Focus on the Whole Team: Finally Beat Your Rival…The Holidays!

October 31st, 2017 | by Walt Whitfield
Focus on the Whole Team: Finally Beat Your Rival…The Holidays!


In college athletics, every team has a dreaded rival. That team from across the state. A longtime conference foe. And the rivalry sees no limits. The rival college administrations may compete for the same employees. They often take part in facility wars to attract better coaches and student-athletes. For health around this time of year, everyone’s rival is the holidays. And this rival throws everything at you. Here are a few tips to beating the holidays.

Embrace the Rivalry

The game is scheduled. So, get the tickets printed. Supply the concession stands. Turn on the lights and embrace the rivalry. In other words, embrace the holidays. They come every year. Yea, they bring about mixed feelings. Some enjoy the time, while others stress. Some continue their normal schedule, while others take vacation time. The most important thing is your mindset. Mentally accept the holidays as a positive fun time. Daily affirmations are a great way to begin each day on a positive note.

Help Others

As a member of a collegiate athletics department, you know too well what it means to help others. It is one big department, but there is compartmentalization. Each staff being its own team. The academic center staff. The athletics communication staff. The athletics training staff. But even then, each staff is pushing the entire department forward. During the holidays, find ways to help others outside of your bubble. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Write personal thank you cards. Visit the elderly. Giving back is essential to your own happiness.

Remember Moderation

During my article Surviving Tailgate Season, I spoke about ways to survive the fall football season. Like tailgating, the holiday season comes with food and fun. It is expected. What shouldn’t be expected is overindulgence in the food or drinks. Sweets, soda, and alcoholic drinks are all items that add calories to an already big plate. It is important to find ways to moderate. A good way is to learn how to build a healthy plate. A healthy plate consists of ¼ healthy meat choice, ¼ healthy carbs, and ½ fruits and vegetables. Also, between meals only drink water. Keep the snacking for the special days of the season.

Get Over Not Being Perfect

With any game or department project, perfection is the goal but never reached. There will always be issues. Some expected. Some planned for. And some unforeseen. Don’t fret. It’s the holidays. It’s a time to enjoy life. Great food. Family gatherings. Plan to stay on pace with your health goals, but don’t over think all decisions or stress over a little overindulgence from time to time. The true test is not if you eat the slice of pie or not. It is will you get back on your routine after a slight step back.

The old rival is on the schedule every year. It’s a game you will look forward to or dread. Set the right mindset before the holidays begin. Gain self-satisfaction through charity. Moderate your diet outside of the key events. Don’t fret over the holidays not going entirely your way. The holidays should be a fun time, free of stress. remember that your behaviors will determine your outcomes. 

Walt Whitfield About Walt Whitfield
Walter Whitfield is an employee wellness consultant and founder of Lavoro Workplace Wellness where he helps businesses improve their workplace through employee wellness strategies. He has worked with corporations like Chevron, BP, and Seadrill. Walter is a former college athlete for Louisiana’s Ragin Cajuns where he competed in cross country and track, winning Sunbelt conference titles in the 3k Steeplechase and 5k. He is married, has 3 kids, and loves all things New Orleans Saints and Louisiana’s Ragin Cajuns.

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