Jan. 13, 2022

“Walking Soccer” and Self-Control with Tony Everett of Pure Game and Personal Best Coaching

“Walking Soccer” and Self-Control with Tony Everett of Pure Game and Personal Best Coaching

In Episode 64, Tony Everett, Founder and Chief Play Maker of Pure Game, Founder of Personal Best Coaching, coach, and footballer, talks with Phil about Pure Game’s work with vulnerable children in Southern California, learning self-control through...

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In Episode 64, Tony Everett, Founder and Chief Play Maker of Pure Game, Founder of Personal Best Coaching, coach, and footballer, talks with Phil about Pure Game’s work with vulnerable children in Southern California, learning self-control through walking soccer, goal setting, his life coaching program, surrounding yourself with people smarter and better than you, the importance of writing your own eulogy, and leading from the middle. Specifically, Tony discusses:

  • His story, how he developed his passion for soccer, leadership, and how he got to where he is today (1:36)
  • The mission and vision of Pure Game, and how his team is working with youth in Orange County using the beautiful game (4:16)
  • Why football (soccer) is such a powerful tool to reach kids around the world (6:01)
  • What lessons he is teaching the children and how he uses football to do so (8:14)
  • His life coaching program and how he is helping adult leaders to flourish (13:57)
  • How he uses lessons learned from football in his life coaching (17:23)
  • Leading from the middle and bottom (21:48)
  • The Tiff and Tony show and what he hopes to teach through it (25:40)
  • How he uses the lessons she has learned through soccer in his marriage, parenting, and other areas of his life (29:28)
  • His recommendations (35:08)
  • -AND- Tony flipped the script and interviewed Phil for a surprise question (27:30)

Resources and Links from this Episode


Phil: Welcome back to how soccer explains leadership. Thanks again for being a part of this show. Thanks for your download. Very excited as always to get to our guest here in a minute. I'm Phil Darke, your host and Paul Jobson is my co-host. when we get together every few episodes he always gets a little jealous that I get to interview all these great people.

You know, that's part of the drill that we have created. but it, folks, I know that you're excited to get to the guests, Tony Everett, with Pure Game. We're going to learn all about that. And just really how he has used soccer in this coaching program that he has just started recently as well.

But before we get there, I just want to make sure that you remember that you can go and rate and review this. You can also reach out to me if you have any guests that you'd like to get on the show and, and be a part of this conversation that we're having. And so you can do that.

phil@howsoccerexplainsleadership.com. You can also reach out to us on the Facebook group. If you're not a part of that already, you can go ahead and join that. But without more from [00:01:00] me on all those preliminaries, Tony, how are you?

[00:01:04] Tony: I am doing very well. Thank you. And thanks for having me on the show.

[00:01:07] Phil: Yeah, definitely.

Well, we always like at the beginning of every interview, just to get to know who we're talking to a little bit, you know, and briefly hear your story. I mean, obviously we could talk for a few hours about your full story, but you know, the, the brief version of it and really how you developed a passion for soccer and leadership and how you're using that.


[00:01:26] Tony: So Tony Everett originally from England and moved over here actually in 2000 I was into, I was actually selling security systems back then. That's what brought me over here. It's completely random. Kind of conversation with my boss in California while I was working in England. And he said, he's got an opening in Orange County.

So I was like, sure, come on over. And then he was actually coaching his daughter and son in a YSO and I went up and watched it one day and I was like, what are you doing? Cause that's [00:02:00] not the game of football. And I grew up, I grew up playing. I grew up playing the game. I've played all my life for as long as I remember.

You know, I was eight when I first started playing, I think so just grew up playing pickup soccer or pick up football as we would call it. Sunday morning football, pub football. I joined the Royal Navy and played and played from a ship in the Navy. So just been around the game all my life. And so when I came over here and started seeing what Mark Meyers was doing with his daughters and girls on the soccer field, I was like, what is that?

So I then just stepped into. Helping him out. And I was assisting him helping the kids kind of learn the game a little bit more, which then led me to stepping into the world of club Soccer was working at all as a part-time gig. Obviously I was still doing my a full-time role and I've been coaching and around the coaching world ever since how I got to where I'm at today.

