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IPv6Freely

Hockey Feels Like A Chore

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I’m not having fun anymore. I don’t know where to go from here. I can’t even explain how I feel. Every game just feels like “why bother?” 

Aside from the obvious “just quit” answer, what the hell do I do?

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I have the feeling with league games esp late ones. I have much more fun during pickup and drop ins.. mainly because there's no "commitment".  But I never have the why bother feeling in the middle of the games. 

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Howdy,

"Quit" is strong, but "take a vacation" is my recommendation.

Burnout is a real thing.  From what I've seen, you've been going hard at hockey for quite a while with no breaks.  Take a planned "palate cleanser" break for a few months and see how you feel.  Maybe that break is from teams you're increasingly ambivalent about playing for, maybe its from playing goal, or maybe its away from hockey altogether.

Its hard to take a break from hobbies we use to define ourselves.  I've done it a couple times in my life and its helped me be happier.  One thing I always struggled with was the "who will I be without that?" factor, as well as the "but if I want to do it again in a few months, I'll have given up a bunch of ground by taking a break".

For the first one, when I've taken a break I replaced the activity with something I was freshly excited about or just wanted to try out.  For me, that's the easy thing as I've usually had something else out there that looks fun but I haven't had time for.  That helps with easing myself out of "I'm a <blah hobby> guy", if the new activity starts taking over for me, but its still a bit of a blocker.  It doesn't need to be though... You'll still be a hockey guy even if you don't play for 6 months.

For the 2nd one... Adult hockey is something that will be there when you're excited about it again.  You're not going to miss your window.  🙂  Take some time off and get back going when you come back.  Sure, it may not be with the same team or same friends or whatever else, but there will be a new team and new people.

But the big thing is... You don't have to fully commit one way or the other.  Schedule yourself a 6 month break or something like that.  Feel it out.  See what you want to do.

Mark

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10 hours ago, IPv6Freely said:

I’m not having fun anymore. I don’t know where to go from here. I can’t even explain how I feel. Every game just feels like “why bother?” 

Aside from the obvious “just quit” answer, what the hell do I do?

What was it about the game that you drew you in? What do you think is causing this feeling? Could it be the team? 

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11 hours ago, Sniper9 said:

I have the feeling with league games esp late ones. I have much more fun during pickup and drop ins.. mainly because there's no "commitment".  But I never have the why bother feeling in the middle of the games. 

Not so much in the middle of the games, but more before the game "why bother? We're just going to lose anyway?" and then after the game "why did i bother if we were just going to lose like this?"

2 hours ago, Goonsquad said:

What was it about the game that you drew you in? What do you think is causing this feeling? Could it be the team? 

I'm not even sure. As for the goalie part I think it was how much improvement I was seeing so quickly when I started. It's really become pretty stagnant now though. I stop all the difficult shots and then the garbage goes in. 

And as for the "not fun because we lose all the time" thing, it's not so much that but its the WAY we lose. For a long time we were skating with 6-7 skaters and getting killed because nobody would show up (we have about 20 on our roster). Now we're consistently getting 9-10 which is awesome but we just find ways to lose. Last night we had multiple 2 goal leads and ended up losing 7-5 on two goals in the last minute. That was after standing on my damn head, getting run over on a guy cutting to the net (stayed down for a bit on that one because I was totally winded) and then later taking a puck to the throat. All to be able to say "as long as it doesn't go in!" I get it, winning isn't everything. But, this team we played last night has a good 4x the PIMs of any other team and it's obvious why. They had 4-5 roughing calls in the game for hits/punches/boarding/etc. All rough play that doesn't belong in D5. But, they defend well on the PK so it never seems to cost them. So they just bully their way into wins. It's just gotten old, that's all. 

So again it just feels like an "all that for nothing?" thing. every. single. game. Like, "why did I waste my time even showing up? Oh right because I'm the goalie and they're screwed if I don't..."

Yeah, I'm whining. I get it. But that's where my head is at.

