One of the core concepts that can supercharge your results and influence as a sports mom is that of CONNECTION.
Most moms can use some support in this area. Many of us can also use regular reminders to be very intentional about this area. It’s very common to get off track as the regular stressors of life come up or our sports schedule gets crazy or as some other major event is happening.
So, it’s always a good idea to revisit these from time to time so you can continually connect and/or reconnect as well as continually strengthen and build your relationship and connection with your children.
I highly suggest you do ALL of these at some point, but just do ONE at a time. Don’t try to do them all at once because you’ll likely not stick with it and not discover the full benefit of it. So start with just ONE thing and them move on. It doesn’t really matter where you begin. Choose one that most appeals to you and start there.
1. Take the time to notice all the best things about your child. Each and every day for one full week, focus first and foremost on all the best of them. You don’t even need to comment on it or say anything about it at this point. Just take a week to OBSERVE. Take a step back and look for all the amazing things your child is doing and saying and learning and exploring and working on right now.
2. STOP asking questions you already know the answer to. Seriously, stop that. Stop asking them if they took out the trash if you already know they didn’t. And you can PRACTICE this concept with EVERYONE. For example, with younger children, stop asking questions like, “What color is your shirt” or “what are you playing with” when you can plainly see both.
3. Positive writing. EACH DAY for a whole week, take out a piece of paper and HANDWRITE all the positive things about your child. Anything that is wonderful, anything you love, anything you’ve felt uplifted by, anything that’s made you smile, anything you know about your child that positive, that’s praiseworthy, that’s honorable, that’s caring, that’s inspiring, etc.
It can be SMALL. It can be big. Do not filter. Do not try to write out what you think you should or what you think might sound good. Just jot down any positive think you can think of about your child. FILL UP THE WHOLE PAGE.
You do not have to keep it. You do not have to be able to read it. You do not ever have to give it to them. Just do the exercise. It might help to do this one AFTER #1, but it’s not imperative.
4. Ask connecting questions. Rather than ask them things like, “How was school/practice?” or “Did you learn something new?” which, as we both know, rarely gets any kind of considerable response. Ask these 3 questions instead …
- What was your favorite part of the day?
- What was one of the toughest parts of your day?
- What made you smile or laugh today?
5. Listen, listen, listen. When you begin asking better questions, your child will begin talking more. Your job is to LISTEN. Not with the intent to respond, but with the intent to understand and learn something about them you didn’t know before. And then, encourage them to talk more. (And what else happened? Tell me more. And what did you say to that? etc.) And then LISTEN some more.
Listen without judgement and if your child is older … DO NOT GIVE THEM INPUT UNLESS THEY ASK FOR IT.
Choose one of these things to do THIS week. Which one are you going to start with?