APR 28


by Referee

Officials are quitting at record rates and many veteran officials have testified sportsmanship has become much worse over the years. Others want to stay connected to the game they love, but are ill‑equipped to successfully navigate the inevitable turmoil.

It’s important to note officials must recognize they will never be able to completely control others’ behaviors; they instead will only be able to manage difficult situations. Nothing we say or do will fundamentally change fan, coach or player behavior during the course of the game.

Take care of what we can control. Instead of focusing on external factors we cannot control, we can examine and develop the components that are wholly within our circle of influence.

magine you decided to tackle the Tour du Mont Blanc, a 110‑mile hike through France, Italy and Switzerland. A shrewd person would study maps, research blogs and testimonials from previous hikers, purchase essential equipment, formulate a schedule, develop meal plans and reserve accommodations at appropriate intervals. The person would also design a fitness regimen to ensure he or she was in peak condition to undertake the physically challenging quest. It’s safe to imagine an untrained and ill‑equipped hiker would encounter many more obstacles than one who had meticulously prepared.

The hiker cannot control the weather, airline schedules or behavior of other hikers on the trail. However, by minimizing or eliminating variables that are well within the hiker’s span of control, the hiker can completely focus on the task ahead and on managing unforeseen events.

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