At A Better Way Athletics, we believe parents are the most foundational piece of the child’s athletic journey. Without you and the sacrifice you make, there are no athletes. As a parent myself I know how hard it can be when we have so much invested. In this three-part series, we want to help you finish this season strong and be the best parent you can be for your child and the team they are representing. It’s not easy but our kids are worth it!
Part 1: Be An Encourager
In part 1 of this series, we are going to look at how we as parents can be encouragers.
Have you ever been a part of an organization that was unhealthy or even toxic? An environment where no one ever had anything good to say. No matter what you did it was never good enough. You probably didn’t stick around very long.
How often do our kids feel as if they are living in an environment where they are never good enough? It’s absolutely exhausting. It’s never intentional but the consequences are still detrimental. Being an encourager is not about lowering expectations but rather about creating an environment where kids have the courage to strive for those expectations. You may be saying, “it’s not me, it’s the coaches who are the ones who should be more encouraging”. I agree coaches could be more encouraging but the one person we can control is us.
Question: How often as a parent could you be more encouraging? Encourage actually means to insert courage!
As the season winds down the best thing we can do for our children is encourage them. This is not false praise that they deserve to be the starter or fabricated talk that says they are the best on the floor. Encouragement is meaningful feedback that simply says you believe in who they are and are proud of who they are BECOMING.
Here are 3 practical ways you can implement to encourage your child:
- Look them in the Eye and Tell Them You Are Proud of Who They Are: (not what they do). It’s easy to praise accomplishments but what our kids need is to be praised for who they are becoming. In a world of distractions, these pointed conversations are powerful!
- Leave a Meaningful Note in their Bag: There is power in a written note and there is nothing better than getting a surprise dosage of encouragement from someone you love. Sometimes the smallest acts can leave the greatest impact. They don’t have to respond, they just get to process how much you care.
- Send a Text of Affirmation: Our kids are constantly receiving information in the palm of their hand and there is nothing more impactful than an affirming text from a parent that has no agenda. Small messages over time begin to play a part in shaping what our kids believe about themselves. Take the time to send one today!
Parents, it’s an absolute privilege to love our kids. The above strategies help us master the art of encouragement verbally, hand-written, and electronically. There is no one they need in their corner more than you. Do they avoid us at times? Yes! Are they annoyed by us? Yes! However, the encouraging voice of the parent will oftentimes be replayed when our kids need it the most. Our kids are worth it and YOU can do this!
A Better Way