Is that when you're in the club world, in Southern California, it's really expensive [00:03:00] and really competitive. And I just didn't agree with what was going on at the time. The cost of it all and, and all that good stuff. So I wanted to find a different way of doing it and make it more inclusive, bring more people to the game.

And, and so I set up a, an organization that actually used street soccer as a format to engage these kids. And we were playing in parking lots and streets and wherever we could play. And it was all in Santa Ana, in inner city areas. And I found that through the game, I could start teaching life lessons. I could start teaching about respect and responsibility and compassion, cooperation, encouragement all of that good stuff came out of it.

And so. I sat up Pure Game as a nonprofit to teach kids just about life and how they can engage in life. So it started off with the younger kids and moved into middle school, then moved into high school.

And that's when I started to really kind of focus on the leadership.

[00:03:55] Phil: Yeah. So tell me more about pure game. What is its mission? The vision [00:04:00]and really just how you are working with the youth throughout orange county and other parts of Southern California.

[00:04:06] Tony: So we we understand that kids are really lacking. That authentic, meaningful connection. So pure game will provide 100,000 kids with mentoring hours. Meaningful connections and a character education program. So these kids can actually connect with their life purpose. They can start to pave their own pathway to success and actually create a little bit of meaning in their life and understand that they do have meaning they do have a purpose and that's how they can engage in the world a whole lot differently than what they currently are.

So that's what we're after. That's what we're trying to do. We partner with schools. Community-based programs who were serving kids and run in school and afterschool programming. It's all based on street soccer format. So we switched things around every five minutes and teach character, life skills [00:05:00] leadership through the game.

And it's our field champions. We call them, there are staff, there are caring mentors and they make these personal connections, right? These meaningful connections with kids. And that then. Brings a certain confidence and courage to the kids with our character education program. And they engage in the world differently.

There, we challenge them to take what they're learning on the field, into their school classroom, into their home and into their community. So we're making, we're making these people's lives better and they're, they're understanding what it means to engage in the world around them in a positive.

[00:05:37] Phil: And why do you think soccer, football to you?

Of course. And your native tongue is such a powerful tool for the kids. Why soccer? Why is it a powerful tool in the context of these kids' lives

[00:05:51] Tony: first off, when you think of the game, right?

Football was created as a poor man's sport. Actually, I take that back. The original football way [00:06:00] back when in England was a gentleman's club type stuff, and it was the rich that played it, but then it soon got taken over by the working men and it became the poor man's sport. Anyone could play it anywhere they were.

And if you go around the world now, They're playing it in the streets. They're rolling up little pieces of trash and calling them the trash balls and they're playing anywhere they can. And so I think that's one reason. So it's a sport that can be played by anyone. Anywhere, you don't need a whole lot of equipment to play this game.

It's also very active, so everyone's moving, everyone's running around and if you in it, right, no one needs to be, you know, Messi or Ronaldo. You can just play for the fun of. And just like I did, when I was a kid, it was street soccer. Just pick up soccer and we used to play for the fun of plan.

Sometimes there'd be eight of us and sometimes there'd be 28 years. We didn't care. It was just fun, laughing, creating community, [00:07:00] creating connection. So that's part of the. Is the play aspect for kids and they've done the research on this play. Movement creates more connections in the brain and then more connections in the brain means there's more learning going on.

And so when you can just run around physical activity, more connections and then laugh with the kids and just encourage them through sport, it's a, it's a win-win for everyone. Right? These kids just get to laugh, smile, have some fun. And that's the big thing about pure game. there's no real skills.

Drills teams or leagues. There's no real coaching going on. It's just a ball, the kids, a couple of goals and we play. And what we figured out is creating that positive environment and just encouraging them for what they've done well is, is the key behind it. And and they laugh and they just always want to come back and play more, which is which is fantastic.

[00:07:56] Phil: And so what are some of the lessons that you're teaching them and how [00:08:00] do you use soccer to actually teach those lessons?

[00:08:04] Tony: Yeah. So the best example, two of the best examples is we teach self-control. So how do you teach a 10, 11, 12 years? Have you teach an adult, actually, self-control where you play walking soccer.

That's how you teach themselves to control. And so what we do, we bring the kids in, circle them up and say, okay, we're playing walking soccer. And you get a lot of moms in complaints because no one wants to play walking soccer. But you bring them in and tell them. And then say, there's a consequence. If you get caught running and it's typically like a star jump or a pushup or something like that.

