. You’re challenged by work. By family. By time…….especially trying times.

It is also important to remember that often growth is accompanied by pain.
As I continued my gardening, I remembered a story I had read from Rabbi Dr. Abraham Twerski. (video link below)

“How do lobsters grow?
…a lobster is a soft mushy animal that lives inside of a rigid shell. That rigid shell does not expand.
…how can the lobster grow!?
As the lobster grows, that shell becomes very confining… the lobster feels itself under pressure and uncomfortable.
It goes under a rock formation to protect itself from predatory fish, casts off the shell and produces a new one.
Well eventually that shell becomes very uncomfortable as it grows… back under the rocks… and the lobster repeats this numerous times.”
The Rabbi’s key observation is that it’s the feeling of discomfort that enable
s the lobster to retreat and then grow. Stress becomes the stimulus for further growth.

I love that story but I also believe sometimes the need for growth comes from within.

When you land in a situation where the ground is not so fertile you have to work hard to ensure your own growth. That doesn’t necessarily mean learning some new craft or skill. It can mean growing your existing qualities.


Sometimes we have to water ourselves.


Don’t use your surroundings as an excuse. If a dandelion can grow from a rock, we can grow in these times. Most often the best coaching is born of adversity.

When you’re planted you can wither and die. You can live but wilt…… Or you can decide to grow and thrive. I hope we all choose the latter.

Maybe form a book club for starters……

Hopefully we all shed this painful shell soon and grow into new, more comfortable ones.

To start the process again.

Stronger.

Book club


Lobster Story

EDM

“I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.”
― Billy Joel

A year ago I decided I would learn to play the piano. It was something I always wanted to do. My father was a music teacher and I grew up listening to him masterfully play. I had my own interests, pursuits and dreams at the time, so I never took the time to learn.

Now I sit and work at my new hobby and for brief moments in time I get lost in the music.
I’m not very good……but I love it.
As these days have gone on I’ve found myself more and more attached. Not only to attempting to play, but listening to music.

I thought I would see if others are listening to music more now as well. Wondering what younger people are listening to, I reached out to some of our players and asked them.
The first response back I got was, “Ya, for sure……lots of EDM. Makes me relax and chill…….”
WHAT. THE. HECK. IS. EDM?
Turns out EDM is ‘popular music intended for dancing to in clubs, typically having a repetitive beat and a synthesized backing track.’

Of course…..how did I not know that?….:)

A sampling of some of the other diverse responses, (not sure if some of these are titles, artists, genres or what…)
Breaking Benjamin, Hillsong United, Rap, Country, Eric Church, Drake, Morgan Wallen, Cold Feet, Loud Luxury, Gorillaz, KBong, Bob Marley, Kygo, Sigala, Chainsmokers, Jay Z, Post Malone, Arkells, John Mayer, The Lumineers, Ed Sheeran, Vance Joy, Gareth Emery, Loud Luxury……….and yes even……The Beatles, Petty and Springsteen.

The response from the guys I got was overwhelming. They agreed that they too were listening a lot more these days as well.

Music is a language that doesn’t speak in particular words. It speaks in emotions, and if it’s in the bones, it’s in the bones.”
Keith Richards

Wednesday night I watched the benefit concert for New Jersey Pandemic Relief Fund performed by NJ musicians. Those who know me realize I admire Bruce Springsteen very much. I never miss a chance to see him perform. I got caught up in how good all the musicians were. It was a moving and emotional hour featuring many stories of our front line heroes.
It again occurred to me how much we are affected by music during good times and bad.

One thing is crystal clear to me.
Music heals……or at least it soothes.
It connects and pulls us together.
It was amazing to see the videos from Italy of people singing and sharing music from their balconies while quarantined. They were just trying to stay connected. There are so many other examples of people using music to reach out all around us now.
From the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, World War 1, the Great Depression, World War 2, the Civil Rights Movement, Vietnam, the Cold War, 9-11, the Gulf War, and many other challenging times, music has comforted countless souls. (see examples at bottom of post)
There is a long history of music being ever present……..especially when we really need it.

This is one of those times.

Something has to get us dancing again.

I hope you find your music and it helps you cope.

Me…..I’m heading to the internet to download some great EDM sheet music…..

For my piano.

“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.
John Lennon

Here are just a very few examples from many challenging times in the past.
Click on the links for a stroll back in time…….
Enjoy and stay safe!!!

