Putting It All Together, Part 2

mauro_chrisChapter Twelve


“In high school, I had a coach who told me I was much better than I thought I was, and would make me do more in a positive sense. He was the first person who taught me not to be afraid of failure. He’d tell me to shoot 25 times a game, and I’d say, “No, I can’t do that, everyone will hate me.” “You do it.”, he’d say, and even though I didn’t do that all the time, he kept pushing me to be better. If success or talent were on floors, maybe I saw myself on the fifth floor. He always saw me on the twentieth floor. As a result, I climbed more floors when I was with him.”

– Mike Krzyzewski, Head Coach, Duke University Basketball Team

The greatest tennis players in the world have all had a coach, or coaches to help them get where they are. Having a coach, mentor, guide, or teacher is indispensable. Roger Federer is arguably the greatest talent that tennis has ever seen, and he has a coach. Why? He is constantly ‘sharpening his axe’. He wants to be ready for battle every time he steps onto the tennis court, and his coach helps him to do that. Roger Federer is already worth millions of dollars.

Why does he keep doing it?

Why does he keep going?

What else does he have to prove?

I’ll tell you why he keeps going. He loves the game, and wants to go down in history as the greatest person to have ever played it -ever.

That’s why.

Remember the power of ‘why’!

When you see Federer, or any top player in the late stages of a tough match, bet on the player with the bigger ‘why’.

What Can A GOOD Coach Do For You?

Roger Federer has a very strong ‘why’ and now, as he ages,  a very short
time left to accomplish it. However, he knows that all he really needs to do is stay on track, focus on what is in front of him, change what isn’t working and keep repeating what does work. Remember the directions on the shampoo bottle? Bingo. But he also has that coach there, to help him to keep his strokes repeatable, stay focused, work on any flaws, as well as seek out areas where he can improve. There are many benefits to having a coach that seem subtle at first, but they are the things that make the biggest difference in a person’s results. Let’s take a look at them for a moment.

Common Ground; or “Yeah, I Know Whatcha Mean!”

The very first benefit of having a tennis coach or mentor is the benefit of common ground. When you have a coach to support you, you have left the arena of wishing and stepped into the arena of reality. There is now someone in your corner, and you are feeling better about your hopes and plans already. Your coach has in all likelihood been down the road you are traveling, and can offer several insights to help get you where you want to be.

You and your coach agree that there is a whole world of possibility out there. You both want more for your game than you have right now, and you’re both determined to get it. You are on common ground, and this makes you feel great – really great! That’s common ground.


The second benefit of having a coach is accountability. Being kept accountable allows you to do what needs to be done, which leads you to earn the right to expect the results you want. When you’re having a problem, you can go to the coach. When you need motivation, your coach can help you reinforce your ‘why’.

Your ‘Growth Zone’

The third benefit you’ll realize from having a coach is that you will realize far more growth and reach your potential much quicker than you ever could have on your won. Your boundaries and limits will be pushed beyond your comfort zone. Your coach will help you push your limits to places you didn’t even know existed. Your coach will get you out of your ‘comfort zone’ and into your ‘growth zone’. Your coach knows that the growth comes when you are exceeding that which you previously thought was your limit. And your coach also knows that that’s right where you need to be. Now you know it, too.

Coming Up With a Plan

The fourth thing a good coach will be able to help you do is develop a plan. A coach knows that your True Desires are just that – YOURS. With that, your coach will be able to help you come up with an actionable plan to achieve your tennis goals. Let’s take a look back at some of the steps you needed to take in Chapter Six. Sit back, relax, and think about what you might accomplish with a coach who will help you do the following:

-Declare your intentions
-Detail your goals
-Ask “How am I going to do it?”
-Measure your progress
-Be realistic
-Give yourself a deadline

What do you think you could accomplish on the court if you had someone right there with you all the way, helping you? You know the drill. Write it down. Stew on it for awhile. Grab your favorite beverage, go outside, put one hand in your pocket, sip the drink with your other hand, and seriously ask yourself that question. Take a few sips. Dwell on it for awhile. Allow yourself to go to ‘that place’, where you really see all the possibilities that are out there for your game.Write it down when you’re through. Commit yourself to what is possible. Then come back here. If you were honest with yourself in asking that question, do you really think that you could fail? As long as your goal is realistic, would your success even be a question? You and I both know the answer to that. All that’s required of you now is focused action.

Remember our formula? You should have it with you already.


Remember, keep this formula with you at all times. When you run into a challenge, take it out and look at it.

Fill in the blanks again.

Remember your ‘why’.

Your coach can help you with this. I’ve given you an incomplete, but powerful list of benefits that you will enjoy by using a coach. Everything I have gotten in my life was gotten in some way with the help of another person. Don’t be a maverick and try to go it alone out of fear. Rather, come from a position of power by seeking out the knowledge you need to improve you game, and don’t be afraid to ask for help! The coaches I worked with, playing and teaching, all had the same things in common.

They all:

-saw me as someone who had a sincere desire to learn.
-made sure not to shove their opinions down my throat, but rather waited for me to ask the right questions.
-were people I trusted and respected as players and instructors.
-treated me with the same respect I afforded them.
-had something unique to offer that I didn’t possess.
-were willing to go out of their way to help me.
-wanted to help me succeed in becoming a better tennis player and

These are the kind of qualities you want in the people you surround yourself with. Surround yourself with the best, and that’s what you’ll become.


“Get busy living, or get busy dying.”

Ellis Boyd ‘Red’ Redding – The Shawshank Redemption

Well, you’ve come full circle.

Now what?

What will you do with the information you have? Will you act on it?
As I mentioned earlier in the book, there are only two things you will
do with this information now that you have it.

1. You will either act on it, or

2. You won’t.

It is a matter of your will.

Go back through the lists you wrote down. Go back and read your ‘why’ list. Write down what it will cost you if you don’t take the steps you need to get your game where you want it to be, then write out all that you will gain
by taking those same steps. Write them down. Do it – do it now! Make yourself do one thing that will get you one step closer to your tennis goals, and make yourself put it in writing. When you write something down, you are holding yourself accountable to getting it done. Try this declaration of accountability:

“I, (Write your Name here), will, in the next 24 hours, (fill in
action step here), and this will bring me one step closer to my tennis
goal of (Fill in Goal Here).”

Make a list of the actionable steps you can take and make sure that you fill out a declaration of accountability for each one after you finish the first one. Keep the declarations when you’re done; just draw a line through them, or make a check mark next to them indicating that you have completed the task, or ‘mini-goal’ as you may call it. From time-to-time, go back and look at each of the steps that you followed and actions you took and completed. This will remind you of all that you’ve accomplished and the equity that you have built up in yourself, and the value of your endeavors. This is a very powerful step; don’t think of it as ‘hokey’ or ‘cheesy’. This is the way things get done. Once this list is complete, the rest is up to you.

Will you write down everything you’ve been told to and commit to it?

Will you focus on one step at a time, or will your tennis dreams wither and die?

You know it is one or the other.

There is no ‘thinking about it’ or ‘trying’.

There are only will and won’t, and do and don’t.

Let your True Self make those decisions, and keep your other self as your captured slave, constantly reminding you that you’re in a battle every day. That’s a fair trade, no? You can have the tennis game you Truly Desire and so much more if you focus on it, one step at a time.

You are responsible for getting what it is that you want out of this great game. Are you committed to finding someone who can help you along the way? Find that coach. Find that mentor. See what you can accomplish with your game. Take the challenge, and focus on what’s possible.

I’m rooting for you all the way – and I’ll see YOU in the finals!

To Your Massive Tennis Success,
Coach Kyril

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