And then we play and you get these kids walking around the field, but they are so tempted to want to run. And some of them do and they run off and get the ball. So of course there's your consequence. Five-star jumps, whatever that looks like. And then as the game goes on, There's more control and kids are walking more often and you go to [00:09:00] see someone run and you can stop the game right there and say that feeling you had when you went to run.

That's called self-control now, what does that look like in your classroom? What does that look like in your home and what does that look like in your community? So it's a real life experience that they can actually feel what it means to have self-control and then the other one is goal setting. We play a game and we just remove the little pug goals and of course the game breaks down into chaos because

kids don't know where they go in and what direction they're aiming. And some kids give up a lot of grumbling and moaning. But when again, you bring them in to do the debrief you sit there and ask them what's the purpose of the goal? Well, in a game of soccer, it gives you direction and purpose and meaning to play the game.

Well, Hey Presto, why would you set goals in life? Because it gives you direction and meaning and purpose. And so that's why you set goals. So there are some of the two examples that that are easy to explain and, and the kids get immediately.

[00:09:58] Phil: Yeah. You know, I [00:10:00] remember talking to my oldest son he had a yellow card.

He was on a yellow and he made that stupid tackle that got them the red card. Right? So even teaching that in the context of these lessons, I think that's what we do, why we do this show, right. Is to be able to help people see these life lessons rather than just getting mad at him and saying, man, how could you do that?

You were stupid. You knew you had a yellow, you went in on that. And, but it's like, no, how can we use this to say, this is actually a really good life lesson that sometimes in life we're we're in situations where if we don't exhibit self-control. And not make that tackle proverbial tackle. We could get in bigger trouble, much, much bigger trouble.

Right. You know? And so those are things that I love how you're doing that with, intentionality obviously. And boy, I've been thinking of my ten-year-old right now. If I were to try to get him on a field and walk, there's no way. I mean, he'd last about three seconds before he'd run. And I imagine it's harder and harder for the people, for the kids who actually play the game right.

To they're just going crazy. They're like, [00:11:00]

[00:11:01] Tony: I can't stand playing it because I chase the ball the time it's the worst game in the world seriously. But, but it really works well to teach these kids, you know, just this, just the experience of what, what it feels like to have self-control and what it means.

Cause you can tell a kid not to eat candy all day long. Right. But he doesn't feel anything. Right. But get that feeling of, oh, that's what it feels like to have self-control that it would it feel, that's what it feels like to control my body in a way that I've got to walk and not run. So that's what it would feel like to stop me putting my hand in the cookie jar just to stop.

Right. And, and that's kind of the idea behind it.

[00:11:41] Phil: Absolutely. I love that. I mean, I just think, again, my, that same 10 year old son and his classroom too. And I think what happens is, and going back to that, the kids who play in or the better the player, the harder it is. Right. So I think we're wired to do certain things.

And it's hard. We've talked about this, the last conversation we had just about the way we're wired, the [00:12:00] personality styles we have, we can learn in certain situations. We not, can, we have to learn that in certain situations we need to hold that back. We need to have self control to not do certain things.

Like my son he's naturally, you know, just fun. He's, he's wired to have fun and get up and be active and talk, and I'm wired very much like him. So I get it. But in a classroom you have to exhibit that self-control and so these are, yeah, so I, I, you know, I don't want to belabor the point, but I think as I could totally see.

That part there. And then obviously the goal setting. I mean, that's something that soccer has so many chances. You know, I'm gonna call an audible here right now and we're going to do, we're just gonna use football the rest of the time. Cause anytime I'm talking to someone from. The UK, I didn't, I just feel wrong calling it soccer.

So I might slip and call it soccer, but we're going to go with football as the default here to, I want to welcome you and be hospitable to you. Cause I know every time you say soccer, [00:13:00] probably even when you're teaching and you've been here for that long, it's still cringe a little bit. so with football, I mean the, the, the lessons we can learn about goal setting, not just about scoring.

But about, you know, being able to have that first touch to be able to do these different things and how that, where that can teach us about life. So anyway, and I know that's something that has to kind of segue into what you're also doing in addition to pure game and part of the way that you're helping to fund some of the things you're doing in pure game is doing this coaching.

