We were about to play the first football game of our 10th grade season, and we were thrilled. We had never lost a game since our team began playing in sixth grade.
We simply didn’t know how to lose, because it had never happened before.
Arrogant didn’t come close to describing the general attitude of the team. Despite the coach’s repeated warnings, we knew victory was as good as ours.
Then the final whistle blew. There we were, standing on the field in complete shock over how we’d just botched it. We just messed up not only what could have been an undefeated season, but an undefeated career.
We were left in a place far from where we intended to be, with no idea how to get back on track. What we needed was a reset.
Some things had gone terribly wrong that game, and our coach let us know it on Monday. We’d gotten sloppy. We didn’t run fast, didn’t block well, and didn’t tackle at all. He quickly reset the whole team by working on those three things. Run, block, tackle. Hour after hour of fundamentals. Simple as that.
Until that loss, we had no reason to care about how well we were doing the fundamentals. That was little kid stuff we mastered years ago. None of those basics were important now, right?
I’m so thankful my coach knew better. He knew if we’d get back to mastering the simple fundamentals, we’d start accumulating wins again. Which is exactly what happened. He reset our thinking, which reset us on the path we’d meant to travel all along.
Parenting is no different. There are basic truths about parenting that from time to time, we neglect, and we need to reset. We know our kids need nutritious meals, but we fall into the pattern of fast food and mac and cheese. What our menu needs is a reset.
We know our kids need time with us, but we let other stresses steal us away. When we find ourselves watching hours of TV instead of investing in the relationships we claim as priorities, that’s when our family time needs a reset.
Just like a good coach, a good dad will re-evaluate how the family is doing. He’ll take input from players and coaches, not just rely on his own observations. And when some things aren’t working, he brings them (and more often than not, himself) back to mastering the fundamentals.
What do you consider a fundamental in your family, and what does your reset look like?