As our first DPS presentation was wrapping up, I was feeling good about the messages we had given our coaches throughout the discussion of Module A, when one coach spoke up with a final question, “I’ve got a tough one for you,” he stated upfront.  As he asked his question many of the other coaches started to nod their heads as if they have experienced the same type of problem on their teams.  The question related back to the influence that an athlete’s home life and upbringing has on their ability to mesh with the existing culture and expectations of the team with which they are involved.  These athletes were negatively influencing the overall dynamic of the team.  The coaches portrayed difficulties in how to discipline these athletes without “giving up” on them like many people in their lives have already done.

I felt a pit in my stomach as the coaches discussed amongst themselves, I didn’t feel like I had the right answer, I felt like I couldn’t give them a sure-fire solution, I felt extremely uneasy.  How could I help answer their question when I have never experienced this particular situation myself?  I couldn’t say “I know how you feel” or “I’ve been in a similar situation and this is what worked for me”.  It became evident to me at this time how much room for growth I possess as a consultant.  Not only from a knowledge of concepts standpoint, but also from a standpoint of dealing with unfamiliar or uncomfortable situations.  Whether it’s a diverse population, a unique situation or an unfamiliar emotion, as a consultant I will undoubtably be faced with these “uncomfortable” situations.  It will be how I react to these situations that will further my growth as an individual and a consultant.

I guess it’s time to get “comfortable being uncomfortable”…