What Smart Leaders Learn From The Super Bowl

Super bowl

Summary: Watching the Super Bowl, cheerin’g for your favorite team, snacking, and connecting with friends can be fun. Also, pay attention to what you learn even if you never have to tackle an opponent to the ground.

Dear Dr. Sylvia,

I know it is popular to have a business coach these days. That, so they say, will help make my team and me better and better.

I started to think about the word coach. Until the last few decades, the term coach was only associated with sports.

I guess business, in its way, is a sport.

For example, there are winners and losers, team collaboration for success, and recruiting for the best players (employees).

For instance, what should I observe when watching the action on the field? How will this help me become a better leader?

Leadership development skills are vital for all areas of life.

I want to be the best, the MVP in my company.

I am a senior VP in the beauty industry. We have salons and spas in many states and are now opening state-of-the-art hybrid wellness centers.

What tips can you give me as I watch while cheering on my home team? I, like you, am from Philly. I hope you are also cheering on the guys in green, the ones who soar above the rest, the Philadelphia Eagles.


Touchdown Tony

Have a coach to help you be the best version of yourself.

Dear TT,

Way back in the day, in the 1980s, the term coach started to sprout up in the business sector.

Until then, coaching was all about offense and defense and how teams operate on the field.

Not anymore.

Here is a short history lesson regarding coaching.

Firstly, coaching is often confused with therapy, consulting, training, and mentoring.

Next, it became “a thing” in the 1980s when Thomas Leonard, a financial planner, observed that his clients wanted to discuss more than just the usual tips about investing and keeping their money safe.

They did not, he realized, want therapy for traumatic issues. These are healthy people who wish to have help with life planning.

And a whole new field was born.

One big question about the world of coaching. Is it a credible profession or another “feel-good flavor of the month/year?”

Finally, a word of caution. Life and business coaching are not regulated. Many add the word coach to their credentials without any substantial training.

Therefore, make sure you check out the person you hire.

Indeed, ask about their background and their track record. Get references. Please be careful, there are so many individuals with minimal training who will gladly take your money and ask you questions without any actual action items to help you grow.

The Super Bowl, the ads, and the halftime show can teach and amuse you.

Now for your task during the Super Bowl.

Pay attention to the statistics you hear about each player.

Ask yourself this question: How did they get to be so good?

The answer is below.

Winning leaders, like winning athletes, expect more of themselves than most of us.

It starts with one word that sounds good when rolling from your lips, yet, it feels like a sharp knife when the wake-up alarm goes off in the morning and it’s time to put your ideas into practice.

The word?

Write this down.

The word is discipline.

Why does it have such an edge? For most of us, it’s a word that has a sense of punishment from childhood when we were taught to obey rules, or we would get a time out or be deprived of our favorite toy.

Our parents would “discipline us” to get us to behave.

Want a better word to get up to in the morning?

Write this down.

The word is “PREPARE.”                                                                                         

In the world of mastery, preparation is a must. When you prepare, you are getting ready for something that will happen in the future. The concept is filled with anticipation and good results.

Okay, with feet planted firmly on the floor, you can pick one of the following quotes for inspiration.

Which one has more energy for you to move forward:

                                         Do what you love, and the money will follow (oh, this sounds so good).

                                          Do what needs to be done, and the money will follow (more to the point).

One is filled with fluffy promises and disappointment. The other will keep you on track. So, get up and do what needs to be done.

The art and science for leaders and high-end athletes are the same. You prepare and do what will keep you strong and focused. You get out of bed on those dark, cold mornings even if you would instead turn over to dream another dream.

Those focused on mastery eat for health rather than indulgence.

You eat for health rather than indulgence.

Eat the oatmeal. Oats are gluten-free and a great source of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Those chocolate pancakes with syrup sound better than a bowl of oatmeal.

Spend time (minutes) resetting your thinking for the day ahead, leaving anxieties at the door. Then get out and get going.

Stress can help you if you know what to look for.

Check out my book “Invisible Stress (It’s NOT What YOU Think)” to find the best ways to be the master of what causes you stress.

For example, think of it this way. Great leaders and top athletes are always in training. Once out of bed and into the world of the day, here’s what going for the gold looks like:

  • Prepare to build on your talents
  • Keep long-term goals always in the back of your mind
  • Have short-term goals planned for the day
  • Accept coaching and request feedback
  • Be action-oriented
  • Stay open, not attached to the outcome
  • Practice deep breathing to stay calm, cool, and collected

Excellence in business and sports have a common bottom line: All strive for mastery.

The most skilled leaders I coach have one thing in common. They strive for mastery.

When they flounder, they have a “no whine zone” and rather than sound like victims they explore new ways of responding. They don’t go into the blame, attack, or justify mode. They don’t fixate on being the best, they focus on constantly learning and becoming.

Become the most effective leader you can be and, even better, be a role model for others to follow.

Here’s to your success,

Sylvia Lafair

PS. Just a moment to “toot my own horn.” I am so honored to be on the award list as one of the Top 30 Leadership Gurus for 2023. This is my eleventh year on the list, with some of the most creative individuals making a difference.

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Creative Energy Options

Sylvia Lafair

Creative Energy Options