Beliefs have the power to create and the power to destroy. Human beings have the awesome ability to take any experience of their lives and create a meaning that disempowers them or one that literally saves their lives.
- Anthony Robbins – Motivational Speaker
- The coach that continually provides feedback to players by always telling them what they are doing wrong.
- The parent who is critical in the car ride home following the game.
- The athlete that attempts to participate but only hears their inner critic of negative self-talk.
Negativity Promotes Negativity…The Opposite of Success
How is it possible to take an experience on the athletic field or in the classroom and create a meaning that empowers individuals towards lifetime success? Positivity is a great first step in creating this type of effect.
Providing opportunities to teach the power of positive thought does not mean ignoring reality in favor of the silver lining. Our type of positive experience centers on living in such a way that you have:
- belief in your abilities.
- a positive approach to challenges.
- the ability to try to make the most of a bad situation.
Positive thinkers will look at the situation realistically, search for ways that they can improve their situation, and try to learn from their experiences (Cherry, 2014).
A great way to teach this mindset is through modeling. The leader that demonstrates the attributes of positivity on a daily basis will influence everyone around them. As an athletic coach, this type of opportunity appears on a daily basis.
- Modeling Example – The team you coach has lost three games in a row. The positive coach does not blame the players by saying things like “the players are not listening to me” but instead finds a challenge that can motivate the players to reach a level of success in order to believe in their abilities. Through feedback of the positive variety towards each player in a 7 to 1 ratio over constructive criticism, the players will continue to search for ways to improve their situation.
Another method to use in teaching positivity is through daily questions. Before, during, and after training with an individual, a group, or the entire team is a fantastic time to talk and offer meaningful insight to a problem. Learning the most effective way to solve the issue in a positive manner may be the most important idea reviewed that day.
- Daily Question Example – Prior to training, each player on the high school basketball team receives a pencil and a piece of paper. On the paper is written the following: A new rule has been issued by the Athletic Director that only eight players can travel to away games. Tell me why you should be one of the eight players on the travel roster. By reading the answers of each player, it will be extremely interesting to learn the level of positivity within each participant and how it influences their perceived behaviors. The discussion that will ensue is a great opportunity to discuss how positive thinkers solve the problem within the situation.
It is virtually impossible to not have a negative influence in your life, I love how the following diagram offers insight on how to deal with a negative influence but not let it ruin your day. Please use this whenever you run into that negative person that you have to be around.
Thanks for going on this journey of growth and positivity with me and I hope you are able to add positivity and meaning into your own life, and if you are lucky into the lives of other people, on a daily basis.
Empowering athletes, families, coaches, and organizations to create opportunities for lifetime success,
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Cherry, K. (2014). Benefits of positive thinking. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/PositivePsychology/a/benefits-of-positive-thinking.htm