The Civil War.
When Johnny Comes Marching Home

The War of 1812
The Star Spangled Banner

World War 1
Over There

The Great Depression
Puttin on the Ritz

World War 2
Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy
The White Cliffs of Dover
Blue Moon

The Civil Rights Movement
The Times They Are A Changing
We Shall Overcome

Vietnam
We Gotta Get Out Of This Place
Fortunate Son
Give Me Shelter
Run Through The Jungle

The Cold War
Two Tribes
Games Without Frontiers

9-11
The Rising
My City Of Ruins
Empire State of Mind

The Gulf War
Star Spangled Banner-Whitney Houston

Covid-19
https://youtu.be/dhTjGS3QkYE
????

Wave Length

This blog is dedicated to Paul.

One of the benefits of this time we are going through is having more time to exercise.
Running is something I’ve always loved and now have been able to do more of it.

Recently on a run, I noticed something different.
Normally cars driving by would pass or rush by. Now so many people are slowing down a bit and actually…….. waving.

I thought I was imagining it at first. It was my mind playing tricks during this wacky time. But as the days have passed and the runs have added up, I am certain that people are actually waving a lot more.
I like it.

Having some time on my hands, I did some quick reading on waving and what it means.
There are many theories on the origins and purpose of it. The common threads are that humans want and need connection and waving is a way to do that. Even when forced to stay at length.
Waving is a sign of connection.
It is a sign of acknowledgement.
It can be a sign of peace.
It can be a sign of shared pain….. or of shared hope.
It can mean goodbye. It can mean hello.
It can mean you are on a shared frequency with someone. (hence, Wave frequency).
Waving says, for a brief moment, we are together on this planet. We recognize each other as fellow travelers in life.

Maybe during this time we are needing that connection more than ever.
Maybe we want to feel better.
Maybe we are longing to be on the same wave length as people.

There is an older man who lives up the street from me. I had never met him. I thought he was very private and wanted to be left alone.
For years when I was out on a run I would see him drive by me and we would casually glance at each other. Two weeks ago he too slowed down and to my surprise, waved to me. I waved back.

Yesterday he passed me on the other side of the street and the same exchange of waves happened.
Then he suddenly stopped, rolled down the window, and said, “Hello, I’m Paul. How are you guys doing in this crazy time???”

I realized we’re doing better………much better.

Thanks Paul.

Skies Are Blue

“The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain!”
Dolly Parton

People ask me how I come up with the topics I write about. They are surprised when I tell them I don’t plan them. Sometimes they appear. And yesterday……a topic appeared. Literally.


We are in a dark and difficult time. Lots of rain for sure. I do not want to dismiss the severity of what we are going through.

Yesterday I had to go to the grocery store to get our family some much needed supplies. Before leaving, I spent the morning watching the news. The tough situations going on in hospitals all over the country are so very difficult to process. I gathered myself to focus on what had to be done. I prepared for the trip like all of us have to do now. I never thought I would ever have to don a mask and gloves to go in to a grocery store in this great country. It’s hard to comprehend how our lives have changed.
The grocery store was eerily quiet. People pushing their carts away from one another and trying not to even look at one another in the eye. It was an experience none of us ever thought we would live through.

I drove home with a sinking, depressed feeling inside me. I navigated through almost empty streets in a town that normally would be bustling at that time of day. The sky turned grey and a soft rain started to fall. So did my mood.


It’s been a hard month to remain in a positive frame of mind. Most of us are not even on the front lines of this battle. I thought again of our healthcare professionals. The true heroes that have sacrificed way more than us simply going to the store…… I thought of the families that have lost loved ones.


Returning home, I turned the corner to my street. Suddenly there was the most amazing rainbow I had ever seen. I stopped and took the picture above.
I know it sounds sappy and there is the “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” analogy….but what struck me in that instant was this.
We are going to get through this.
There are better days ahead…..without question.
We are going to come out on the other side.

When we do though, what does the other side of the rainbow look like? What will change? What am I going to look at in a different way? How have I changed…..?

Here are just a few things that will be different for me.
First off the obvious one.
I’ll forever look at doctors, nurses, first responders and scientists as the true heroes of society. Not athletes or politicians.
Some smaller more subtle things…..
I’ll cherish hugging my family members way more now.
I’ll remember to enjoy both the good times and bad with my teammates.
I’ll truly listen to my son after I ask him how his day at school was.
My back won’t hurt as much after bus trips.
I’ll never complain about being bored.
I’ll never take a good toast for granted…..
I’ll keep doing Yoga…..
I’ll remember the importance of a good firm handshake. When I coach in front of fans again I’ll enjoy the game as much as they do…..
There are so many things that will be different for me. But different will be better. We can learn and grow from this experience. We can learn to appreciate what we may now take for granted.

