While it’s no secret that I love pretty much everything about the game of football, one of the most intriguing parts to me is what happens during halftime – all the things we don’t see.
Time and time again I’ve watched a game where the outcome seemed decided going into the half due to one team’s dominance, momentum and of course, the scoreboard.
And yet, the second half end up looking like two completely different teams playing a completely different game.
A tale of two halves… all thanks to mid-game adjustments.
Can you think of a time or two where your first half had you pinned up against the wall? Where all signs pointed to a loss? A time when the momentum was all on the other side?
We all can.
The question for today, is how can we use our own halftime to create the mid-game adjustments we need to come out on fire during our second half and redefine the expected outcome?
The whistle just blew – it’s time for halftime. So what are you going to do?
As I write this week’s post, I’m finding myself desperately needing a halftime adjustment on one of my projects at work.
For a few weeks now I’ve been iterating on a deliverable with feedback from some executive leaders in the organization and not quite getting the ideal output they envision.
It almost feels like I’m trying to run too similar of plays on the goal line and keep getting stuffed by the defense.
Sure, I keep hearing we are close, but in reality I don’t think that’s the case. My offensive game plan isn’t quite getting it done.
It’s becoming clearer to me that I need to approach this challenge differently and create a momentum shift in my favor.
Time to make some adjustments!
Make Your Halftime Adjustments & Regain the Momentum
Sometimes we just get stuck.
No matter how much one approach or strategy worked for us in the past, something out of our control may have changed and rendered it ineffective.
We can either keep banging our head against the wall and expect something different to happen or for things to go back the way they were, OR we can take a moment and find our own version of halftime in order to adjust and create the momentum shifts we need to change the game.
Take a step back and get out of the weeds
Once we have a strategy, plan or routine in place that we are executing on, it can be difficult to lift your head up from time to time in order to see the bigger picture.
If your approach to something isn’t quite getting it done, stop what you are doing and sit back (literally or figuratively).
What is going on around you? What’s changed? What’s stayed the same? Take stock of what’s happening and then…
Assess what is working and what isn’t
There is no such thing as a perfect game plan or strategy. If you are taking action on something, then more than likely that means we are operating on imperfect or incomplete information (and that’s OK!). There’s nothing worse than waiting to act until you have all the facts and information because that day will never come.
Hold your game plan lightly and be quick to toss out what isn’t working while holding onto what is.
What aspects of your strategy or routines are working? What steps can you take to ensure they keep firing on all cylinders to keep your successes or positive results coming?
What pieces aren’t working? What can you tweak or what should you throw out completely?
Throwing things out aren’t indicative of a failure – it’s all part of an ongoing experiment. Simply make a list of what is and isn’t working and then determine…
What new information do you have now that you didn’t have before
Every good team game plans for their opponents based on past experiences and old game film. Who knows what your opponent has learned or how they have adjusted since that time?
At the half, great teams aren’t afraid to throw out their plan and incorporate the new information from the first half to reshape their approach for the remainder of the game.
So now that you’ve taken a step back to see the bigger picture, determine what is working and what’s not working, what new information do you have now that you didn’t have at the start of ‘the game’?
How can you leverage that new information and learning to make better decisions during your second half?
No detail is too small or insignificant. Even the smallest bit of information can change the game and put you in a better position to…
Given what you know now, how can you rethink your game plan? If you were starting from scratch, how would you do this completely differently?
Great teams, organizations and even individuals who continue to compete and win aren’t afraid to innovate and completely reinvent themselves in the process.
Focusing too much on the past will only leave you there.
Keep your eyes looking forward and downfield and take risks! Those teams that take informed risks based on what they’ve seen and learned can catch an opponent off guard and take control of the momentum of the game.
Never be afraid to change it up (partially or completely). Don’t let yourself, your team or your organization get stale. Shake things up and take control!
Adjust your strategy
Now that you’ve tossed out what isn’t working and have a wealth of new information, perspective and a forward thinking / innovative mindset, it’s time to adjust.
What are you committed to doing differently and putting into action during the second half?
Do you need to take a new approach on defense or get more aggressive on offense? Are you going to really shake things up and try an on-side kick to start the second half?
Create and define your new strategy and put it into action when that second half whistle blows.
Play bigger and prove the opposition wrong
The underlying message today is that despite the setbacks we may face during our game time, there is always an opportunity to change things up and adjust.
Giving up and throwing in the towel should never be an option.
Even if the end result isn’t what we wanted when the game is over, at least we can look at ourselves in the mirror and know that we gave it our all. And know that we went all in and played bigger in the moments that mattered.
We can always rise to a new level of performance and success if we are willing to believe it is possible.
No matter how dire the situation or how the odds may not be in our favor, never back down. Play bigger and prove the opposition wrong!
I know some may think, “who is the opposition?” I’m just trying to figure out a personal challenge or situation.
Trust me, it still applies – there is always an opposition.
The opposition might be a person, company, team or your own mindset and actions.
So the next time your first half doesn’t go the way you wanted it to go, go into halftime with the mentality that you can and will take what you’ve learned, change up your strategy, and come out ready to catch your opponent off guard.
Every game is a tale of two halves, so make the second half your half.
#unleash your Inner Athlete and own your second half!
Discussion Question: What are you struggling with in your life right now? What can your halftime look like and what can you learn from and use to adjust your approach to taking the game back over during your second half?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."