I even told our captain before the game when he was like "you ready? how ya feeling?" to which I'm sure he was expecting a "yeah bud lets get em" response. Instead he got a "I dunno. I'm exhausted. Or lazy. Or something. I don't know what exactly, and I don't know why either."

I hate that I had to make this thread. I mean, I didn't HAVE to by any means. But I'm trying to figure out if less hockey like @marka said was what I needed. Or maybe MORE hockey in the form of pickups to get some more work in on skills and practice. Or maybe I should go talk to somebody about off-ice. I don't know. I'm lost. 

Sorry for the rambling. 

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Howdy,

With those additional details, it sounds like you just need to win a little more, vs. cutting back.  Getting destroyed all the time is never a good time.

Are there other teams / leagues in your area?  Is there a way to make the focus of the games less about the scoreboard and more about hanging with friends or something else?

Mark

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I could be totally off base, but to me it sounds like you feel like you're giving everything you got to get the win, sacrificing the body, showing up to every game even when you may not feel up to it, but it doesn't sound like the rest of the team is as committed. It sounds like you're the guy, or one of the few guys, pulling the cart, while the rest are taking a free ride and waving to the pretty girls on the sidelines and getting the smiles.

Do any of your teammates come up to you during or after the game and say thanks for bailing them out or thanks for keeping us in it? Cause it sucks to be underappreciated. 

I've been on teams where I work my ass off forechecking, backchecking, lift sticks to save goals, spring guys left and right by threading passes through multiple defenders, but nobody says a damn thing unless I'm on the score sheet. (I'll leave the gripes about missed assists for another time) While the guys who are seagulling all night, taking 2.5 minute shifts, and are like minus 4, get the nice game because they scored a couple. Stuff like that makes me not want to play, or at the very least it makes me not want to care.

On the other hand, I've been on teams were everyone works their butts off, win or lose, and we may lose a lot, but there's a we'll-get-them-next-time type of attitude. It never feels like you're the only one that gives a crap and that makes it still fun to go to the rink.

 

My 2 cents

Edited by puckpilot

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If people actually care about stats, wins, and losses in your beer league you’re in the wrong league or need to adjust your mindset. 

Play hard, don’t be an asshole, win or lose, have a few cold ones, then go to work the next day. Some people go to Barry’s Boot Camp or whatever the workout of the month is- we have the best sport in the world (physically and socially) to get our exercise. Try enjoying it for what it is and don’t take it for granted!

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16 minutes ago, Cavs019 said:

If people actually care about stats, wins, and losses in your beer league you’re in the wrong league or need to adjust your mindset. 

Play hard, don’t be an asshole, win or lose, have a few cold ones, then go to work the next day. Some people go to Barry’s Boot Camp or whatever the workout of the month is- we have the best sport in the world (physically and socially) to get our exercise. Try enjoying it for what it is and don’t take it for granted!

Stats/Wins/Losses have nothing to do with this. 

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1 hour ago, dkmiller3356 said:

It's all about the guys in the locker room.  Win or lose the guys on my team have become my best friends and I look forward to seeing them. 

I like seeing them too but I’m at a point where it feels like the 15 minutes before and after games don’t seem worth the effort either. 

I have no idea what the problem is

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I agree with Marka's initial recommendation: it's time for a break.  A month, two, six.  Pick up something else you enjoy, or try something new.  Go swim some laps or try a yoga class or something if you want an active endeavor.  It doesn't sound like a win or two would change your thinking pattern - just get away entirely for a bit and come back with a fresh brain. 

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Do you coach?  That may be a way to stay involved but step away from actively playing.  Or it may be enough to rejuvenate you and not have to stop.  Coaching ADM is a hoot and it really puts me in a good mood no matter what.

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On 12/10/2018 at 7:39 PM, dkmiller3356 said:

It's all about the guys in the locker room.  Win or lose the guys on my team have become my best friends and I look forward to seeing them. 

this. great locker room atmosphere ! Like pranking someone by wrapping their hockey stick with flame printed tape...