You're coaching people in life, coach. So, can you just talk about that? And, you know, first of all, what you're doing, what the program that you have, I don't know, program's the right word, but how you're, how you're coaching leaders and what that looks like in what you're doing now.

[00:13:47] Tony: For sure. So we know many of us like our competitive driven people, right. We love to win. And when we're losing that winning edge, when we transition or when we're [00:14:00]unsure, when there's no certainty or clarity, we can then get very confused and not know where we're going. So I set up an organization called Personal Best Coaching.

And the essence of it is, is we provide the frameworks and the skill training to actually give the direction and the purpose that people need to engage in life and experience the success that they're looking for. Not that success is the final destination, because success for the people that I coach is the journey.

Right? And so if you've got a goal that we talked about this about goal setting, if you've got a goal to earn a million dollars, if you never earn a million dollars, but you earn $850,000, right. That's still a massive way along that pathway. It's the journey of success that we're focused on. And so we create the clarity, the meaning, the direction and the purpose for these people to get involved.

We've got a program called Hero on a Mission which sets them up for starting with the end in mind, start with a eulogy, go into a [00:15:00] storyline. We then do a ten-year five-year one year plan. We do a whole gap goal setting program and engage these people differently in life. It's no different to what we're doing Within pure game, we work with, with the kids on the football field, in business coaching, we work with bigger kids in the world of business. The parameters are still the same. When you think of a game of football, you build the play up from the back. You put it through the midfield, you put it through the forwards and you score a goal.

It's the journey of scoring a goal. And you come across obstacles and hurdles along the way they call defenders and the opposition and the referee and all that. There's no difference in, in working right? You start with with playing out in the back. You start slowly, you work through the midfield, you come across obstacles, you've got to overcome them.

You got to get around them. You've got to use your skills to understand how to develop that you get it to the forwards, and then you shoot on goal. Sometimes you miss. Sometimes you score. So it's using my knowledge [00:16:00] of the game of football and what I've learned there and coaching and leadership within that, to then bring it to the masses of business people.

My, my target audience really is the, is the former athlete or the transitioning athlete. If you're an athlete, that's transitioning out of a professional career, you've dedicated your life. And you know exactly the routines and you know exactly the framework of which you've got to perform in to be your best here.

And your secret source is typically your coach, right? Your coach or your trainer. That's, what's got you to where you are, but when they transition out of the professional world and into kind of more. Civilian street, professional business world. They lose all of that framework. They lose the coach, they lose all of the skills training.

And so that's the idea is I want to provide them on that and I would be their secret source to help them become successful.

[00:16:54] Phil: Yeah. So with that, there's obviously so much we can mine on that, but the one thing I really want to hear from you is [00:17:00] how you are using the lessons learned from.

Playing coaching training, pure game in this life coaching and how you're able to again, use the life lessons from the game.

[00:17:13] Tony: That's a great question. When you think about it. So, think about the, the game of football, right? You, you have a coach who then gives you a skills, new skills program to work on, and it's the implementation and the execution on those skills.

So you've got to execute you. Can't just be given a skill and then suddenly you're a master at it. It takes practice and it takes intentional practice and it takes implementing and executing. So if I was to coach you through a business skill, it would be exactly the same thing. I'm going to check in with you and say, Phil, did you do that skill today?

Did you do the training today? Did you do what I asked you? And you've actually got to start applying yourself to do the work, the coach isn't going to magically make you brilliant. You've actually got to do [00:18:00] the work. So you can take a lot of examples of that, right? Knowing your strengths as a football player, I know I'm not the most skillful, but I can hit a 30, 40 yard pass on a dime.

So my strength is passing the ball. So if I'm going to get the ball, I'm going to look to pass rather than do a bunch of fancy skills. So that's me playing the game of football at my best in the world of business. I'm going to look for my strengths and play the game of business at my best. I know I'm a great network.

So I'm going to use that strength to go out there and network. I really don't like social media and the conversations, so I'm going to avoid that and I'll get someone else to do that. I'll get a teammate to step into the social media business. Right. And so I think that's, that's a lot of where it comes from.

