I believe my self-motivation stemmed from early positive affirmations from my father who would always tell me that I could be the best and will be the best at whatever I want to do. This created a motivated monster who thought that being the best was the only option. This is not a bad thing. Human competitiveness and the willingness to strive for the best is what creates amazing results! Nothing worthwhile in the world was created without a competitive spirit.
As I strive to be the best, I have studied the greats along the way and noticed the work ethic and the grit they had. I knew I had to work hard to be something special.
There were times when I felt burnt out and when I believed that the training and practice went too far. However; it was always fixed with two secret tricks:
- Remind them after they work hard that they are working hard because they are the best and you know they can always do more because of this. Say it to the point where they get sick of hearing it. They will be hypnotized forever and everything they do for the rest of their life will be something they know they can do because they are the best!
- Make sure they see immediate results related to the practice! They must find out quickly that practice pays off. If you use this insane practice strategy, make sure it is timed perfectly just before they will see results.
When I played baseball, my father would have me do hand-eye coordination hitting drills until my hands bled and it was dark, every night! This seems insane (it is), but I would play the next day and get a hit almost every time I stepped to the plate. Pretty soon, I was asking him to stay even later and do even more drills.
This is where I reflect and find out where a lot of my self-motivation came from. I was always made to believe that I was extra special for putting in the extra effort. The crazy practice was always finished off with,”You are the best and will be the best in the world!” Thanks, pops!
However, this worked for me. Tt may not work for everyone. But the power of making someone feel great regardless of effort, definitely does!
Developing the habit of not quitting
“Chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.” – Warren Buffet
The habit of quitting is the hardest of all habits to break. It comes on like a disease and then once it spreads, it is next to impossible to get rid of. Giving up falls into two categories. One category is okay, the other is not.
- NOT OKAY – Giving up at something you want or like because of a lack of effort. For instance, you quit because it is too hard, too difficult, too much work, too tiring, or you didn’t get immediate results.
- OKAY – Giving up because the activity is going to veer you off course for more important activities and it is hurting your life.
Through this analysis of the situation, you can start to assess if quitting is an option.
I have seen disturbing trends where the child shows a slight disinterest and the parent gives in because the parent wants to quit the activity. We must always take a back seat to the child’s future. I have seen this countless times. There is one way to get good at what you want and to be the best at what you want: don’t quit!
The method to our madness
Over the years I have experimented, researched, and spent countless hours and sleepless nights honing my craft as an instructor. I know that my leadership could be the difference in a child’s future success, even in the slightest way. If I can provide an atmosphere to reinforce positive behaviors, I will do everything in my power.
When it comes to teaching, I know that everything you do requires practice. You cannot stump me with one thing. Even breathing takes practice. It seems natural, but I spend 75% of a class reminding people to breathe. I focus on praise, developing “grit”, attentiveness, discipline, and respect, among other things. We must practice and teach everything. Parents expect so much from their kids, yet we must remember to teach and practice everything if our expectations are to be met.
How do you listen?
How do you pay attention?
“GET UP, KEEP GOING!”
Work on your answers for these questions and develop a practice.
This is part TWO, there is so much more. I will come back around to this topic at some point. I hope this helps. Please reach out to me (email@example.com) with questions, concerns, or to tell me I’m wrong. I could be. Who knows? I’ll just keep practicing!