Split, Aim, and Shoot to Score a Goal in Life

See, catch, cradle, run, dodge, split, roll, aim, shoot, score. The sport of women’s lacrosse. A game in which is described to be played in a process or, better yet, steps. Steps in which you as the player, along with your teammates and coaches, create this game plan in order to succeed to your greatest ability. However, there are two sides to lacrosse in my eyes that make it a true art to succeed: practice and game time. An interesting question arises in my head, “How do I differentiate these two from one another?”

Define Practice: A time when the steps can be followed. A coach tells you what to do, and you do it. There are no outside factors targeted against you. A captain tells you to run a play, you run the play, exactly how it supposed to go. Memorize the plays, go over them in your head and never forget them. Go to morning workouts to get stronger, go to the trainer to get iced, do this, do that… done.

Define Game Time: A time where the comfortability of following steps or the game plan gets questioned. You now have this outside force, (the other team), fighting against you. You always need to expect the unexpected. What if I’m face guarded? What if I’m double teamed? How does one become adjusted to stepping out of the game plan that was taught to us? Will I get a free position? Will I get benched because I messed up a play?

Look at the difference in these two definitions. In the practice definition, there are no question marks as compared to the game time definition.


My steps from start to finish:


Lacrosse: I walk onto the field to see how the competition looks. I take it in. I see how my teammates are adapting, how the coaches are acting.

Life: I see the opportunities I have for that day. I see how people in my environment are acting that day. I see what I am in store for.


Lacrosse: I see the ball coming for my stick and I catch it. I take control at the exact moment and the ball is in my stick.

Life: I catch the opportunity that is given to me and the process of executing that opportunity has now begun.


Lacrosse: I swing my stick back and forth while juggling the ball to get away from the defensive players on the other team. I cradle until I have a chance to make a move.

Life: I relate cradling to multi-tasking. I’m able to juggle a few tasks, with outside forces, while keeping the path to the end goal completely clear.

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Lacrosse: Clear the ball, get the ball on your side of the field.

Life: Take that task and go with it. Keep chugging along.


Lacrosse: fake the other player out, spin around them to get yourself closer to scoring that goal.

Life: learn how to fix a problem that comes at you head on. How are you going to stop this current obstacle? What are possible solutions?


HALT- all of a sudden when going through these steps in my head an outside force comes, and I am now double teamed. All players are on me. This isn’t what we practiced. How am I going to adapt to this situation in seconds? Will I do the right or wrong thing?

I like to compare this game to my life. How you can be completely ready for a situation? You practice, study, prepare, etc. for a certain event. But do you really know how that event is going to go when the time comes? The ability to be adaptable is one of the best lessons lacrosse has taught me to use in my everyday life.

Don’t be afraid to deviate from your original game plan. Being too scared of failure is not going to better yourself in any situation. If something isn’t going exactly as planned, pause, think and come up with the next step. Be adaptable to the situation. This way you can finish with that perfect shot to score the winning goal in life’s game plan.

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