If you watch enough sports, you will hear coaches and commentators talk about making in-game adjustments. According to dictionary.com, the definition of adjustment is the following:

the act of adjust, adaptation to a particular condition, position, or purpose. the act of bringing something into conformity with external requirements: harmony achieved by modification or change of a position:


In life, there are times where we will need to make some adjustments or modifications. When you take the NBA for example, it’s easy for a team to go a big run. This is when they score a large amount of points relatively quickly. Some coaches like former coach Phil Jackson of the Bulls and Lakers would let these runs continue. Most of the time he wouldn’t call a timeout. He wanted to see how his teams would respond to the pressure. Other coaches however will often call a time out to prevent the game from getting out of hand. In life, we can be like these NBA coaches. Sometimes, we can allow awful habits to continue. We don’t make any adjustments. If we do, we’re often too late. But then there are times where we can see the hand writing on the wall and we call the timeout. We understand if not careful things are about to get out of hand FAST.

What kind of coach are you in your life? Are you more like Phil Jackson where you will let play continue until you can figure things out? Or are you like other coaches who will hit the pause button, and make the necessary adjustments?

Sometimes it may be good to be both! There are times when we can figure things out on the fly. We can adjust naturally without having to go to the sidelines.

While it’s great to know adjustments are often necessary, the bigger question is when, how, and what adjustments do we need to make? Let’s discuss these.

When to make Adjustments

  1. When you can clearly see that your plan is not effective. You’ve put in the necessary time and effort. The results are clear. This isn’t working.
  2. For example, if you continually make excuses as to why you can’t workout in the morning, it’s time to make an adjustment. Maybe it’s with your mindset. Or maybe it’s with the timing of your workout. Maybe the afternoon or evening is better.

How to make Adjustments

  1. It’s often good to get some kind of feedback from other people. Head coaches have assistant coaches. Coaches also listen to their players.
  2. Ask questions. Why is this not working? What am I missing? What might be a third option?
  3. Decisiveness. There can be fear moving in a new direction. You know a change needs to be made, but you’re afraid that you may fail again. That could happen. But you will have to be decisive in your decision. The best coaches like Bill Belechick will pivot when necessary. It often works to his advantage. Be decisive. It still may not work, but at least you will be able to see things clearly.

What to Adjust

  1. When an NBA team like the Golden State Warriors go off on a big 15-0 run, it’s clear the other team must adjust. But what exactly needs to be adjusted? Well, for starters the defense! It may just be a single player. Or maybe the scheme of your defense needs to adjust. The coach will have to pinpoint what needs to be adjusted. You don’t have to start over, just some small changes. When you get the proper intel from your team and coaches then you will know the what.
  2. The same is true in life. Sometimes the answers are pretty easy. For example, you’re gaining weight because you’re eating dessert every night. Adjustments are necessary, specifically the amount of sugar you’re consuming. You don’t have to do a complete overhaul. Pinpoint the problem and focus on it. Now there’s one more step.

Follow Through

  1. Coaches can write on their boards the best play ever! But players have to follow through with it.
  2. All of the adjustments can be made, but if you don’t run the play, very little will change.
  3. This step can be the most challenging. In our marriages, relationships, money, health, and careers. But if we don’t, we will not get to the place where we desire to be.


What adjustments do you need today? Take one aspect of your life and evaluate it. Get feedback from others. Look at the facts. Review the game film (your current size of clothes, where you’re spending your time, your time management, stress levels) and then be decisive with your changes.

Go out and hit the shot!

Get After It.

I Can Do…So Can You