I asked my wife Kim what she will cherish when things return to normal, and I loved what she told me.
She said, “Kerry, I take the dogs for a walk and when we see other people with their dogs, they move over to the other side of the street. Our dogs don’t understand why we can’t go say hello……I want to be able to see the dogs touch noses again and say hello…..”

I’m pretty sure we all want that.

To touch noses again on the other side of the rainbow……..where skies are blue.

Happy Easter Weekend everyone!


Friendship

“Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It’s not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.” Muhammad Ali

Last night I had the privilege to join in a video call with five longtime friends. Six old friends from Peterborough in six different cities across North America. We hadn’t been together as a group in a very long time and the effect the call had on me was profound. Out of that experience this blog on Friendship was born.

One positive thing about going through what we are as a society is the time we all now have time to organize and prioritize. We get extremely busy with work, family responsibilities and the day to day hustle and bustle of life. Time is precious.
Now we have some extra time. This is a great opportunity to reach out to old friends and reconnect. Trust me, the reward will make you feel amazing.

“Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the world together.” Woodrow Wilson

What are some benefits of friendships?

Good friends are good for your health. Friends can help you celebrate good times and provide support during bad times. Friends prevent loneliness and give you a chance to offer needed companionship, too. Friends can also:

  • Increase your sense of belonging and purpose
  • Boost your happiness and reduce your stress
  • Improve your self-confidence and self-worth
  • Help you cope with all of life’s traumas
  • Encourage you to change or avoid unhealthy lifestyle habits.
    Friends also play a significant role in promoting your overall health. Adults with strong social support have a reduced risk of many significant health problems, including depression, high blood pressure and an unhealthy body mass index (BMI). Studies have even found that older adults with a rich social life are likely to live longer than their peers with fewer connections.

“Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.” Oprah

Most importantly friends just help you feel better.

“A lack of friendships and social support increases the risk of developing an anxiety or depressive disorder,” says Dr. Janice Glover, (Ph.D., licensed psychologist at Children’s Hospital Colorado), “and one of the key treatment components for depression is helping individuals expand their social network and increase the amount of time they are spending with friends.” In fact, good friendships predict health and happiness as we age better than do our relationships with relatives, two studies from Michigan State University show.

Remember, it’s never too late to build new friendships or reconnect with old friends. Strengthening your friendships can pay off in better health and a brighter outlook for years to come.
There is no better time to reach out to friends to capture that outlook.

Thank you to my good friends who were on the call and to Gary Lawless for making the call happen.

Look For The Helpers

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
Fred Rogers

This Sunday as we sit and try to digest all that has transpired in the last ten days, it is a great time to pause and think about what a few special people are now doing for all of us. As always looking to history helps us understand current challenges.

“Never was so much owed by so many to so few.”
British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, 20 August 1940.

Churchill used that famous line in a speech during The Battle of Britain in World War Two, while honoring the bravery and sacrifice of the outnumbered British Air Force fighting off the German Luftwaffe and defending their nation. That quote could easily be applied today to some exceptionally brave people in this country……

Many people in addition to Churchill’s ‘Few’ worked to defend Britain. Ground crews looked after the aircraft. Factory workers helped keep aircraft production up. Volunteers ensured that the thousands of observation posts were continuously manned. Members of the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) served as radar operators and worked as plotters, tracking raids in the group and sector operations rooms.
It truly was a team effort.

Here in America, our citizen’s remarkable acts of bravery and sacrifice in times of crisis have made this great country survive and thrive.
That will continue to happen.

In 1776 Continental Congress in Philadelphia authored one of the most profound documents in the history of mankind. The founders set out to create a new nation. One conceived in liberty, where individual rights were to be absolute and where freedom would reign supreme. In an extraordinary act of bravery and patriotism, 56 men signed the Declaration of Independence and The United States was formed. For over 240 years, The U.S. has endured a long and arduous journey to keep the nation alive.

On D-Day, it was our soldiers who ran straight at the Nazis. During many wars and conflicts it was the military, with the support and sacrifice at home of military families, who led our battles for freedom. On 9/11 it was the firefighters who ran into burning buildings to save lives as others were running out.
Today during our newest battle it’s the doctors and nurses, running straight to danger as the rest of the world isolates from it. Others are volunteering for new drug trials. Don’t forget the grocery store clerks, cashiers, baggers…. the bank tellers…..the take out drive thru kids……truckers who deliver goods….the post office, the ups and fed ex workers…….the cafeteria workers and housekeeping staffs at the hospitals……..and of course all the other first responders, paramedics and EMTs.

