The play clock is down to 10 seconds. It’s 4th down. You’re inches from the end zone and a game-winning touchdown with no timeouts left. Your opponent is four points ahead, so a field goal is not an option. At this point, the only thing that matters is, “What play are you going to call?” Here are your options:
- Do what’s safe. Hold on to the ball and run it in past the obstacles there to keep you from winning?
- Take a risk. Throw the ball into the end zone and hope for the best?
- Get creative. Do something completely out of the box like a series of lateral passes to confuse the defense before running or throwing the ball into the end zone?
So much is riding on this last call. Your decision doesn’t just determine whether you win or lose the game, it could affect the entire season and so many other lives. It could determine whether your season comes to an end, whether you get a bonus, whether the coaching staff stays in tack for the next season, or even whether you and your teammates are let go.
Regardless of whether you win the game or not, the lesson is to be intentional with the decisions you make.
TIP: If you make good plays throughout the year, you minimize the pressure on yourself to become a magician when the play clock is down to the final 10 seconds.
However, if early and throughout the game you make bad calls, underestimate the opposition, make sloppy plays that result in constant turnover of the ball, then you might doubt yourself at a crucial time when you need to be your most confident.
We can all learn life lessons from football. My spiritual coach, Coach Ken Coggins, fires me up regularly in his booming, gritty coach’s voice with this simple reminder: “It’s 4th and inches all day, every day! Stay strong!”
I want to encourage you, as you close out your 2019 year and think about your goals for the new year, to treat every day like it is 4th and inches. Be intentional and make good plays not just at the end of the year, but throughout the year, so that you set yourself up to win.
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