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10 Things You Can Do To Win The Game In The Second Half

Posted By: Mike Fitzgerald | Posted on: 07-07-2022


It’s July. Halftime.

The band is ready. The concessions are busy. People are stretching and talking about the highlights of the first half. And whether you’re winning or losing, all teams are huddled to make adjustments for the second half. They’re planning to do more of what’s working, less of what’s not making things happen, and making sure they’re on the right side of the final score.

How will you stand up to ensure success in the second half? What can you do to finish strong? You were in the game for the first half, but none of that matters now. At this point, nobody has won. But someone will– in the second half. In the next six months.

At halftime, there are two versions of you. There’s the one who ran onto the field six months ago with new goals and a new spirit. You were refreshed and re-energized. You had a game plan. You were driven, clear on what had to be done, and determined to make it happen. Maybe you’re nailing it at halftime…but the game’s not over. You’ve got this. And there’s the other guy– the one who, six months later, is a little tired at halftime. Maybe the plan isn’t happening exactly the way you planned. Maybe the other team was better prepared than you thought they would be. You may be one guy or the other, but you might be some of both. And you only have one helmet!

Surely your coach is saying all the right things and making the necessary adjustments to the overall game plan. But in the second half, it comes down to you. It comes down to how you execute that plan, do your job, and make things happen. Who you, and each one of your teammates, choose to be at this moment determines the final score. At halftime, think about what’s working and imagine how that will look if you 10x it.

Consider these 10 opportunities for self-examination, motivation, and inspiration.

1. Create a vision for the second half. In your head, fast-forward to the end of the game. Imagine running off the field, holding your helmet high. You won. You’re the champion. And then come onto the field for the second half with that vision at the top of your mind. Always.

2. Reset your goals. If you’re ahead of the game, play the second half like you’re behind. Beat the spread. Make your original goals a suggestion.

3. Be thankful. You’re in the game. Many didn’t make it this far. Thank God, your family, your teammates, and your friends for the opportunity. Live with gratitude in your heart and on your face in the second half. You never know when the camera is focused on you!

4. Accept the unacceptable. As if COVID wasn’t enough, we now have rising interest rates, economic turmoil, political infighting, war, and labor shortages, and the world seems a little less safe every day. Learn and live to thrive amid the turmoil. Wear the game face. Wear the uniform. Move the ball. Be an example of perseverance to everyone around you.

5. Run it like you own it. Like him or not, Bill Belichick has six Super Bowl trophies as head coach and two as a defensive coordinator. Before each game, and surely at halftime, he delivers one clear message to every member of his team, “Do YOUR job.” If we all do that, we all win.

6. Enjoy every day. Not just yesterday or tomorrow. Enjoy today. Smile. Be hopeful. Be positive. Be optimistic. It’s what got you to this game. Imagine how strong you’ll be when we emerge from the current state of world affairs if you don’t get mired in self-pity now! Unstoppable.

7. Choose action. Yes, we all plan for the second half, but did we do what we planned to do in the first half? Have we done what we planned to do? The second half doesn’t need to be a new plan. It needs to be the best combination of plans– the best of what got us to this game, what we did well in the first half, and what we still need to do to win. But plans mean little without execution. Do it. There’s only the second half left in the game.

8. Spend time with yourself. Don’t confuse mindfulness and self-awareness with a lack of drive. Pray. Meditate. Rest. Cook. Write. Relax. You’re no good to the team if you run onto the field already winded.

9. Master your moments. Only one-half of the game is left (until the next game). Did you give every moment of your playing time your very best? If you have an opportunity to look in the rear-view mirror, do it quickly because the road is ahead of you, not behind you. Own the time you have left in the game. Do your job.

10. Play like a champion today. Many people know that this sign hangs in the tunnel that leads the players to the field at Notre Dame. But most people don’t know that the sign originated at Oklahoma, a university that’s won roughly half the number of national championships (Notre Dame 13, Oklahoma 7). It doesn’t matter who hangs the sign. Play like a champion today.

Yeah, I know it’s not football season, but it is halftime. It’s easy to get caught up in the hype, give up halfway through the game, or otherwise think the game can’t be won. Emerge stronger in the second half. Do your job.

Think like a champion. Act like a champion. Be a champion.

Mike Fitzgerald 23 Posts

Fitzgerald MSI provides clients with a talent management framework that helps them make better hiring, advancement and talent development decisions. We identify how people process information and make decisions, predict how they are motivated, and suggest how well they fit into the client’s culture. We help clients select the right people, and accelerate the onboarding and assimilation process to make them more productive, more quickly. And we help clients improve relationships among and between teams, manage training and development gaps, and identify next-generation managers and executive leadership. Mike Fitzgerald, the president of Fitzgerald MSI, created the company in 2002 to help clients achieve peak performance to improve the client experience, improve efficiency and productivity and enhance revenue. Clients include E *TRADE, TransAmerica, Direct General Insurance, HarlandClarke, Cendant Corporation, State Bank Financial Corporation, ING DIRECT (now Capital One), CHD Meridian Healthcare, Radio-One, Wilmington Trust Company, Morris Bank, and more. Fitzgerald is a former chief talent officer, president and CEO, chief operating, officer, and sales, leader. He is a certified practitioner in the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI) and Hogan assessments. He’s been a consultant to Fortune-100 companies, startups, turnarounds, and served as an executive officer for companies as large as $4 billion. He’s an Economics graduate from the University of Massachusetts, a frequent speaker at industry events, and the author of three books on service quality, client experience management, and business communications.