One of my favorite things to do is to coach football! Here are some early leassons learned from this season.
“In the absence of feedback, people will fill in the blanks with a negative. They will assume you don’t care about them or don’t like them.”
~ Pat Summit
I LOVE Football!
First, I want to say that I LOVE football!
It really helped me as a struggling teen, and even as an adult, football plays a beneficial part in my life.
For the past 4 years, I’ve helped coach football in some capacity. Several years before that I also spent 4 years coaching at the high school level.
It’s thanks to football that my wife and I got into foster parenting and part of the reason I got into education. And now, as a life coach, football has a heavy influence on how I teach and coach parents and their teens.
This year, I wanted to take a minute and share some powerful lessons that I’ve learned so far from this season.
Lessons I’ve Learned So Far that You Can Use with You and Your Teen!
Feedback is important!
This is the first year that I’ve coached with this set of coaches.
One of the things that I’ve noticed that sets the best coaches apart from the others is their ability to give consistent feedback!
The coaches who are most respected give consistent feedback. Do something wrong, they’re going to calmly let you know. Do something right, they’re going to calmly let you know. The best coaches give players feedback, for example coaching on how to block better, then they wait and watch for you to do it right so they can give you feedback in the form of praise.
Recently in talking with my son, he told me that he didn’t like certain coaches. When I asked him “Why?” he explained that he didn’t think that they liked him. Again, I asked my favorite coaching question, “Why?” To which he answered, “I don’t think they like anyone. They never tell us anything. They never talk to us.”
How can you consistently offer feedback? What feedback would you like to offer?
For me it’s teaching my teen, it’s praising his efforts, and it’s letting him know that everything is just right.
You are responsible for your culture!
I love the team that I am coaching with, and I am grateful for the opportunity. I want to be clear about that!
I also want to share some of the lessons that I’ve noticed and some things that you might be able to apply in your home.
This lesson has become glaringly obvious lately.
You are responsible for your culture.
Recently I overheard some coaches complaining about players being late. The funny thing was, this group of coaches is consistently late themselves. They are responsible for the culture that they are complaining about. Not only do they tolerate players being late, but they also model that behavior by being late themselves.
Being responsible for your culture is both a blessing and a curse. We can see the negative impact in the example above.
This is also a blessing because if you want to change your culture, it starts with YOU.
Be the change that you want to see.
How are you responsible for the culture in your home, both the good and the bad?
How can you take responsibility for your culture? Where would you like to start BEing different?
For me in my home, it’s positioning myself as the hero by avoiding my tendency to complain and blame. It’s creating a culture of responsibility and BEing the hero of our own stories.
Excitement is contagious!
It’s been fun to coach with these coaches. One of the new coaches is my son’s favorite coach. When I asked him, “Why?”, he said, because he’s always happy and excited. This coach is one big buff, athletic-looking, dude! When he gets excited, it’s a little scary because he’s so massive, but EVERYONE around him gets excited.
What if you got excited every time you saw your teen? What if that was one of your new ways of BEing? What impact would that have on you and your teen’s life?
For me, it’s celebrating my teen’s victories and successes. It’s being excited to see him and spend time with him.
Call to ACTION!
My BETA Impact Parenting Program is now live, and the doors are closed . . .
. . . BUT . . .
. . . If you want to take your parenting to the next level, you can still join the Firmly Founded Parent.
Now that my Impact Parenting Program is up and running, we’re going to be revamping and improving the Firmly Founded Parent, and I want you to join us to make it the best monthly parenting membership EVER!
How you interpret things and the stories you tell will determine whether you are the victim or the hero of your story!
“You are not at the mercy of your circumstances. You are at the mercy of your interpretations.”
~ Jim Fortin
Interpretations are Just Thoughts and Stories.
Most people think that their interpretations are facts, just the way things are.
If they were facts, they would go in the circumstance line of the model.
Fortunately for us, interpretations are thoughts. This is the best news ever because it means that you have the power to choose your interpretations.
You can look at your interpretations in the model and see how they impact your ways of BEing. How do they make you feel? How do they make you act? What results do you get from your interpretations?
Since interpretations are thoughts, how you interpret things will determine what you look for, where you put your attention, and how you think.
If you’re not intentional about your interpretations, your interpretations will create results in your life that you are not happy with.
Why Intentional Interpretation Is SO Powerful.
Interpretations are just your stories of how you perceive circumstances around you. How you interpret life around you determines the stories that you tell yourself in your own head.
So, when you have an interpretation, it shows up in your thought line in your model. As a thought, your interpretations create the feelings that drive your actions which create your results.
This is HUGE!
If you don’t like how you feel, or you don’t like your actions, or you’re not happy with your results, choose new interpretations.
Here’s an example that I use when I coach football.
Look at being physically exhausted.
