One of my major concerns for reaching my goals has been that I have no idea whether I am good enough to make it. I have no clear bench mark that I can measure myself against and compare, whether I am in a position where I can compete with the players that play at higher levels. One thing that I always strive on is criticism and feedback and it has always helped me to push on with work life.
Whatever criticism or feedback I’ve received, I’ve used it as fuel to succeed. This way of thinking has skyrocketed my work career and helped me to excel in situations that I thought were beyond me. The same applies to hockey. When my coach in the Dutch league told me I wasn’t hitting enough, the next few weeks I worked on my angles and timing my hits right to make sure that I didn’t play myself out of the situation.
There are countless of other examples that I can think of where the coaches have told me something and I’ve worked on it to improve myself. When I got back to the game of hockey, I did it through inline hockey. When I started I had been out of the game for over two years and I was appalling in my first season as I struggled to make the wheels do what the normal ice skate did. I spent my first off season skating, often alone, in the university’s sports hall, practicing turns and pivots and making sure that I was able to manoeuvre on the skates. The next season, I went to score points in 24 consecutive games, just from being able to skate and move properly.
Now that I’m back on the ice, I know that my speed, shot and physical play are up to scratch, but I’m not sure of what my coaches expect of me and what role they want me to play. In the Dutch league I was playing a defensive forward role, basically being used in situations when we had to keep the puck out of our net and zone. With my new found scoring touch, I have been playing a more offensive game, which I enjoy. But at the same time, I’m not sure whether I’m supposed to be a goal scorer, a play maker or a power forward. I have been combining the elements of all three, but due to lack of feedback I’m not sure if I’m playing the systems right.
That’s no criticism of our coach, in fact I have nothing but respect for him as he takes numerous hours of his time to make sure we have a team to play for. It’s just my personal preference to hear feed back and learn where I’m going wrong when on the ice and also to hear from him what he sees my role in the team, whether it is play making or scoring.
Personally I see myself as a playmaking forward, as I tend to have a good vision of the ice in the offensive zone. I like to work out of the corner or from behind the net and find the rushing guys to pass to. Sure I like nothing better than scoring goals but I also need to play to my strengths.
I’m not saying that I want to be grouped as a passer and a set up man, because I do have the nose for the net. My goals are clear and I am sure that I will be able to translate into multiple points and wins for the team.