It’s Time To Just Listen
It’s Time To Just Listen. This is a contributed post from Valli Gideons on My Battle Call.
Sports Parents, stop the madness.
The lectures. The play-by-plays. The analysis. The should’ve, could’ve…
Look around, and you will see on every court, field, ballpark…
All the talk.
Think about it.
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As an adult, how would you feel if you came out of a huge presentation at work and had someone immediately going over every sentence?
How would it feel for someone to criticize your every word or move in your ear, going on and on?
What would happen, instead, if, after a game, we gave kids room to breathe; what if we let them marinate in knowing we simply enjoyed watching them play; what if, rather than giving them a lecture, we gave them permission to take it all in and have fun; what if we simply praised them for their effort.
Even when…they didn’t score.
Even when…they didn’t win.
Even if they turned over the ball, flubbed up, or missed the catch or basket.
This isn’t about giving false praise.
This isn’t about everyone getting a trophy for simply participating.
This isn’t about not supporting their athletic goals.
It’s about giving space for them to decompress, time to cool off RIGHT AFTER a performance.
What would happen if we just listened? Quietly.
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Most likely, the child would bring their game up later—they might want to talk about what went well or where they have room to improve.
Maybe they wouldn’t want to discuss it at all.
But what our children really need to know is that their worth is not measured by wins and losses or missed balls, touchdowns, or layups.
And if we want them to have a love of the game—they need to discover the intrinsic joy of playing.
More importantly, if we want a relationship with our children, they need to know we have their backs and that we aren’t their critics.
I don’t always get it right—sometimes slipping into old patterns—but I try to catch myself and remember:
“I Love Watching You Play.”
If we just tell our kids, “I love watching you play,” everything changes for the better.
Try it. It’s been a “game-changer” for us!
*Inspired by Positive Coaching Alliance.*
Here is the original posting of this incredible article.
When Valli’s first child was identified with hearing loss, she traveled through stages of grief and arrived at a place of acceptance. And she decided no one should have to walk that path alone. A collection of personal, heartfelt stories from her blog, My Battle Call, she put into this book is for anyone moving through grief or difficult times and hoping to find a path forward: Through the Fog: Navigating life’s challenges while raising kids with hearing loss.
And she co-wrote a book with her daughter about her hearing loss journey: Now Hear This
©️Valli Gideons on My Battle Call