Scenario 1: A long time referee goes on holidays for a month and there is a stand in referee that takes over officiating duties. Immediately the level of feedback from the players is more vociferous. Decisions are more passionately queried. Perceived missed calls tend to be condemned by the whole team. This goes on for a month then reverts back to the passionate mean.

Scenario 2: A long time referee leaves the competition for personal reasons. The new referee joins. Players seem a little discombobulated. They pay fees and ask pleadingly – ”Where is the old referee?” 

I must admit it is an interesting phenomena as it highlights the nature of humans in that we like structure (tribes), we don’t like unexpected surprises (survival instinct) and we grow fond of people (mutual respect). A new referee is a perceived risk to this paradigm – Will things ever be the same again? Will I be emotionally fulfilled? Will I start following AFL?

Life is fundamentally about change. It constantly evolves and makes for more rewarding and enriching lives. If it didn’t then we would all watch AFL. No that’s not what I was meant to say…… but I will leave it because I fear change. There are different levels of change and the way we engage with this change is the way we deal with it. The more fearless dive head on into new experiences and challenges. The more apprehensive assess the risks then meet the change. The fearful tend to avoid it hoping that it goes away. Cue AFL.

Ultimately the more change we have in our lives the more we grow, have amazing experiences and have a lot more to offer those around us in our lives and Futsal community. So the lesson therein lies that – the more welcoming and engaging you are with new referees, the more your life will prosper exponentially and as well for those around you. Futsal Pete