There's there's no, I can't see the difference between coaching someone in sport and coaching someone in business and executing in sport and executing in business. [00:19:00] They're the same. They're, they're the same ideas.

[00:19:04] Phil: Yeah, too. And I think when you look at that, when you talk about strengths, the reality too is, you know, you can't just say, well, I can put a ball on a dime 30, 40 yards out.

So I don't dribble, so I don't have defend. So I don't shoot, of course not. Right. I mean, that's ridiculous in the same way in the world. Right. There's going to be times you need to play out a position. There's going to be times you need to do things that are not your strength. I mean, you know that we both run small non-profits that's we have to continually be working, you know, playing out a position.


[00:19:36] Tony: I have to be making social media

[00:19:38] Phil: posts. That's exactly right. I know. As far too often too. And folks out there, I apologize for my social media posts that probably are breaking for the use of social media, marketers. I'm probably breaking every rule of social media when I do so, so I apologize, but I think that's important for people.

I mean, I talk to people all the time about that, that, and also there's something I'd be curious to hear, hear you. [00:20:00] Talk about one of the things I talk about with a lot of people, and you understand this in the context of even the work that you're doing, a lot of the work that you're doing is developmental, right?

You're not, you don't get a lot of attention. It's longterm. It's not easy to measure success. And I, and I, I liken that to the football pitch. Right. You have your. Your defenders. And I laugh when I look at fantasy football, you know, premier league. And I'm like, how do you measure a defenders? They're like making up stats right, right.

To, to get them. But you don't get a lot of attention. I mean, I think it's changing a little bit, but, but for the most part it's rare virtual Vandyke, I think is an exception recently. And Ruben DS is an extension exception of the sleeve, but most on the center backs, aren't getting player of the year.

They're not out for balloon day or there you get the strikers who are the flashy they're scoring goals. That's easy to measure success, all these different things. But when we talk about that in the context of leadership, I think too often, we get caught up in the [00:21:00] stats of these quote unquote success mate metrics, which are.

But what about those organizations? What about those people that are the role players that are the foundational fundamental doing the developmental work that's necessary in our society? And how do we get them to be able to understand that their role is. Important, but it's critical to the longterm success of anything.

So, I mean, do you get what I'm going there and did you agree with that and how are you able to encourage leaders that may not be in the flashy industries or organizations?

[00:21:38] Tony: Yeah. So it's, it's a tough position, right? Because you're right. Your flash strikers are always the one that wants to get all the attention.

It's kind of like a lead singer in a band. It's always the lead singer that gets the attention, never the drummer. But the drum is just as important as the lead. As is the defender, is it as important as the striker goalkeeper everyone, right? Everyone's [00:22:00] important role. But I think it's knowing this comes back to my definition of leadership.

I think one of the biggest definitions of leadership is knowing yourself, right? Because if I know myself, I know how I can turn up. I know how I can show up. I know how I can bring my strengths to the table. I know how I. Help find someone to bolster my weaknesses and bring them onboard into this. So I think knowing yourself and knowing the role you play in the world is important.

As I say, on the hero, on the mission program that we've got, you've got to know what your purpose is, what your mission is, because then when you wake up in the morning, even if you're not. The lead or the Stryker, whatever it is, even if you're not scoring goals for for a major team is still playing a role.

And if you know your mission in that role, then it gives you the purpose to strive to move on and to do your best in the role that [00:23:00] you're in. You create your story right? Every day you put words in your story. By the actions that you take, you can create a very boring story. If you so desire, it's up to you.

But if you know your mission, if you know the part you've got to play, and if you become a hero in your story, then it doesn't matter what you do. This is how I would encourage them. It doesn't matter what you do. Doesn't matter how much in the shadows you are. You're still making a difference in your story.

And then therefore the sphere of influence that is around you.

[00:23:33] Phil: Yeah, definitely. that's something that I I thought a lot about and any to try to, how to encourage, especially, you know, some of the younger kids that you see have tremendous skill sets and, and you see that a lot. The, the position that I coach for a lot of times is goalkeeper.

You see that a lot with goalkeepers, which is it's funny because at the higher levels you realize the importance of it. And a lot of teams, if you talk to the coaches, they'll start with a center back and a goalkeeper, and then they'll fill the rest of the positions, And you're [00:24:00] seeing, especially in the girls game, fewer and fewer and fewer people playing.

