Don’t Check the Scoreboard - Christine Kane

Basketball coach Roy Williams never checks the scoreboard of any game he’s coaching until the last 8 minutes of the second half.


He says it’s because the score doesn’t always tell the truth of how the team is doing.

You might be playing lousy in the first half – and you erroneously think all is well because you’re winning on the scoreboard.

Or you could be losing – but the opposing team is hitting bad shots. You’re playing great – but you just need to make a tweak or two.

So what does Williams look at?  Well, he checks the stats at half-time to see what needs to be improved, tweaked or re-strategized.  He looks at what he can do.  He finds out the score at half time  – but he doesn’t make any changes until he sees how the game is really being played.

Why does this matter to you?

Well, because the score can make you lackadaisical. The score can make you scared. The score can make you miss what tweaks you need to make.  The score can slam you into your emotions and fears so fast that you forget your power to strategize and tweak the one thing you DO have control over:

The actions you take next.

In other words, in the middle of the game the score is not always an indication of how you’re doing.

Same goes for, well, pretty much everything.

Maybe your scoreboard (the scale, your income, your sales, your list size) isn’t at the exact number you want it to be –

But don’t let that number fake you out.

Instead, check your “stats” – by asking yourself:

1 – What have I learned during this process so far?  How have I grown?

2 – What changes or tweaks do I need to make?

3 – What questions do I need answers or guidance about?

Then, ask yourself this:

Have I done everything I could do TODAY to make this situation better?

If not, what is the next SINGLE step that I can take right now.

Don’t check the scoreboard. Just take the very next step.

  • Kaylee

    Thanks for the wonderful reminder Christine! A few weeks ago, after thinking about it for months, I finally started my own blog. It’s so tempting to check the visitor stats every day (who am I kidding, every few hours), but this post was a great reminder of why I shouldn’t! Especially at the beginning of this journey, the numbers are the last thing I should be worrying about. My only job is to keep writing. 🙂

    Thanks again!

  • Kylie

    Christine, this is exactly what I needed to read. I think that looking at the numbers, as they relate to my business, often really removes me from the heart and soul of what I’m doing. If I pay more attention to how I’m feeling, and give my business the love it needs to thrive, the numbers will work themselves out.

    Usually sports metaphors don’t resonate with me, but this one really does, because my partner is currently on a basketball team, and I see the players play vastly differently depending on whether the score seems to be in their favor or not in their favor.

    I can also apply this comparison to eating and exercise. It’s so much more nurturing to pay attention to what my body needs, and listen to hear that, than to obsessively check mirrors or look at the scale.

  • Laura

    Very helpful perspective! The quantitative indicators don’t always tell the bigger truth, as you write. Still, it’s tough to ignore quantitative feedback. One thing that helps me is to remember to measure progress in inches (or millimeters) instead of miles. Thanks, Christine!

  • Biz

    If not, what is the next SINGLE step that I can take right now.

    I have adopted a “Change One” attitude each Sunday when doing my Sunday Summit – I have added this question to my list: What is just ONE THING I can change this week that will help me get closer to my goals?

    I have found when you try to focus on too much, overwhelm sets in and nothing gets done, but if I allow myself just ONE thing to change, then it’s pretty amazing what else can be accomplished that relates to that.

    There is way too much that can happen up until half time that can change at the 2nd half, how many times have we seen that?

    I am with Lisa though, I do love stats, especially in my line of work, measurements are everything, but not just ONE measurement, cause that can plateau while another is gaining or losing, so you need LOTS of data in order to make an informed decision, not just the score board, or in my biz case, not just the scale.

    THANKS once again CK! YOU RAWK!!!

    • Biz


      Thanks for reposting this on your FB CK…it was kinda crazy to see my comment from all the way back in April. I am so incredibly proud to say that I still follow that in my life, that CHANGE ONE THING mentality. I even incorporated it in my Get Your Thin On program. It rawks. Thanks again for being an incredible mentor and coach!

      By the way, I talk about you tonight in my GYTO call…HA! ::giggle::

  • Gil Pizano

    This is a very good point to make Christine. Looking at the symbolic scorboard when things are going well or when they aren’t will only feed a person’s emotions rather than both their emotions and their logic. Roy Williams is sending a very good message to others by his example. Hopefully more people will see and understand that message and take it to heart. Having been the type of person in the past who has been caught up in the emotional frenzy that can occur when looking at the scoreboard, I know I’ll be taking this message to heart myself.

    Thanks for sharing this Christine!

  • Lisa Larter

    Great article Christine! The one thing I would add is when you do check your score, measure the right thing.

    I am one of those stat trackers – I love numbers, measurements as a sign of progress on how I am doing. I also like to interpret the meaning. Yes, I admit it, I use and like Excel.

    What I notice a lot of people do is they measure the wrong thing.

    Instead of measuring net profit in their business they measure sales. While cheering over a great day, week or month in sales is fun to do, the number lacks merit until you know what your expenses were.

    A snapshot is just a pulse check. It is not representative of the big picture, or the end game. When taking time to measure – measure what is most important so you can align your intentions and your actions with that result.

    • Christine Kane

      And you use your moleskin to do it! 🙂

      Thanks Lisa – this is so right on, as usual. It’s all about measuring the right thing and then discovering what it means and what tweaks to make. This is something that is learned over time – and I’m still doing just that!

  • Anna Barlowe

    Just what I needed to hear today, thanks! I think the main thing is to keep following your bliss, regardless of the score, because nothing else has the potential to succeed than the thing you love doing most. So the question “Am I enjoying this?” is perhaps more relevant than anything else. I try to keep that in mind at all times.

    • Christine Kane

      Anna – “Am I enjoying this?” is always a tough one for me especially when I’m leaving for the gym in the morning. In those cases, my INTENTION always trumps that particular question – because I enjoy the result of the thing I don’t feel like doing in the moment. (And I’m willing to put up with those inner-tantrums briefly!)

  • susan

    Great article! Yes….when I check up on blog stats, newsletter stats…I know it often brings me down. I realize I am wasting time when I do that. So, I change my focus and get moving in the direction that takes me out of “stuck” mode and into the next wonderful thing I will do!
    thanks, Christine! ( you writing machine!)


    • Christine Kane

      Susan – when i first began blogging, i was a big stat checker. I gave it up REAL fast! (Much happier now, btw.) Now, i have people on my team who work on those kinds of things and just report back. MUCH better process!

      • Susan

        Yes! I think at the beginning…it can be exciting to see the numbers go up! Then, it begins to take over. I am beginning to work with a VA just as you have suggested and I am already seeing that burden lifting! I now have a place to focus my creative energy…while knowing the work I have already created is growing with the support of another who really knows what I do:)

        Loving the UYB program, btw!

  • anna k.

    Thanks for this – I really appreciate that nudge! I’ve been too caught up in keeping score and I need to redefine my focus.

    • Christine Kane

      Anna – I call it “realigning” when I need that kind of “redefinition.” So important!

  • Sue

    Love the bball connection! I love the part about taking one SINGLE step forward. I tend to get stuck seeing the BIG thing I have to do and it can be paralyzing. Writing one paragraph, one newsletter, getting one new member….that I can do. Over and over. Thanks for reminding me!!

    • Christine Kane

      Thanks Sue! I write these things because I, too, need these same reminders! 🙂