How do I help my child be more confident doing X?
I think my response to this is pretty simple for a player:
Should you be confident..?
The Vision We See
Over the past 20 years or so, the self-esteem generation was created by some well intentioned, but very questionable parenting strategies according to the research.
We posted a very solid video today on FaceBook by Simon Sinek covering what these techniques have done to millennials, especially when coupled with the INCREDIBLE effects social media and instant gratification has on the human mind…
Really, really interesting and predictable outcomes…
Millennials are NOT to be blamed for their unique character traits as a group…
We did this as parents, because we wanted to shortcut the path to confidence.
We read self-esteem, but confused it with areas that build confidence… they are different.
We KNEW that we couldn’t compete with the shifting values, and the incredibly in your face LOOK AT ME society we have…
All documented daily on social media, TV, etc.
The Rock (my girlfriend loves him, so I had to include him!)
The list goes on and on…
What We Perceive
We see the money, the fame, the mansions, the vacations, the glamour…
When we go on FaceBook or IG or SnapChat, and if we have 500 friends, all who vacation one week a year, all we see is 40+ friends posting about how cool their life is…
And it literally changes our perception of ourselves…
‘How can I compete with all this when I am here, sharing a room with my sibling, don’t have a car, need to work hard for my grades, and don’t have fancy cleats or soccer balls…’
‘I can never compete…’
And our self-worth, our self-esteem begins to link to things that don’t matter…
Don’t matter at all.
Literally, at all.
What is Reality
The truth is that the self-esteem movement went a little too far is all, and got confused with confidence.
You are worth more money, and more time, and more effort than anyone on the list above…
To your family.
To your friends.
To your faith.
These things you were born with, AND you have earned.
(And maybe, you need to focus a little more on these things, to add a little bit to the EARNED column.)
The reality is that none of us are the people on that list…
And, the things that produced that list are the things we don’t see…
We see how ‘cool’ they are, how much money they have, how they do amazing things…
Here’s what we don’t see:
You don’t see the hours, and hours, and hours, and hours he spent with a military experienced father at the course working on his game.
You think dribbling a soccer ball can get repetitive?
Try grabbing a 7-iron and hitting that 500 times.
Then going out and playing 36 holes.
The working on 4 foot putts for 2 hours to finish off the day.
The most talented player to probably ever play…
And yet he probably won’t have the best win record…
You think his life is perfect?
He is putting it back together as I type this…
And yet, we all think of him on this pedestal.
All very accurate names for him…
Right up until he created a social platform to interact with other college students…
Because he was lonely, most likely…
You don’t see the socially awkward guy whose friend was a keyboard and code…
So he disappeared deep into the world of logical patterning for hours, and hours, and hours…
Because he wasn’t playing sports…
Or with friends…
Or going on dates…
He was becoming a prolific programmer.
He met some very influential people and visionaries when he designed FaceBook, and the rest is all history…
We see the end product, not the process.
Think the stories for Ellen working the long hours as a stand up comedian in dirty clubs filled with smoke, scraping by, mastering her craft…
or Jay Z as some awkward looking guy fighting an anti-rap system, trying to market coolness and build an empire…
or The Rock as a goofy U Miami football player, not getting into his dream league, and instead moving to Canada to play, then spending COUNTLESS hours building his body in the gym, and his personality in front of the mirror… becoming The Rock.
Or Oprah as a very average looking lady, struggling with her weight for a lifetime, breaking her way into an industry made for pretty people, and working her craft, learning the business side of things, and eventually becoming the best host ever… literally ever… and a world-class business-woman.
Confidence Versus Self-Esteem
We see all of them now…
The confidence that comes with getting to the top of the summit.
They earned it.
Let that sink in, because parents forget this sometimes…
Confidence at a skill or game is NOT the same as self-esteem.
You should always love you.
I love me. : )
I wish I was a better person many days, but I still love me.
You should love you.
But, am I confident as a pianist?
Not even a little.
Well, because I am trash at playing the piano.
I can play Merry Has a Little Lamb with a couple C chords.
Am I confident as a singer?
Oh my NO!!
I am from the mid-west and speak through my nose, essentially.
I am terrible.
You know what I also don’t do?
Practice these things.
I haven’t earned the right to be confident at these skills.
If I was in a head to head competition singing or playing the piano, would I be confident if the other person was trained and had practiced more?
Do I even need to answer that..?
I Understand, So How Do I Get More Confident?
Confidence comes with small successes doing things you can control…
Successes doing things you have worked on…
Successes in situations that have more and more importance…
Confidence on the soccer pitch?
Build Soccer Confidence Progressively:
Rhythm and Coordination – can you do the pattern or skill?
Precision – can you add total control over where the ball goes or is?
Timing – can you perform the skill with a passive defender to learn space and timing?
Game Speed – can you perform the skill in 1v1, then small sided, then scrimmage, then games?
(Coaches Note: this progression MUST be followed if you are going to teach a new skill and EVER expect it to be used successfully on the field with confidence.)
Following this progression with your skills every off-day will literally springboard you past your peers who do not.
And, if you really care about the team, get them all working on their skills…
How long each day?
Well, how long do you spend playing FIFA, Clash of Clans, watching TV, updating SnappyChatty, scrolling endlessly through FaceBook?
Are you going to find fulfillment there?
Going to be world class at watching mini-series on Netflix?
Winning an Olympic medal at making sure your friends see you taking selfies all day doing everyday things on SnapChat?
Or, are you just addicted and frankly a little scared of dedicating yourself to your dreams?
This Is What I Say About Life
‘Crush Everything’ – John Papa
You want to be great at soccer, close this email and CRUSH 5,000 touches.
NOW. RIGHT NOW.
You want to have a great job? Then close this email and CRUSH your current job… school. Do your homework. All of it. Study.
NOW. RIGHT NOW.
You want a better family life? Then close this email and go tell your parents and siblings that you love them… CRUSH them with a smile or tears… and each day tell them something amazing why you love them.
NOW. RIGHT NOW.
You want to have better friends? Then close this email and you be a better friend. CRUSH them a quick hello, and that you respect and appreciate them. Make sacrifices to be a good friend.
NOW. RIGHT NOW.
Simple, Not Easy
Excellence, and the confidence that comes with it is something we all know how to achieve.
We get in trouble when we try and make simple into easy.
Excellence is very simple.
We all know what it takes to get good at something… Goals, a System, and Hard Work.
None of that is easy…
You don’t find excellence in just showing up and doing the minimal thing necessary required.
That will NEVER lead to confidence.
Simple, not easy.
Sorry if this stirred the pot a little, but we cannot change the process…
Grab a ball, fall in love, work hard, follow progression.
Insert any sport, skill, etc.
Hope this helps!