And I think a lot of it goes to parents saying, I don't want my kid playing keeper cause I want them to be on the field so they can touch the ball and they can get exercise and they can do all these other things. And even the girls who want to play. They're not letting them, I've seen that a lot with parents.

And, and I, I do think a lot of it goes to what we're talking about, where they're not getting the attention. They're not getting the, whatever it is. Right. And I think that's an issue. And I think that's an issue in our society as well. That if people aren't getting the attention, they just say, okay, I'm going to go do something else.

And even though they're really good at what they're doing do you agree with that? Have you seen that? Yeah. Yeah, I

[00:24:37] Tony: do. It's also a tough position to play as well. Right? You gotta have a little

[00:24:42] Phil: crazy to play key to

[00:24:44] Tony: that. Hey, I played in Delwin and I was nuts. But it, the problem is if you're a forward and you make a mistake, no big deal.

If you're a goalkeeper, you make a mistake. That's a big deal. Cause everyone's now looking at you. Right. And so it's, it's, it's [00:25:00] equivalent to life. If you've got a position of a high profile position and you make a mistake, then, then you're getting sitting. Right. And so, yeah, it's, it's interesting to see kids and what they want to do and how they want to play in these different roles.

[00:25:14] Phil: Yeah. I want to talk a little bit to switch gears a little bit over COVID I think it was co actually I think it was before COVID that you started just a little, some video series that you guys did with the pure game. You talk a little bit about that. What your, what your hope is for those and share with people how they can, how they can check them out.

[00:25:30] Tony: Yeah. Yeah. It's the Tiff and Tony show and it was during COVID right at the beginning of COVID. It was one of those situations where a sports-based school partnership in-person program. Right? So COVID hit, all of the schools were closed down. We went from 65 schools to zero and we were like, okay, what do we do with that stuff?

So we pivoted really quickly and put all of our content on video until we were creating games on videos. We were sending them to those, to our school partners. So our kids [00:26:00] could still be active and engaged. And hearing their field champions in message and character education and stuff. Well, one of the young ladies who works for PO game is a lady called Tiffany and she was really good in front of the camera.

And so I said, Hey, you know what we should do. We should start the Tiff and Tony show. And we had a laugh about it. And we said, what we could do is we can take our character education and our life skills education, and we can talk to each other about it. We could do it on, on zoom and away we go. And so that's how.

And we've, we've interviewed people on there now. We we talked about life. We talked about all sorts of leadership and education skills and social, emotional learning, mental health decision-making. And the idea behind it is we really do want to use it as a tool that kids can, can get educated on goals.

Why would you set goals and how do you go about it? But not only that, we can actually talk to some parents as well through this medium, and they could get to understand what it means to [00:27:00] be the parent of a teenager, because we Lord knows parenting a teenager is hard work. And so what's the best way to go about that.

How do you let your teenagers. Make choices without receiving all of the really bad consequences. So they, they get to understand that they're in charge of their life and they have to make choices. So that's, that's the difference on your show? Like find it on our YouTube channel and I think the YouTube channel is called pure game Nish.

I think PO game was taken, so we had to go with pure game ish. But yeah, we're, that's what we, what we're about. It's, it's an education channel and but we also take the opportunity to interview some of the special guests and find out their, their meaning on life and much like this. Right. And I asked them, I asked everyone a very important question.

Which is a part of our wisdom champion programs. And it's a simple question. And I'll ask this to you, Phil, and you can, you can think of an answer. You could travel back to your younger self teenage or pre-teen years. What piece of [00:28:00] wisdom would you give yourself? How old would you be? Oh, wow. Hmm. I'll let you answer that.


[00:28:10] Phil: no, I'm thinking, I'm thinking. Well, how about this? How about, I'm gonna ask you the next question and then I'll think about it, then I'll answer it. Okay. So, so folks, the Tiff and Tony show you can check that. And the cool thing about that is obviously with how soccer explains leadership or for this episode, how football explains internship where obviously the target audiences.

The adult young adult adult, but yours is really more for the younger, the youth, which is your target audience for pure game, which I love. And I think it's so important. A lot of parents have told me, they listen to these episodes with their kids and they talk about them, which is great. I think some of the topics may be a little heady for some of the, some of the kids.

