Category Archives: Life Skills

Practicing Gratitude … Why & How

Practice Gratitude

This year has been incredibly challenging for me … and it’s not even over yet! I could give you a laundry list of what’s happening in my life, but that’s not really the point, we all go through tough times. The point is, that as I reflect back on the year I realize that I still have so many things in my life to be grateful for. The real point is … practicing gratitude.

For starters, what is gratitude? Continue reading

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Breathing on Purpose

Breathe on Purpose

We take about 22,000 breaths each day. What would happen if we took a few of those breaths on purpose?

As we move into late fall and have the holidays looming in front of us, it’s easy to get stressed out. Young people are also facing stressful situations this time of year. Most teens are looking at the end of 1st semester around Christmas time which means final exams and large projects. Continue reading

SMART Goals, Smart Teens

SMART Goals

We all know that teens have great hopes and dreams for the future, but how do we help them get there? Having a goal is more than just an idea, it requires work and planning … learning to set goals is a skill.

Being able to set goals can help teens:

Take charge of their personal growth
See progress towards where they want to be
Maintain momentum
Improve time management
Reduce anxiety
Increase self-esteem

Amazing right!? Continue reading

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Confront Adversity …

Kids who learn to confront adversity ...

“Kids that learn how to confront adversity in sports will develop a sense of self-discipline and pride in their work which will only help them take their skills to the next level.” Sports Coach Tip #29

I found this Sports Coach Tip when I was cruising around the web a couple weeks ago. It resonated with me and I wanted to pass it along. Any time kids face adversity and get through it they gain confidence and are better prepared to handle the next thing that comes along.

CoachGray.com has some great tips and other information for coaches, parents or anyone who is involved in youth sports.

Aaacckk! Helping Teen Athletes with Pre-competition Anxiety – Part 2

Helping Teen Athletes with Pre-competition - Anxiety Part 2

Photo Credit: Julean Hickenlooper

In part 1 of this post I shared ways your teen can deal with pre-competition anxiety. In part 2 we are going to talk about how your actions as a parent, coach or adult supporter can help ease your teen’s pre-competition anxiety.

Before the Competition

  • Acknowledge how your teen is feeling. “Don’t worry everything will be fine” is not reassuring, it tells your teen that how they are feeling is not ok.  Let them know that you understand they are worried (nervous, anxious, or scared) and that you are confident they will be able to handle it.
  • Give them some space. Your teen knows what they need to do to prepare. Let them do their thing, they will ask if they need something from you.
  • If you are feeling nervous or anxious before they compete, model good ways to stay calm. If your teen sees you freaking out it will feed their anxiety.

Continue reading

Aaacckk!! Helping Teen Athletes with Pre-competition Anxiety – Part 1

As I was working on this post I realized that the topic was much too broad for just one post so I have broken into two. In Part 1 I mainly focus on things that teens can do (with your support) to help themselves with pre-competition anxiety. In Part 2 I will discuss more about what you as a parent or coach can do to help. Of course, I’m sure I will revisit pre-competition anxiety, and related topics, in the future.
 
Helping Teen Athletes with Pre-Competition Anxiety 

Many of us have experienced the rush of standing on the sideline just before a competition. The noise of the crowd, last minute instructions from your coach and the excitement from the team! It can be completely invigorating … or totally overwhelming.

Everyone feels some level of nervousness or anxiety before a game or performance. Anxiety is a totally normal feeling and in many cases is helpful for competition.

We have all experienced some physical symptoms of anxiety Continue reading

Where Does My Teen’s Time Go?

Where Did My Teen's Time Go?

It’s the beginning of the school year and schedules can get crazy! Your teen may be dealing with homework, sports, activities, family time, friends and work all on top of school. It’s easy for some things to slide if young people aren’t organized and using their time wisely.

Teens can learn to monitor and schedule their time so they will be able to fit everything they need and want to do into their schedule. By managing themselves and their time effectively teens can reduce their stress and be more prepared when something unexpected comes their way. Continue reading

Why Your Teen Needs To Connect With Their Teachers

Why Your Teen Needs To Connect With Their Teachers

As someone who has spent many years working in schools, a couple of those as a teacher, I will tell you the shocking truth … teachers do have favorite students. There, I said it. That doesn’t mean that other students are treated poorly and the favorites get special treatment, but it can give them a leg up.

The “favorite” student isn’t necessarily the one who is the brightest, or the most serious … it’s most often the one who is friendly and memorable, the one who stops by to say hi. When you teach over 100 students a day (as most high school teachers do) it can be hard to remember each student on a personal level. Teachers want to build relationships with students so the ones who make an effort to connect stand out. Continue reading

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Words of Wisdom

 

Let Your Kids Get Use to Someone Being Tough On Them

 I love this quote … it really rings true for me.

The skills teens learn in sports really do stay with them!

Top 5 Life Skills Teens Learn From Participating in Sports

Sports remain a great metaphor for life’s more difficult lessons. It was through athletics that many of us first came to understand that fear can be tamed; that on a team the whole is more than the sum of its parts; and that the ability to be heroic lies, to a surprising degree, within.
—Susan Casey

  Learning Life Skills Through Sport

Participating in sports is one probably one of the best experiences young people can have for developing life skills. Actually, I think sports participation is pretty great for people of all ages. Being part of a team teaches skills that are applicable across your life: school, relationships, work, you name it.

Just to clarify for all of you out there who are thinking “my teen plays an individual sport”, they are a part of a team. Sport does not happen in a vacuum. You have coaches, opponents, family and the other athletes you train with. Continue reading