Quotes I Came Across This Week

This week is a dry one, but the Medium Show must go on.

When things get hairy like this I always scratch my archives. Thankfully, I found something, again. This is a little blurb I was putting together earlier this year during the peak of the COVID-19 lockdown uncertainty in South Africa (May). It was called ‘Quotes I Came Across This Week’ and I will keep the title.

It is a random collection of quotes that inspired me and educated me then, and even now. I hope they can do the same for you.

“Stand up straight and realise who you are, that you tower over your circumstances.” — Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou is a hero and her words never fail to inspire and uplift. Stand up straight, be strong, and keep your head held high. It’s easy for us to forget our strength and achievements. We’ve been through bad times before and we survived them — so let’s just keep on moving.

Kaka on Cristiano Ronaldo: “It’s incredible, he shows every year that he can beat himself. Every year he has motivation to keep going, to keep scoring and be the best player in the world.

“Sometimes when you have won a lot of things in your career, it is normal to slow down a little bit so maybe the motivation in your mind and mentality is not easy.

“But he is so incredible like (Lionel) Messi because these guys have won everything they could and they still want to win, they still want to be the best. It’s incredible.”

I love Cristiano Ronaldo, I love greatness. CR7, Lionel Messi, LeBron James, Serena Williams, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, it is a blessing to live in a time of such incredible athletes and to be able to enjoy them for so long. That is probably the most amazing part.

All these heroes have given us two decades of greatness and they are still going strong. It is something we should appreciate wholeheartedly because it obviously won’t last forever. We must relish their greatness to the maximum while we can.

“Closed mouths don’t get fed.” — Shabazz Muhammad

“Everything can be taken away from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.

- Viktor E. Frankl

Man’s Search For Meaning by Viktor Frankl is one of my favourite books.

“According to Seneca, the Greek word euthymia is one we should think of often: it is the sense of our own path and how to stay on it without getting distracted by all the others that intersect it. In other words, it’s not about beating the other guy. It’s not about having more than the others. It’s about being what you are, and being as good as possible at it, without succumbing to all the things that draw you away from it. It’s about going where you set out to go. About accomplishing the most that you’re capable of in what you choose. That’s it. No more and no less. (By the way, euthymia means ‘tranquility’ in English.) …

So why do you do what you do? That’s the question you need to answer. Stare at it until you can. Only then will you understand what matters and what doesn’t. Only then can you say no, can you opt out of stupid races that don’t matter, or even exist. Only then is it easy to ignore ‘successful’ people, because most of the time they aren’t — at least relative to you, and often even to themselves. Only then can you develop that quiet confidence Seneca talked about.”

- Ryan Holiday, Ego Is The Enemy

Marcus Aurelius: When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive — to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.

Thabo Senong, head coach Lesotho national team:

“Some players are naturally intelligent and they are gifted, some players can be more talented than the coaches in reading the game, we need to allow them to help us. Coaches don’t see everything, we are not solution providers of the team; we are members of the team.

It’s putting the ideas on the table and seeing which ones can work. Let success be player-centred. I want the players to play for their ideas, for the country and the goals that are set by them. We are just guiders to help them set the right goals.”

This one of the best football quotes I have come across. Times have changed. Players have a voice and the best teams are usually player-happy teams.

Ernst Middendorp, former Kaizer Chiefs coach

“I’m now 26 years in the professional soccer coaching side, and when you start coaching professionally you have ideas and you must be able [to understand it]

“Let’s talk about what is modern. There was a big coach somewhere worldwide who said once, ‘Modern is when you pick up points; when you’re successful, then you’re modern.’

“I have a little bit of an additional idea around it — you have to have the understanding that coaching five years ago, and coaching today is a totally different job.

“We are dealing with another generation of players — the generation Z, being busy with social media, day-in and day-out; 24 hours; seven days.

“And, if you want to approach them in a way that you’ve done it five or 10 years ago, that’s definitely something totally different. The communication has to be done differently.

“So, it doesn’t matter which era you’re from, if you want to have a place in coaching, have to understand that you are a global player and that you are able to communicate with players, because communicating with players from 5–10 years ago to 2019 is a totally different story.

“You also have to understand the coaching resources we are getting these days — researching models — the (Raymond) Verheijen model in terms of conditioning and strengthening of tactical periodisation that came into the market in the last 10–20 years, it’s colossal.

“I think this is something, and it doesn’t matter which nationality or era you are going into, you must understand you have to know how to do it, and if not then you’ll have no place being on the market — that’s 100 percent for sure.”

I love football, the game and its coaching. It is always illuminating to hear different perspectives on how to approach the game. Every year I discover that there is so much to learn.

A finally, three quick random quotes:

“A good football team has got to be like a racehorse. You gotta have the blinders on, going straight ahead.” — Ernie Adams, Director of Football Research, New England Patriots (NFL)

“The days you feel like a rusted piece of metal are the days you become stronger mentally.” — John Cena

“There is a superhero in all of us, we just need the courage to put on the cape.” — Superman

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Teboho Molapo

Teboho Molapo

Part-time athlete, part-time coach, part-time writer; fulltime believer in life. | #MolapoKTM