Planning and Goal Setting
‘Baldrick I have a cunning plan!! In fact Baldrick, it`s so cunning you could stick at tail on it and call it a fox!” Edmund Blackadder
So do any of you cricketers have a cunning plan when you play?
Finally footy is out of the way and the cricket season is officially up and running! What better time to discuss goals and planning for the new season. Whilst they are not for everyone I guess, plans help keep us motivated and driven towards our goals.
It`s safe to say we should start with where we want to be and work backwards. Knowing where we are going is always the best place to start. I like to encourage my players to think about planning their goals in the same way that people plan a car journey..
When the journey starts the driver always know where he / she`s going, has a basic or sometimes exact route they intend to take and are always flexible to taking detours as required to avoid roadwork`s, notorious high volume traffic roads and so on.
Usually drivers know how long the trip is going take and preparation is made for the trip usually in the way of buying drinks and chips for the ride, planned toilet stops etc.
If you can relate that to a player on a weekend who goes out to bat wanting to make a hundred for example with absolutely no idea of how he is going to get there against different types of bowlers, is it any wonder why some of the most talented batsmen you have met play their whole careers, hundreds of innings and score literally a handful of hundreds (if indeed any)..
Having plans in life is for most people everyday life. How many of us have targets to meet at work and indeed have performance reviews to improve our overall performance?
When planning our goals we should always try to be specific in our aim. For example a non specific goal might be:
“I`m going to have a good season this year”
Where as a specific goal would be:
“I`m going to score 600 runs this year”
When setting your goals try to make them SMART goals:
So my 600 runs this season for instance is:
Specific – as it`s a specific amount of runs
Measurable – well I have 13 innings in a season to gauge how I`m going
Achievable – Yes, it has been done before
Realistic – Yes, I open the innings for my team
Time Measured – Yes, I have identified a specific duration or period to achieve my total
Be prepared to adjust your goals slightly (mange your goals) either up or down as the season progress. If for example you start the year with two hundreds then clearly you could increase the total to say 650 or 700 runs. Similarly if the first couple of games are washed out or you start the season with two scores of 0 then don`t be afraid to adjust the total to say 500…
Ill managed or unrealistic goals can lead very quickly to increased pressure or lack of motivation. In these examples imagine how much pressure a player would place on himself if after three rounds he is still to score a run and knows he needs to score unrealistically heavily to make his goal or alternatively he could lose interest in the game very quickly knowing he can`t reach his target..
If you haven`t ever tried setting goals before give it a go. They can be fun and set correctly can really drive you to get out of bed on a morning. Keep in mind as with most new things, don`t try to do too much too soon… managing one or two goals properly is much better than mismanaging four or five. One of the biggest mistakes a player can make is creating too many goals and ending up not really paying attention to any of them after the novelty wears off… Give it a go you`ll be amazed at the difference they can make to your season!!
Good luck to everyone,