Yeah. Still encourage you to do so and to be able to talk, talk with them, cause most of them can handle it, but with these are very much targeted for the kids and I encourage you to do it. You can just check. I mean, sure. If you just Google Tiff and Tony [00:29:00] show, it'll pop up and you can find a Pure Game. But but the next question I have for.

And we'll also have those in the show notes. So we'll have the link to the Tiffin Tony show in the show notes. So if you can't find it in a Google search, then you can go ahead and go to the show notes for this episode. You can find them there. But what are a couple of lessons that you've learned directly from the game of football that you have used in your marriage and parenting?

[00:29:18] Tony: For me the game of football whenever I played. And I've been one of those players that have played every position I started off as goalkeeper forward. Then I went to winger and then I went to central med and I slowly went back to rightful back. And now I play central defender and sweeper a role.

And through it all communication is, is the single biggest lesson that I've learned through it. When you've got a team. That communicate with each other when you've got a player on the team that communicates well the team runs that much better, that much smoother things, less things go wrong.

And so, Communication within as a, as [00:30:00] a dad. My kids will probably tell you I over-communicate, because I want to tell them everything and I want to ask them everything. I don't want to find out everything. And, and so my wife would probably tell you I don't communicate enough. But then that's because she wants to in on logistics right.

Of, of day-to-day things. But if it it's, it's about that open communication and knowing. Just what's going on in the world. Right. And what's happening. How do you feel, right. Is it question that really few people ask more importantly, few people want to listen to. Right. And so I think that the communication within soccer is good.

Not just, not just saying it, but listening as part of the.

[00:30:41] Phil: No, definitely. I mean, communication is one of my I was modeling my major in college, but it's it's, I, it sounds like you described my house right there with my wife and my kids too. There was a funny Babylon bee headline. I don't know if you're familiar with Babylon bee, but it's just a funny satire thing.

And it said It said child prepares for four [00:31:00] hour conversation after asking dad a simple question. And I started laughing. I said, it's all my kids and they, they got a kick out of it. But and my wife similarly wants to go on a date. How are you doing? Oh, well, what's going on this week? What do we got going on?

Going back. I'm going to answer your questions. That was good. I'm glad we were able to do that. I'm glad I can, I can control this thing, you know, but no, and it's funny, I kind of, it's kind of cheating because I have a 10 year old. Who's like my mini me. So I would, I would say, and I watch in him and I go, man, I can tell myself when I was younger.

Cause my son is basically me. Yeah. And I think w two things really one is, and I, and I say this to anybody who asked me about leadership advice too, but I would love to see. My self this when I was younger I don't know is a great answer when you don't know something, rather than trying to fake it, rather than thinking, you know, everything rather than saying, I know, I know, I know.

Which is what I used to say. It's what my son says when it's coachability, right. To say, you know, I don't know, and I need to learn, right. It's a posture of humility. It's a [00:32:00] posture of learning to have that posture rather than. I got it all figured out and I want everyone to make sure I know everything because then going into school again, I would listen better.

You talked about knowing the people don't want to listen to that answer. Yes. The people who often want to tell everyone what they think struggle with listening. Yes. And that's me and that's my son and it's why he struggles in a lot of ways. And I think the thing with, I don't know, also is it shows humility to those who use.

Yeah. It shows those. You have that posture of learning. People want to tell you, and if you say, I don't know, it triggers in your head to go. I need to learn this. I need to go figure it out. And in today's age, especially today, especially today, when we have the internet, if you don't know something, you gotta be careful what you search on the internet sometimes.

And you gotta be careful your sources on the internet sometimes just cause it's on the, just because it's on the internet, doesn't mean it's true. I gotta be careful because this podcast is on the internet, but but it's to be discerning. Yes. And then, so that's absolutely something. [00:33:00] And then the other, the other thing is winning is whizzing winning isn't everything.

Why we're doing the show. There's so much to learn from the games about ourself, about life, about leadership. About self-control about, I mean, basically through the spirit, everything that's there, we can learn in this game. Right. You can learn through it if we, if we're looking for it, if we're learning. So they're obviously related that posture of learning, posture of humility and winning it as at everything.

