It is really simple.
Most kids have no concept of balance in their life. In fact as coaches and parents, maybe we’ve never really given this idea much thought.
To understand why our kids might not have balance, we first have to take a look at the 10 areas of life that ADULTS must balance in order to be joyful, happy, fulfilled, and balanced.
The way the 10 forms of wealth works is you assess how you are doing, and then rate yourself on a scale of 1-10 in each area. Pretty simple, but powerfully enlightening.
For kids, I think the list would be:
Emotional health- communication thoughts, feelings, desires, etc.
School (effort, engagement)
Sports OR other forms of activity that require challenge and spark competition (it is healthy to have challenge and/or competition to stimulate the mind, body, and soul)
Friends/Social/Quality of Inner Circle
Leadership and Impact in others lives via volunteer, service, etc.
I did a Confident, Successful Athlete Workshop last weekend with a group of gymnasts. We went through a similar exercise. Guess what? Even 11 year olds recognized they struggle with balance in their life. More importantly, they had never done a lesson or an exercise like this before Saturday.
95% of your kids efforts and attention in life are on sports (accomplishments), school (grades), friends (being popular).
No wonder anxiety is at an all time high. As adults we know anxiety is highest when we are out of balance, giving too much attention to one area of life and not enough to others. Especially to areas where the results are largely out of our control. (accomplishments, grades, being popular are not always within your son or daughters control)
We need to teach more kids about this “Wheel of Wealth” so that they become “wealthy” adults in more areas than just their bank account (although we hope they succeed financially as well).
The reason I write about this kind of stuff is because as a coaching society, we’ve got the physical performance part on overdrive. We don’t need to talk about that anymore. In fact, if we want to INCREASE physical performance, we might want to consider stepping back and focusing on the root.
If you want to build a strong, sturdy, amazing house, you work on the foundation for the first 75% of the time it takes to build it. Then you add the bricks, the fancy, flashy, bells and whistles.
If you want to build a bullet-proof, confident, successful athlete, you’ll need to get back to the foundation.
NOTE: Yep, it will require going against the grain, against society, against what everyone else is doing. But you will also see you athlete reap rewards like no one else does. They will be mentally strong and resilient, emotionally balanced and connected, spiritually tuned in and purpose-driven, and physically energized and powerful.
Do you have questions about how to create a more balanced, confident, successful athlete? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to answer them or point you in the right direction.
P.S. You are doing great. Up until the age 12, parents have the biggest influence on their child. After that, it is their coaches, peers, and teachers, in that order. Consistently surround them around great coaches who will echo your words and teachings, and they will be that much more likely to unlock the full greatness and potential that is within them. If you’d like our help, email email@example.com and let us know.