They are the best of us.

But like Churchill’s Britain, it is going to take a team effort. Let’s all think about that and try to do what we can to help and do our part. Take the situation seriously but let’s not panic. Help where you can….heed the advice of the scientists and experts. The country has been through a lot and will get through this.

Because of the helpers.

10 Quotes/10 Books

Our team has a group of players that share what they are reading. During this down time a couple of them asked me what I had going. So I thought I would post a quick blog. First 10 fun reading quotes, followed by 10 books on a suggested shutdown reading list. Enjoy!

1. “If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

2. “Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.” – Jim Rohn

3. “Think before you speak. Read before you think.” – Fran Lebowitz

4.

5. “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss

6. “Books are a uniquely portable magic.” – Stephen King

7. “Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

8.

9. “The person who deserves most pity is a lonesome one on a rainy day who doesn’t know how to read.” – Benjamin Franklin

10.

1. These Truths. A History of The United States. Jill Lepore. https://www.amazon.com/These-Truths-History-United-States/dp/0393635244

2. The Splendid and The Vile. Erik Larson. A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz https://www.amazon.com/dp/0385348711/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_66.CEbSKEVGPT

3. Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest Nuclear Disaster https://www.amazon.com/dp/1501134639/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_A9.CEb89NWWQ2

4. The Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers https://www.amazon.com/dp/1419735160/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_eaaDEbCFCC579

5. Something Needs to Change: A Call to Make Your Life Count in a World of Urgent Need https://www.amazon.com/dp/0735291411/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_OcaDEb6F6EA67

6. John Adams Under Fire: The Founding Father’s Fight for Justice in the Boston Massacre Murder Trial https://www.amazon.com/dp/1335015922/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_seaDEb0PBNTXR

7. The Hope Of Glory. Jon Meacham https://www.amazon.com/Hope-Glory-Reflections-Words-Jesus/dp/0593236661

8. Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators https://www.amazon.com/dp/0316486639/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_YfaDEbY9XYTWB

9. Me: Elton John Official Autobiography https://www.amazon.com/dp/1250147603/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_whaDEbRXDCYRT

10. You’re Not Listening: What You’re Missing and Why It Matters https://www.amazon.com/dp/1250297192/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_ViaDEbTZA194W

Time’s Yours

“I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.”
–Anne Frank

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”
–Benjamin Franklin

It’s been about a week now since all of our lives changed drastically with the news of the Coronavirus spreading in North America. Our season was paused and we obviously don’t know when or if we will get back to the rink this season. Like so many of you, I am confused and stunned by today’s reality.

Years ago when I was working in the Player Agency/Representation business, I started writing a fun hockey-related blog as a way to help me sort out my thoughts and connect with our young players. I guess it was my own self-imposed therapy that helped me through some challenging times. When I took the job with the Philadelphia Flyers, to work with their young defense prospects in Lehigh Valley, I felt like I should take a break from it and focus on the job at hand. Plus, there are not too many pro coaches writing blogs so I thought I better conform to the norm…..

But now like everyone else, I am faced with a lot of time on my hands and also facing this growing uncertainty of what the future holds. So, I thought I’d rely on my old crutch and do a little bit of writing. I’m in no way an expert on any of this but whatever gets you through the night…..right?

As coaches we spend an enormous amount of time watching video, game planning and discussing systems. We like to think we control a lot more than we actually really do.
We are now all faced with a real situation that can’t be solved by watching a computer screen or going to a white board. This is very human.

We are also selfish. We would love to be back competing and trying to win that next game….. But this game has to be won first. This virus has to be slowed down and contained to prevent an overwhelming strain on our healthcare system. True, this probably won’t be that serious to the young and healthy among us. But, to the elderly and medically vulnerable, it is imperative that it get slowed. We all have to realize this now and do our part to help stop the spread. Hockey and sporting events can surely wait.

So now we have time. More than we’re accustomed to. More than we’re comfortable with.

I took a few days to really just think. Think about hockey. Think about the journey to this point. Think about my family. Think about life. About what to do if this social distancing continues and even evolves into a quarantine situation.
So here is what I came up with that I want to share:
The one thing that really hit me was just how important other things in life are and not just hockey. I am getting to spend a lot of time with my family and that has been such a needed thing.

And why not use this time to get better. Become a better player, a better coach, a better Dad, a better person…..whatever. Take this time as a blessing and turn all of this into a some kind of growth period. But don’t waste it. It is a gift.