Because as a ten-year-old kid, I can tell you winning was everything for me. Right. I'm surprised I have friends left from my ten-year-old years that I tell my son, I go, trust me. It's it's you don't want to lose friendships over whether you want a stupid little pickup game at the, at the park. Yes. But it seems like that is the end all be all to life.

Whether you're going to win that little pickup game at the park. Got it for certain, [00:34:00] for certain kids. So, anyway,

[00:34:01] Tony: so that's brilliant. So what I'll, what I will do now, Phil, I will actually take those two pieces of advice and I'll give them to kids in our program and I'll give you some feedback. So that's part of the loop of what we do within the wisdom champions.

So they can, they can go, I've got a landing page. You can give him wisdom. We'll give it to a kid and then we'll tell you how they accepted it. It's it's a phenomenal cycle.

[00:34:23] Phil: No. That's awesome. Now, if you want to just take that and you don't have to interview me now, you can just put that on there. It'd be great.

So, now that's that I love that. I love that. I also love when, when British folk say brilliant, it's just, that's something that I just, I can't say it when I say brilliant, it just doesn't have the same effect and impact, but that's okay. All right. So as we're winding down, The, the last question we ask everyone, what have you read, watched or listened to that has informed your thinking on how, how football?

I almost said, I almost said the word, how football explains life and leadership.

[00:34:58] Tony: I'll start off with, with what I've read. It's [00:35:00] called The Habit of Coaching and it's actually just a book with seven basic questions in there, and it's not talking about.

Coaching people per se, it's just becoming, it's just about becoming a better leader. And it's a phenomenal book. The questions are awesome. First question is what's on your mind, which is a great leading question for anyone. And so when you ask that of a soccer player, when they've walked off the field, It can go all sorts of places, especially won or loss.

Right. Hey, so what's on your mind and you asked that question of players and it's a really great way to kind of get into the mind of your young player as they walk off the field. Couldn't leave this show without telling you I've watched a Ted Lasso. He's brilliant. I love that show. I think, I think that.

That show on its own does a great way of explaining how football and life interact with one another. And there were so many lessons on that show that you can learn. And it's funny as all get out as well. I love it. It's a brilliant show. And then what have I listened to? I actually, [00:36:00] so my certification as a coach comes through Business Made Simple and I listened to the business, made simple podcast and they've got a book.

Business advice in there that I love listening to. So, I think when you listen to some of the stuff that's on that program and you think about this, the game of football, there's so many similarities between business and playing a game of football. It's crazy.

[00:36:20] Phil: absolutely. Well, I mean, we wouldn't be doing this show if we didn't think so.

And we didn't agree with you on that. So, now obviously we love Ted lasso on this show as well, which is why, if you like. And you haven't listened to our halftime. And post-match shows that, that talk about the different episodes of Ted lasso encouraged you to do so, because we go through and talk about Paul Jobson and I talk about those life lessons that we've learned, and hopefully you have, and if you have more that we don't talk.

Folks share those with us, but Tony, thanks a lot. I, I I'm actually, I'm excited. I haven't, I haven't read that book. So I'm going to go check that out for sure. And Coaching Made Simple as Donald Miller, correct on the

[00:36:58] Tony: business made simple [00:37:00] business, made simple business, made simple as Donald Miller.

He he was the writer of the StoryBrand book as well. So.

[00:37:07] Phil: which is a great book. for marketing and it's, it's a fantastic book, so, all right. Well, thanks, Tony. Very much appreciate you and what you're doing. And I get excited every time we, we chat. Cause I have so many things that, you know, we have we're so like-minded in so many ways and I have no doubt we'll we'll continue working together on different things over the years.

So thanks a lot for being a part of. Thank you very much. All right, folks. So, once again, thanks for your download. Thanks for being a part of this show. I encourage you, like I said, at the beginning to reach out to me, if you have any questions, have comments, you can do so phil@howsoccerexplainsleadership.com, but as.

We sign off by encouraging you to take all that you're learning from this show and use it, to help you be a better leader, to use it, to help you in your marriage, in your parenting and in every area of your life, And most importantly, that you take everything you're learning from this show and you use it to remind you that soccer really [00:38:00] does explain life and leadership.

Thanks a lot. Have a great week.