New Day Resolutions

January 7

As we head into 2020 I’ve been asked about my ‘New Year’s Resolutions’ for 2020.

Unfortunately, I’m a bit of a grinch on this subject and I’ll explain why:

As a young, inquisitive fellow, I once asked legendary Australian swim coach, Don Talbot, what his resolutions were to receive the following response:


“Son, anybody who has the luxury of saying this year ‘I’m going to do this or do that’ has been coasting through the other days and months of the year.”


Before turning and walking away to more important things.


My first reaction was ‘what a grumpy old bastard’. However, it has since put a dampener on the tradition for me as upon reflection I realised what a profound statement it was on his approach to coaching and life.

Part of our philosophy here at is not to advise but to implore all of our coaches to self-evaluate their performance as a coach not on a yearly, month or weekly basis, but a daily one.


When the alarm goes off in the morning one should consider it their duty to be the best they can be on that day and that anything less is unacceptable. This over time should be grounded into oneself so that self-improvement becomes automatic.


If as a coach you are asking your athletes for total commitment, then it is you who needs to set the example first and be equal to such commitment.



Don Talbot with swim legend, Kieren Perkins.


As my grumpy yet wise mentor pointed out to me many years ago – if a certain day or holiday can make you strive for something better than you already are, then you are not currently at the required level of commitment on a daily basis to produce excellence within your squad. That applies in any field or part of your life – including (for our AG athletes) striving for a balance in your sport for a better quality of life for you and your family.


For 2020 and beyond I challenge all of you to join me in that first 5 minutes of the day, every day to galvanise your thoughts to being the best you can be for the rest of your waking moments in the day.

Best wishes to all for health and happiness in 2020.