Why I’m Blowing Up My Longest Held Career Goal

When I was around the tender age of 20, I plunged myself completely into the world of football, and the pursuit of a full-time, university-level head coaching position.

Back then, I had just become the video coordinator for the McGill Redmen football program. Generally speaking, my life was going through a huge upswing: my marks in class were improving, I was dating this really awesome young woman, and my side hobby of house music DJing was picking up steam. Many things in my life, at least during this brief moment in time, were looking up!

After several difficult semesters in university that saw my marks fall precipitously from the kinds of grades I’d been used to as a high school student, my attention shifted from aiming to become a doctor (still the quintessential goal of many research university science students) to becoming a paid football pro.

I didn’t know it at the time, but this career goal made absolutely no sense whatsoever! At first glance, going from seeking a job title of “doctor” to “university head football coach” may seem fairly simple, especially when you’re just in your early 20’s. However, there is a very significant difference in how one goes about attaining these roles.

These next two statements won’t surprise anyone. A doctor typically goes through many years of university-level education and practicum training before becoming a qualified, regulated professional and member of an order of physicians. A university football coach is chosen by – mostly based on their experience and how they present themselves in an interview – an academic institution to lead its football program.

What makes these two pathways so different? To me, it’s not the obvious difference in education. It’s the words “is chosen by,” in the case of the university football coach, that puts this career goal – by definition – outside of the locus of control of the individual. Put another way: it is for someone else to decide if you are a university head coach, not you.

How To Become A Sports Coach (Even If You’ve Never Played The Sport…)

Have you ever wanted to coach a sport? Were you once an athlete who played a game, and then decided that coaching could be a vehicle through which you could touch and impact others? Have you been a fan who adores everything about a particular sport’s existence, and want to take your passion one step further and get involved in the action? Are you ready to move from the crowd to the bench, or from wearing a jersey to a whistle? Buckle up, because this post will help show you the way!

Before going any further, let me try and put to bed a common misconception that to be a sports coach you must have first played the sport previously. This is false, and is just a self-imposed limit that you have put on yourself. I don’t blame you for it – society reinforces this notion frequently! However, just because you have not formally done something yourself doesn’t mean you cannot discover the knowledge base, techniques and tactics needed to teach yourself (and others) how to do it!

Does personal experience help? Yes, it absolutely can! Having lived what you teach or coach can provide you with unique insight and credibility – a must-have characteristic of all leaders.

The Expense Report – 2016

OK, this should be fun! This post is the first of an annual series that I will publish, usually around this time of the year. It will be pretty much what the title alludes to: my total expenditures from the previous calendar year, with comments on what I would like to reduce/change/improve going forward. But before I go any further, there is one big question that I’m sure a bunch of you out there are asking right now:

“Why on Earth is this guy doing this??”

The rationale behind this kind of post is pretty simple – it’s an accountability piece. It’s for me as much as it is for anyone else (although it may also be a decent demonstration of how to build simple budgets…for those who are in search of a way to do it!). It’s a demonstration of what a person who has early financial independence as a goal can do once their brain is wired to pursue its achievement. My approach and my openness isn’t anything new and it’s the modern father of frugality, Mr. Money Mustache, who has inspired me to be so forthcoming. I’ll give some secondary kudos to an up-and-coming millennial blogger, Gwen from Fiery Millennials, for her work on publishing monthly status reports as well. I admire her honesty and sense of humour when talk about this subject!

Note: the name of this report doesn’t have the word “income” in it. For the time being, I’m not yet comfortable publishing these kinds of numbers. That may change one day though…

My process isn’t perfect: although Mint.com allows me to track all of my electronic transactions, I’ve let $800 in undefined cash purchases slip through the cracks. It’s rare that I use cash, however, so the impact of omitting some of my purchases isn’t huge in the grand scheme of things. Still, it does prove that I have something to improve on as I track my spending! I typically use cash to pay for things such as the occasional dry cleaning bill, some haircuts, the odd drink, and the (very) odd cab ride, so those are the areas of spending (laundry, grooming, alcohol & transport) that would have reflected my use of cash.

Upon further review, I found one final loophole: I spent approximately $300 across a range of random purchases, including things such as a (now-cancelled) newspaper subscription, some kitchen items, as well as a few music downloads. I’m going to add this amount (and the $800 in cash spending) to my final 2016 expenditure total toward the end of the post.