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Given that you're a goalie, playing on a less-than-competitive team has wear deeper compared to us skaters. I play, coach and ref (all year round mind you) but make sure that none of the three feel like a job. I make sure to over-ref so I'm fresh for reffing and/or coaching. I may skip a game to play in just because I'm feeling it. Proactive schedule has allowed me to be involved in all three aspects of hockey without resentment. I agree with others and what they've said but wanted to throw in a perspective that most don't deal with. A long break is probably needed now but I'd really consider taking maintenance days(nights) to skip a game or two. Your team will be okay. It ain't the NHL so missing a goalie for a game or two or finding a sub isn't the end of the world. Hockey is too good of a sport to burnt out by it. 

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I was starting to get burned out also. Years of playing with little break, a team that was going through a dysfunctional period and parts of my body starting to fail me were really getting to me. It took an non-serious injury to get me straight. I hurt my shoulder (the one I already had operated on) and I was seriously thinking about hanging up my skates. At almost 54 my glory years are behind me and I have nothing to prove. The more I thought about stopping the more depressed (more like down) I got. It made me take a hard look at why I'm still playing. I realized how much the game means to me, how much its done for our family, how much the friendships I've made mean, especially with a few that have become like 2nd children. I still play as hard as I can and try to be competitive but my outlook on winning and loosing has changed some. Depending on how my body holds up I may not have to many years left for league play. So now every time I play I remind myself that and try to make the most of it. If my body needs a break, I take a game off and when I do I am looking forward to getting back out there.

It sounds like it might be time for you to stand back and take a look at everything from a distance. Be honest with yourself and you'll know what to do. 

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One thing I want to be clear about. This isn't about winning or losing. At least, not in the way you might think. Losing every game because we can't get enough people to show up is very different from losing every game because we're just not being a very good team. Does that make sense?

On 12/10/2018 at 5:58 PM, shoot_the_goalie said:

Buy new gear!  just kidding.

Like DK said.

Honestly, I've considered this. Maybe having new stuff will make me pumped to get out there and see how it performs. 

All that said, I'm honestly wondering if this actually has anything to do with hockey. Or rather, whether the annoyance with hockey is a symptom, not the root cause. People who know me well know I'm not exactly a guy with the most rosy personality in the world but lately it's definitely worse than usual. Maybe this goes beyond what I should be posting on a hockey forum. I don't know. 

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On 12/9/2018 at 9:13 PM, IPv6Freely said:

I’m not having fun anymore. I don’t know where to go from here. I can’t even explain how I feel. Every game just feels like “why bother?” 

Aside from the obvious “just quit” answer, what the hell do I do?

I also go through phases like this and force myself to keep skating. I just consider it a type of funk that I end up going through. I have terrible anxiety and also have mood instability as well, so I assume this is what is part of the problem and not hockey itself. I should also note, I sometimes get this way with other things too. So I know its not specifically related to hockey and hockey only. 

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On 12/13/2018 at 1:11 PM, IPv6Freely said:

One thing I want to be clear about. This isn't about winning or losing. At least, not in the way you might think. Losing every game because we can't get enough people to show up is very different from losing every game because we're just not being a very good team. Does that make sense?

 

Totally makes sense, It appears that the apathy of others is a draining your enjoyment. I think someone suggested taking a couple a nights off from the team OR maybe sub for other teams. Dont let others not showing up mess with your mojo. 

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how long are your seasons?  Hopefully not too long and you can find/create a new team.

I ask because my league has 3 seasons per year.  This particular season has been nothing but a cluster and I have the same mentality of why bother.  My other league (private skate with friends) I get super pumped for and I can't wait to play. 

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On 12/10/2018 at 7:39 PM, dkmiller3356 said:

It's all about the guys in the locker room.  Win or lose the guys on my team have become my best friends and I look forward to seeing them. 

Dave is definitely on the mark here. A great room can make even the worst game or season worth it.

I played on a team that was pretty toxic. The guys were good, but there was quite a bit of drama surrounding some players moving on. It wasn't fun, neither was my role (just chip it out and go for a change). I really didn't want to play so I know where you're coming from. Finding a group you truly enjoy playing with is important. 

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