Celtics coach Brad Stevens on the best version of ourselves

As the NBA prepares to begin training camps for the 2018-2019 season, Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens said, ““It’ll be a great opportunity to start afresh with a brand new team, though we do have a lot of guys back, and see if we can be the best version of ourselves.”

Teams often ask me after collaborative team building activities, “are we the best?” And I can also sense that they often wonder, “are we really bad?”

In other words, how do we rate? How do we compare? How do we stack up? This is one of the amygdala in the brain’s sorting techniques to try to keep us safe. It’s usually not helpful.

Better to be who we are. There’s no one like us. There’s no team like us, for better and for worse. Each individual on the team brings strengths and passions unique to that person. And each time is a unique combination of those strengths and passions, and weaknesses and blind spots, whether people on the team are brand new, or they’re veterans.

Three helpful steps for any team to be your best

  1. Stop comparing with other teams (including teams you used to be on or previous versions of this team)
  2. Ask, “who are we, really? What’s unique about our people and our team collectively?” Now we know our identity, what we have to work with.
  3. Lastly, let’s be the best version of ourselves. Now we have something real to aim for. Not the best overall, and not avoiding being the worst overall. Let’s see if we can be the best version of ourselves.
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