Quotes for Coaching: Following a Loss

Experiencing a Loss is an Opportunity to Start Anew (Source: Vince Alongi)
Experiencing a loss is an opportunity to start anew. Quotes can help to frame a loos as a learning opportunity rather then a failure. (Source: Vince Alongi)

Dealing with a loss is one thing, gaining some perspective is another, and a quote can sometimes help with this task. Many coaches often struggle to find the right words after a loss and sometimes fail to recognise the opportunity a loss brings in regards to evaluation and reflection for the teams and its individuals. A loss still provides an opportunity for some goals and objectives to be completed and overall growth for the team to be facilitated.


As a coach over the course of your career, you will have some opportunity to experience loosing and having to make this an experience that refocuses a team and results in some worth, not just a negative feeling. Having the right tools, such as quotes, can help make this process more specific and purposeful.


The list of quotes below have been compiled for the specific time following the loss of a game.


  1. “Don’t let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was” – Richard L. Evans
  2. “Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour” – Truman Capote
  3. “Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th” – Julie Andrews
  4. “Experience is what you get when you don’t get what you want” – Dan Stanford
  5. “In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: It goes on” – Robert Frost
  6. “To be a good loser is to learn how to win” – Carl Sandburg
  7. “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  8. “When you fail you learn from the mistakes you made and it motivates you to work even harder” – Natalie Gulbis
  9. “There are only two rules for being successful. One, figure out exactly what you want to do, and two, do it” – Mario Cuomo
  10. “I’ve learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow” – Maya Angelou
  11. “Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it” – Dennis P. Kimbro
  12. “If you don’t like how things are, change it! You’re not a tree” – Jim Rohn
  13. “Winners lose much more often than losers. So if you keep losing but you’re still trying, keep it up! You’re right on track” – Matthew Keith Groves
  14. “Failures to heroic minds are the stepping stones to success” – Thomas Chandler Haliburton
  15. “Life is like photography. You need the negatives to develop.” – Unknown
  16. “Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm” – Sir Winston Churchill
  17. “Opportunity does not knock, it presents itself when you beat down the door” – Kyle Chandler
  18. “Success does not consist in never making blunders, but in never making the same one a second time” – Josh Billings
  19. “Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit” – Napoleon Hill
  20. “If you want to make your dreams come true, the first thing you have to do is wake up” – J.M. Power
  21. ““Scar tissue is stronger than regular tissue. Realize the strength; move on” – Henry Rollins
  22. “There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them” – Dr. Denis Waitley
  23. “I’d rather attempt to do something great and fail than to attempt to do nothing and succeed” – Robert H. Schuller
  24. “To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing” – Elbert Hubbard
  25. “”It is worth remembering that the time of greatest gain in terms of wisdom and inner strength is often that of greatest difficulty” – Dalai Lama


As always, remember quotes are a vehicle to start the discussion around a topic. They are not the solution or the destination for your reflective dialogue as a team following a loss. As a coach, you must follow up the use of a quote with an explanation and some sort of discussion within the group.


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Coach Riches has been working within the sport, business and education industries for many years. During this time he has built an extensive number of formal and informal qualifications. A firm believer in training and development designed to help people reach their full potential, relevant o their needs and functional to their industry environment.

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