If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." Einstein
I developed Solution-Based Basketball as a way to learn the game. The theory seems simple enough – get as much knowledge and information as you can, study the game very deeply, know the players inside out, prepare for practices and the games – and do so in a way that is simple and clear to all involved.

My friend Frank Sowa, who follows this blog, inspired today’s post when he sent me this quote from Albert Einstein after reading my Compensation post:

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction – toward simplicity.”

This expresses the essence of Solution-Based Basketball.

So if you want to be like Einstein or Coach B or if you just want to be a better person or coach, the steps are the same (in theory, at least.) Here they are:

  1. Ask a lot of questions and keep asking until you are certain that you’ve identified the real problem. Don’t just ask yourself, but also reach out to other people early in this process.
  2. Gather information – dig deep, be patient, look where others have failed to look or have given up too soon. Dig out the complex and filter it out so that just the simple is left.
  3. Develop action steps – Know what you want to do, set your goals and put a time frame around everything.
  4. Try out several different options; don’t settle on any one too soon. It’s ok to fail, in fact if you don’t fail you can never truly succeed – but never stop trying.
  5. Reach a conclusion and start to implement. Start basic and follow logical steps based on your own situation and circumstances. Never stop learning.

In coaching you are always going to have problems, concerns, wins, losses, bad calls, unhappy players. Study, look deep, but as Albert says, keep it simple!

I’m no Einstein, but I just may have figured out his theory of relativity as it relates to basketball – in theory, if you play good solid, aggressive, fundamentally sound defense, with great effort and attitude, your opponents will make relatively fewer baskets.

So there you are.

New Year’s Theories for Solution-Based Basketball

As you start your new year take a good look at yourself, at those around you, at your team and embrace the Solution-Based process. Go at your own rate, understand yourself first, know your expectations – are they realistic? Know your strengths and weaknesses. Find joy in the struggle and in discovering new opportunities.

  • Listening, communicating and caring are all skills that can be acquired, in theory, for Solution-Based Basketball. Always be looking for the best solution.
  • You must have courage to raise tough questions and be open to change.
  • Do you have a word for the year? Last year mine was “Finish” – and I finished my book. This year my word is “Beyond” – go further, deeper and longer than last year. Having a word for the years is better than making resolutions – at least, in theory.
  • Great coaching is not all about winning or losing; its is about being better than you used to be.
  • When winning, our friends know us; when losing, we know our friends.

Remember in 2012 – Complaining and bitching take time away from finding solutions.

Besop’s Thought

Most of you know by now that I have always enjoyed Aesop’s Fables – so here is another Besop for the new year.

I Will Be Back
The insight: Reality. It sets in and you know you are going to lose – hope fades, the mind holds on, but somewhere deep down you KNOW. You are proud of what you’ve done and how you have played, but you also know deep down you could have played better.

You feel angry, almost resentful of your opponent. Even though they are handling the win with class, it still feels like they’re rubbing it in. It hurts – there is so much that goes into each game throughout the season: the long hours, the practices, the conditioning, the weights – and now it’s over.

Suddenly, I don’t want it to end. It went too fast and it really wasn’t that bad. It was worth all the ups and downs. Well, suck it up. Shake your opponents’ hands, force that smile. It really was a great run. Finish with class.

I will be back. I will be back.

The pep talk: Life often allows you the opportunity to come back. Prepare yourself through Solution-Based Basketball every day like you expect to win them all. But just in case you don’t, always put yourself in a position to come back.

Happy New Year
from Coach B & the Head Coach 

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