Dear Carlton FC, the entire club – Admins, Board, Coaches, Players, Members, Supporters.
Adversity confronts all of us at one stage or another, sometimes multiple times. How you deal with it and overcome it is a testament to a person’s ability to rise above adversity. To become resilient and resolute in facing their adversity with a confident determination to shove it out of the way of progress. Carlton FC as a whole has faced adversity for the past twenty years. We have been pushed down, shoved out and had more quick, easy fixes than most organizations. This culture has become a part of the Carlton FC, and it needs to stop.
At the weekend, we all saw a game, that for us all, we would like to forget, but we should not. We are now facing the adversity of not being in a position that we all hoped we would be in, nearing the top eight. But how we chose to face and deal with this adversity will either break us or make us stronger. What will break us is if we decided to take the path that we have taken before and just cut out those that others deem are responsible for our performance. Will this make us stronger, more determined. NO! It will only weaken and show once more that we are not a club that is a strong and determined one to rise above adversity and conquer it.
We have to decide once and for all do we want to be defined by what has gone on in the past, or do we want to state that right here and now, we will accept adversity, and we will rise above it? This does not mean the continual calls to sack coaches, players, the Board, even the Admins; it means that collectively we have to stand up to the adversity we face now, accept it, and find ways to conquer it. To achieve this, we must have the mindset of solidarity, continuity and a belief that eventually this will pass.
I decided after the game to go on social media and see what supporters would post. To say I was disappointed is not valid; I was, quite frankly, not surprised because the response was well, expected and typical. Some called for Teague to be sacked. They called for the Board to be fired. They called for players to be thrown out. They berated, ridiculed, and yelled about how they will not support the club again as a supporter of many years. Some have said that they are tired of supporting a club that has not had much success in the past twenty years. To go on social media in any form and decide that you are the voice of what will make Carlton great again is naïve. Are we so arrogant that we think and believe that what happened when we were successful will continue after the adversity we have been through in the past twenty years? Do we really think that a culture of quick fixes by sackings will change the club? Has it proved so in the past? NO!
Calls to get Alistair Clarkson to coach is hilarious. He will never leave Hawthorn; he has stated that many, many times. Do you think Ross Lyon is the go because he got two clubs to a Grand Final but couldn’t coach them to win? Do you think that any player would want to come to a club that faces adversity, and their response to that is to throw out their coaches? Do you really think that as a club, this is the culture we should have? NO!
We need to change our mindset and become a club that firmly states to adversity, we will not let it determine our path, and we will face it and overcome it. It may not happen in a time frame we chose, but it will happen. Determination and a mindset of overcoming adversity are what makes a group successful. We need to state firmly as a collective that no matter what adversity we face, we will overcome it. We have the talent; we have the capacity to do that; we just need to understand more about how to step over that adversity line and shove it to the past. We need to sweep out the cobwebs that have been a part of our club for the past twenty years and change the way we look at ourselves as a whole. We must not be swept into this downward spiral of succumbing to adversity.
We have to change our thinking and face adversity with such a force of collective strength where our resolve and belief in our future will see us across the line. If that means waiting, then so be it. If that means that some can’t do it, so be it. It is they who will look back when the time comes that we overcome our obstacles, be successful, and they wish they had been a part of the journey. I know that the club is not quite there yet, and a bit more tweaking needs to be done, but we have the foundations.
In this round, The Indigenous Round, its a celebration of how a people overcame adversity to change their future. Everyday they face adversity, but they do not give in or give up. We too can do this. Change your mindset, change your future. Make adversity the tool to change the past and enrich the club’s future. Being with solidarity, continuity and a belief in what you can do. All of us!
P.S I don’t care what the media, or commentators, say about the club or people in the club. It’s their view, their opinion and in the end, it means nothing more than white noise.