Does the sound track to your life involve the noise of your kids playing sports outside? The sound of basketballs in the drive way, a baseball hitting a bat, or hockey pucks “clunking” off the garage door? Do your kids just seem like they can never get enough of their sports?
If this is the case for your children, they may just have what it takes to overcome the obstacles that sports throw their way.
Now, this is obviously not scientifically-backed evidence. However, the ability to control self-motivation towards sports is. If your children just flat out love playing sports and have the ability to uplift their teammates, they are headed down the road towards athletic success.
If they don’t have complete or consistent control over their self-motivation, as most kids don’t, there are ways they can actually develop it.
Here are three ways to develop self motivation, in no particular order:
1 – Positivity and Confidence:
An athlete being able to stay positive is a direct correlation to how confident he or she is. Instead of thinking about how you failed or how you have not reached your goals yet, think about what you have already achieved in your athletic career.
It has been shown that positive thinking can rewire your brain chemistry, and positive visualization increases your chances towards success.
How can you work on this? Write down three things daily that you are grateful for and/or have achieved. Your brain doesn’t know the difference between your “imaging” success or actually achieving it. But by “getting your mind right” and visualizing your own successes, you are only increasing your odds of future achievement.
2 – Set a Goal:
By simply setting a positive goal for yourself, you are focusing on what you need to do to achieve it. By the age of 15 or 16, kids should be aware if they have a future in a specific sport. If so, these self-motivators should be able to put in the work and not have to be told to do it.
To increase your motivation, set a positive goal that is clear and tangible. If it is something that you truly want, putting in the work, like practicing your sport, can be more fun than a chore. While maintaining focus is important, don’t forget why you started playing sports to begin with: to have fun!
3 – Set Priorities:
If you are reaching the last few years of high school and know that you are on the fringe of playing your sport at the next level, start setting priorities on what you need to be doing to reach your goals. I tell our athletes to think about what they “should” do versus what they “want” to do; otherwise there is no plan towards achievement.
Discipline goes a long way in reaching success as an athlete. A good example would be that when the hockey players I work with go to the rink to play pick-up hockey, I tell them that it is important to have a plan on what they are going to work on rather than just showing up and skating around. They definitely need to go and have fun, but at the same time, it is important to work on their skating, shooting, face-offs, or whatever area of their game that they are trying to improve the most.
Whether you or your child is already self-motivated or not, these are all areas that we can work on as I believe that being positive and setting goals/priorities will set you up for happiness in any area of life, not just sports!
Personal Trainer Fitness Quest 10