Remember that during quarantine, Shakespeare wrote King Lear; Isaac Newton laid the foundations for his laws of motion.

Or to tie it back to hockey, consider Wilbur Wright one of the fathers of modern aviation. In the winter of 1885-86, an accident changed the course of Wilbur’s life. He was badly injured in an ice hockey game on a frozen pond in Dayton, Oh. He was high-sticked in the mouth and suffered serious dental injuries and spent weeks in bed and months confined to home. He was plagued by that injury throughout his entire life. Wilbur spent much of this period at home, reading books in his family’s library and during this time he developed a passion for mechanical problem-solving. This new found passion became a driving force that ultimately led to man’s first flight. 

So down time doesn’t need to be wasted time.

 

Here is some great advice from an actual expert on dealing with this situation. This is by Claudia W. Allen, a licensed clinical psychologist and Director of Behavioral Science at the University of Virginia’s School of Medicine. (The full article link is below)

Go Outside
If you’re not confined to the house, exercise outside. Exercise, sunlight and being around trees all benefit mood. Exercise has such a positive effect on mood it is actually a prescribed treatment for mild to moderate depression. Make it a priority on your daily schedule.
Be Intentional

Use any extra time very intentionally; don’t drift through the weeks. Pick one or two things you’ve wanted to learn about or how to do and teach yourself. Plan to come out of this quarantine with a new skill or hobby.
Beware of Too Much Social Media

Use social media wisely. No doubt, social media is your friend when isolated. But resist scrolling through Facebook and Instagram endlessly; that won’t really feed your need for connection, but has been shown in some studies to actually make people feel left out or “less than.” Instead, use social media to meaningfully connect. Plan weekly (or even daily) group video chats with friends, family, neighbors or colleagues. Social connection is one of the most important drivers of well-being.
Be a Helper

Helping others is a known mood-booster. Be aware of who in your circle might be particularly vulnerable during this time and check on them by phone or email.

Me, I’m gonna continue to challenge myself to read books that will help me grow as a leader and coach. I will do some writing that I probably will never post anywhere but I know that it helps me cope……..

I will continue to annoy my wife and son by pounding away at my piano……I will get outside and enjoy some golf…..I will take some time to reflect on the journey. But the most important thing will be the time spent with my family and realizing how truly blessed we are. There will be no down time.

Stay safe, wash you hands…….and challenge yourself to find a way to get better during this time.
Hockey will be back at some point. Better than ever. And it’s healing and bonding ways will be needed when the time is right.
But for now, let’s remember the wise words of Super Bowl winning coach Andy Reid and how he ended every press conference …. “Time’s yours……”

Article
https://news.virginia.edu/content/how-protect-your-mental-health-during-quarantine

 

Love, Serve, Care

This is a great new post by writer Jon Gordon that I really wanted to share. Whether coaching Mites or Pros, this philosophy remains true for all.
Hope you enjoy!

Love, Serve, Care

By Jon Gordon

When I’m asked what someone can do to be a leader I tell them to love, serve and care and positively influence the people around them.

A great example of this is Ken Crenshaw, the head athletic trainer for the Arizona Diamondbacks. Most people outside the building wouldn’t know who he is but if you asked the team who’s one of the most influential people in the building they would say Ken Crenshaw. He helps players recover from injuries, listens to their personal and professional challenges, shares advice and frequently hands out inspirational books (some of mine) to encourage his players. He’s part trainer, part psychologist, part librarian and 100% leader.

I saw his influence first hand while visiting him at the Diamondbacks spring training facility the other day. As he showed me around, I met player after player who had read The Carpenter or Training Camp because Ken gave them a copy and encouraged them to read it. They didn’t know me from Adam. But they knew Ken and trusted him because he loves, serves and cares.

I wasn’t supposed to speak to the team but that happened too because Ken recommended it to the new manager, and even though he had never heard of me, he trusted Ken’s suggestion.

Regardless of your profession or level within an organization I want you to know that you don’t need a title to be a leader. You don’t need a job description, fancy suit or a corner office. You simply need to love, serve and care to influence the people around you and your influence will grow.

Many people say to focus on growing your business and career. But I say to focus on loving, serving and caring and your business and career will grow exponentially. Focus on loving, serving and caring one person at a time and people will be drawn to you and your business, service, school, class, project, hospital, etc.

Do this day in and day out, one person at a time and the impact you have and the legacy you leave will be amazing. You won’t just experience success for yourself. You will be a true success by helping others be successful.

#LoveServeCare

http://www.jongordon.com/

Best wishes for a successful finish to the season.
Coach Huff

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