Most people interpret being exhausted or tired as meaning that you need a break, you need to slow down and conserve energy or that something has gone “wrong” and that it’s bad to be tired and exhausted.
Most of these interpretations take place on the subconscious level. You don’t even realize that you are thinking this way.
In football this causes athletes to take plays off and slow down to conserve energy.
When I coach, I change my team’s interpretation of being physically tired or exhausted.
I teach my team to interpret being tired as simply our internal indicator that the other team is tired. I teach my team to understand that it is human nature to want to rest, slow down and conserve energy when you’re tired.
When we are tired, we know that the other team is also tired, and this is a good thing for us because they are more likely to make mistakes. And, when they make a mistake, we’re going to be ready to take advantage of it.
I teach my teams that being tired is simply a physical reminder to step up and take advantage of the other tired team. We play our best football when we’re tired. We get sharper, we pay attention to detail, and we take over games during the 4th quarter. We love being tired because it gives us a huge advantage.
Games are won and lost when people are tired. This is what we’re preparing for.
How to Be Intentional With Your Interpretations.
First, you have to be aware of what your interpretations are.
To do this, practice awareness throughout the day. When you notice an interpretation, identify and label it. “This is an interpretation.”
Thought downloads are also powerful tools to help you identify your interpretations. Any time you find yourself saying things like, “It’s not fair,” “My teen’s lazy,” “I’m not good enough,” or “This is bad.”
These are all interpretations.
Second, once you’ve become aware of your interpretations, you can start to be intentional about how you interpret things. When you identify and label your interpretation, intentionally more your attention to your desired interpretation.
It might look like this.
“My son is lazy. Wait, that’s an interpretation. I move my attention to the interpretation that my son is doing his best.”
We identified the unintentional interpretation and moved our attention to an intentional interpretation.
This will impact the rest of the stories that we tell ourselves.
Third, as you do this, practice new intentional interpretations by doing models. In the first step I invited you to do thought downloads. Once you’ve done this, you can do an unintentional model and an intentional model based on the thoughts and interpretations that you identified in your thought downloads.
Call to ACTION!
My BETA Impact Parenting Program is now live, but the doors close TOMORROW, Friday, Aug. 13th at 11:59 MDT.
If you want to take your parenting to the next level, I want you to be a part of this program.
Space is limited! Get in before it’s too late.
What Stories Are You Telling Yourself?
“Understand and challenge your personal narrative. Narratives become choices and actions — which become your life.”
~Bryant H. McGill
What is a personal narrative, and what does it have to do with my teen?
Personal narratives are the stories that we tell ourselves about ourselves, others, and our circumstances.
These narratives are tied to our thoughts and our beliefs, which then influence our feelings and actions.
Our personal narratives as parents are often reflected and copied by our children.
The stories we tell ourselves, our personal narrative, become our reality because we begin to believe them.
Some of my past personal narratives.
I’m the first to admit that this is an area that I used to struggle with. As a teen I thought that there was something wrong with me. Those thoughts carried over into my adult years until I finally addressed them through coaching and using the model.
- I’m not good enough
- I’m a trouble maker
- I’m not smart enough.
- I’m not cool
- I’ve ruined my life
- Nobody likes me
Narratives that I’m practicing today.
You CAN change your personal narrative. You don’t have to continue believing the harmful stories from your past.
It isn’t always easy, but it is totally doable. Here’s a few narratives that are helping me right now.
- I am good enough
- My past troubles were actually preparing me for greatness
- I can bounce back from anything
- My teen is resilient
- He is doing his best
- His struggles are preparing him for greatness.
So, where do I start?
Lot’s of parents want to change their teen’s personal narrative. They say, “My teen doesn’t have confidence because he’s constantly telling us that he’s ‘not good enough.'”
His narrative is definitely linked to his confidence, BUT you have to remember that you can only control YOUR NARRATIVE!
You cannot change your teen’s narrative.
You can only have an impact on their narrative by controlling your own personal narrative.
Here’s a good place to start.
- Become aware of your personal narrative about yourself
- This is the most powerful place to start.
- If you have negative narratives about yourself, you are more likely to have narratives about others or even just your circumstances.
- Become aware of your personal narrative about your teen.
- Start to pay attention to the thoughts that you have about your teen.
- How you think about your teen impacts how you treat them.
- Explore your teen’s personal narrative through observation and conversation.
- Watch your teen. Look for clues as to what their narrative is.
- Listen to the things they say about themselves and others.
- Have a conversation with them about this.
- Become intentional about your personal narrative.
- Once you’ve become aware of exactly what your personal narrative sounds like, start the practice of becoming intentional.
- Practice over and over.
If you haven’t yet, join our FREE Be the Change Challenge. Each day we will be doing simple 5-10 minute daily exercises to help give you a powerful perspective on your role as a parent and your ability to be the catalyst for incredible change in your life and your relationship with your teen.
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