Five Things To Do If You Don't Have Enough Time

There are only 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week. The amount of time you have is never going to change. So, I don't teach coaches time management. I talk to coaches about self management.

Is it possible you have more time than you think? Most coaches talk about how busy they are and how they don't have ANY time do to ANYTHING else.

I call bullshit!

I'm gonna challenge you on this one! (I'm a coach that's my job.)  It's time to be honest and get super clear about where to set boundaries. Identify what can be removed from your plate. Take a look at your habits, your stories, and begin to get more creative as you examine things you do over and over again.

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Help your athletes get better sleep when the stakes are high

Research shows athletes can improve their performance - in training and in competition - by getting extra sleep. Yet when the stakes are high at championship competitions, it can be harder and harder to fall asleep. 

Athletes can have stress and anxiety going into these competitions that make falling asleep a real challenge. If they are well rested and full of energy as coaches want them to be - ready to tap into peak performance - it can make falling asleep even harder. How do you deal with this dichotomy?

Here are 4 tips you can share with your athletes:

1. Be intentional

Set up an environment where you can:

  • Feel safe - doors locked, windows closed
  • Remain undisturbed - let people know you are going to sleep, use the restroom
  • Get comfortable and warm

Take time to create the conditions where you can be totally relaxed. If noise disturbs you try some earplugs. If there is a lot of light coming into the room, try an eye mask.

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Do your excuses interfere with your vacation?

I encourage the coaches I work with to schedule their vacations and downtime FIRST...then schedule the rest of the season around that.

Here are some typical responses. (I'm wondering if you can relate?)


  • "Are you joking?"
  • "I can't commit to that. There are way too many things that might come up."
  • "You're kidding, right?!"


  • "If we do well enough this season, then I'll see if I can take some time off."
  • "If we sign three recruits this fall, I'll schedule something in the spring."
  • "If I can keep my assistant coach here for another season, I'll make sure to get that in."


  • "I can't do it right now. I don't have any bandwidth to think about that right now."
  • "I promise I'll schedule my vacation 'later'."
  • "I'll find time for some long as nothing else important comes up."


If you have a hard time taking vacation, you're not alone. The majority of Americans don't use their hard-earned vacation time. In 2015, 55 percent of Americans combined to leave 658 million vacation days unused. (GfK KnowledgePanel®)

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Three Stories That Hold Coaches Back

We all have stories we tell ourselves. Some stories originated to protect us and helped us grow into the people we are today. There comes a time when these same stories no longer serve us. They hold us back.

Here are 3 stories I see coaches struggle with all the time.


How it shows up...

You hand a project off to someone on your staff. It doesn’t get done right. Instead of taking the time to get really clear on your specific expectations of what it looks like when it’s done and done go ahead and just do it yourself.

As a coach, you are capable of a lot. You are good at juggling a lot of things - all at once. Does the fact that you CAN do it mean you SHOULD do it? Of course not!

Where it originated...

Perhaps it originated from a time when you became more independent in your life. You learned that you COULD do some things by yourself - instead of having your parents help or do it for you. There comes a time when this story no longer serves you.

What to try instead...

First of all, take the time to get clear when you delegate something. Make sure you tell that person what you're expectations are and be prepared to give them constructive feedback if it doesn't meet your standards. 

Next, get creative about the things you hand off. Here's a great example of this...

One of the coaches I work with has a lot on her plate. She’s a new mom, a wife, a coach, and a teacher.

She started thinking of where she felt stress, resentment, and anxiety. The first area was cooking. The second was cleaning. She's figured out two new things to delegate: 

  1. She now subscribes to a weekly food service. A box arrives each week with new recipes and fresh ingredients. She looks forward to seeing what shows up...and her family has loved the meals!
  2. Next, she hired a cleaning service to come twice a month. Her husband does a better job of picking up before the cleaning service comes and they both enjoy a fresh, clean home on a regular basis.

Boom. She describes these changes as, "timesavers and lifesavers." 

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Five Reminders From my first year as a head coach

I still remember my very first day of work at Washington State University. I was a 26 year old first-year head coach. I showed up in my boss's office on July 1st, 2002 at 8am, sharp - my backpack on, coffee in hand, ready to be put through my paces. I was wide-eyed and ready to learn the ropes.

My boss welcomed me into her office. Then, she introduced me to her assistant who gave me keys to my office and a brief checklist - to get my email setup, schedule my faculty orientation, and other 'new person' logistics. 

I walked into my dark new office that had blank walls and an empty desk. I didn't even have a computer yet. So, I sat there for a few minutes and just stared forward. "Well, now what, Quam?," I asked myself. "What have you gotten yourself into?"

Here are 5 reminders I now share with new head coaches to support them through this transition:

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Ever wish you had a magic wand to change the attitude of your team?

Do you ever wish you had a magic wand...that you could just waive over your athletes when they're complaining, whining, blaming, or being negative? 

It's unrealistic to expect your athletes to be positive and chipper all of the time. (Let's get real...I'm not always positive and chipper myself. Especially before I've had my coffee).

Yet, some days when my team would come out onto the pool deck for was like a forcefield of negative energy. It was like the dementors out of Harry Potter. (I love Harry Potter...). Everything felt heavy, dramatic, and dark.

I wished I had a magic wand to simply shift their energy. I wanted to help them realize how carrying this heavy negative energy seemed to drain their POTENTIAL. If only they could be more open, more light, and allow things to flow.


Imagine you begin your day with 100 units of energy. You got a good night of sleep and are ready to start your day.

(If you went to bed late and didn't get the right amount of sleep for you then subtract maybe five or ten units...just to be fair).

Things will happen over the course of your day and you'll be given a chance to respond. 

(Notice the get to respond...that's really important!)

Your response takes energy. You can choose to respond in a way that takes more energy or less energy. That part is up to you.

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