Calm in Chaos
My first year coaching for the Aberdeen Wings, we went to the Robertson Cup, the NAHL's version of the Frozen Four.
We weren't necessarily supposed to be there though.
We were the last seed going into playoffs, and 4th seed of four. We only clinched our (last) playoff spot the week or two prior. We got in by the skin of our teeth.
We had an intensely tight team. Our first series we won in 4 games, but it wasn't all easy. We lost game three 7-1.
7-1! In the playoffs! An elimination game, which had we won, would have moved us on to the next round. Don't you think that's an important game!?
It was chaotic. Right from the start. But we didn't doubt ourselves in that tumult and chaos.
My goalie at the time, Forbes, and I created a mental trigger to take our minds out of chaos and back into focus on the moment.
I suggest you think of your own as well.
We imagined a hurricane. Swarming, swirling, spiraling out of control. The world is falling apart in a hurricane.
Roofs are ripped from buildings, trees are torn from the soil, water rises. We feel hopeless in the hurricane. Too much is going on outside our control.
But we focused on the eye. What happens at the center of a hurricane? It's eerily calm. Completely peaceful. And that was the headspace we wanted to find during games.
We decided we wanted to be the calm at the center of swirling chaos. We would visualize the destruction of the storm, and imagine the game as that. Then we visualize the eye, the calm, the quiet.
This practice is just a mini-meditation, but it would remind Forbes, in any moment, who he wanted to be.
Right now, you might feel like the world is in a state of hurricane. Things change seemingly every day. It can be hard to manage!
But get back to the eye. Think about that calm, right at the center of yourself. Be the calm eye. Be the steady in chaos.
Stay frosty, friends.