A Father’s Advice – Pass It On!

Happy Thanksgiving from Jim Tunney

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS November 21, 2016 # 620 Up Next…A Father’s Advice – Pass It On!

After further review…“Heads Up!” my dad used to call out, alerting me to such possible dangers as an errant pitch traveling toward my head when batting; or a car approaching as I was learning to drive. He must have blurted that phrase a thousand times. The message resonated with me to this day. Being an admirer of my father, I adopted the same warning as a parent and coach, and whenever I could alert someone of a possible risk.

Playing football, as well as all sports, the word concussion was never an issue (although I did split-open the skin on my forehead once when tackled). Football season brings a renewed emphasis on injuries, especially concussions. Football played by high school, college, and professional athletes is a physically violent game. Yet with all the apparent risks of physical damage, e.g., concussions, broken bones, nerve degeneration) most former players say they “would do it all — again.” However, some of those same players have grave concerns about their sons playing football at those levels. Parents should also be heads up for their sons and daughters who play soccer, a popular sport among young athletes. The caution here is the use of “header” shots to redirect balls traveling 30-40 mph.

“Count your blessings” was another of my father’s great reminders. There are times in our lives when we get down on ourselves. When we do, my father would come forth with this, reminding me as well as my sisters and brother that there are “too many good things happening” in each of our lives to let disappointment control our attitude. However, for me it was a fortunate childhood. Each morning during weekends and summer, I would rise early, go on a bike ride, and look for neighborhood friends to play ball. Growing up in Southern California, we only had three seasons: football, basketball, and baseball. There was always a game to be played. And while we always played to win (“You play to win the game” said Herm Edwards, friend, colleague, former NFL player and coach), it was playing that was our goal.

Will you pass along my father’s advice: keep your head up and count your blessings? And in that process – enjoy and be grateful for your Thanksgiving Day as I am for your readership.

To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

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On Being Disillusioned!

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS November 14, 2016 # 619 Up Next…On Being Disillusioned!

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS November 14, 2016 # 619 Up Next…On Being Disillusioned!

After further review…As our country completes a way-too-expensive political campaign that reached absurd levels of character assassination, how do we recover from the divisiveness that took place? Is that what politics is all about? Former Wyoming Senator Alan Simpson once defined politics: “’Poly’ meaning many and ‘tics’ meaning ‘blood suckers.’” Did all that negativity serve any useful purpose? Will that kind of diatribe continue from either those who will lead our government or from those who are on the outside complaining about results?

How do we teach our young that what they witnessed was superficial political posturing that often obscured or ignored what should be the true nature of candidates? How do we create a positive climate that builds and strengthens the type of personality that promotes strong character? Can sports give us the answer?

Many in the sports world have proclaimed: “Sports build character.” Others have countered: “Sports may not build character, but it can certainly reveal it.” Sport coaches can have a direct influence on building an athlete’s character. Moreover, teachers in classrooms and parents at home have that same “coaching responsibility” as well. In my book, “It’s the Will, Not the Skill,” we write “Excellence is good, exemplary is better.” We teach character better by example than by preaching. The values of teamwork, diligence, attention-to-detail, faith, hope, self-sacrifice, trust, honesty and the like are best taught through modeling.

Reacting to a defeat (see recent election results) in a hurtful, negative way by a coach only tells his T*E*A*M that is the way to behave in their future. Losing? Sure, it hurts and that feeling of hurt or loss often makes it difficult to move on. But moving on is what life is all about. When coaches or people take the “why me” or “it’s not fair” position, they limit their strength to improve the lives on their team.

Jack Canfield, co-founder and author of the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” enterprise teaches the E+R=O philosophy (Event+Response=Outcome); i.e., the positive response you take will determine the outcome you will have. It’s your thoughts about the event, not the event itself, that determine the quality of your future. The best coaches and teachers employ that method through the idea of bouncing back. In any sports defeat, its loyalist and backers need to come together to remain strong.

Will you understand that defeat will come to us all, but it’s our personal strengths that determine the outcome?

To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

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Inattentional Blindness

USP NFL: GREEN BAY PACKERS AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS S FBN USA WA

On the TUNNEYSIDE of SPORTS November 7, 2016 #618 Up next… Inattentional blindness!

After further review…”Inattentional blindness.” Huh? What’s that, and what’s it got to do with sports? Inattentional blindness is what magicians use to successfully perform their illusions. It’s as old as Houdini himself. (I was going to say “as old as Giovanni Livera,” the best magician/speaker I know, but Gio’s not that old.) Inattentional blindness makes us miss what our eyes can plainly see, if our attention is focused elsewhere; the brain filters out visual information it considers secondary to its current analysis of the sensory world. Have you ever sat close enough and watched intently as magic was performed “right before your very eyes?” Your eyes never wavered, but you still couldn’t figure out how the magician accomplished his feat. There was something you missed. When I once asked Gio “How’d you do that?” he responded “Very well”—his pledge to secrecy.

Some may refer to magicians’ tricks as “misdirection.” Maybe so, but inattentional blindness is not the same. Misdirection causes you to look at a new subject. Inattentional blindness is a phenomenon that explains how one can fail to perceive what one is looking directly at. So, what’s the sports connection?

You may recall a Monday Night Football game between Green Bay and Seattle on September 24, 2012. That game yielded the infamous “Fail Mary” pass made by Russell Wilson of the Seahawks on the game’s final play. Just prior to the “simultaneous catch” in the end zone that gave the victory to Seattle, there was an obvious offensive pass interference committed by the Seattle receiver. Now, I’m certain that the replacement official whose responsibility it was to call that OPI foul knew what offensive pass interference was, and probably had called it many times. He was looking right at it, but didn’t see it. Several thousand viewers saw it. So, why couldn’t the official? Inattentional blindness. He was focused on the reception he expected to see, not what led up to it. And so the shove didn’t register. The missed call hastened the return of regular officials from their lockout, and illustrated the difficulty that can complicate even the plainest calls in hindsight.

A lingering question is how do we, in our daily lives, avoid inattentional blindness? In this age of constant, rapid delivery of information, we are tempted to think that “multi-tasking” is the way to go. But in fact, our brains don’t work that way. They focus on one thing at a time, and prevent potentially distracting information from entering our conscious awareness. So, for example, talking on cell phones or texting while driving can “hog” attention away from other vital signals, and the dangers of that are well known. Magicians exploit this phenomenon for our entertainment. We can train ourselves to minimize it to avoid the pitfalls of ‘tunnel vision.’

Will you continue to shift your attention in order to see all of the important things that are right in front of you?

To contact Jim, go to JimTunney.com or email Jim@JimTunney.com.

Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports

Be sure to get Jim’s book ‘Another 101 Best of TunneySide of Sports’ by clicking this link or using the email above to contact Jim directly.

These TunneySides take issues from real-life situations and relate them as inspiration for the betterment of others.

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