During a fixture, your child makes a glaring mistake in the middle of the game, leading directly to the opponents scoring. Right away, your child looks over at you. What should you do?
This is a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate your unconditional support of your child while simultaneously reinforcing the learning, which has to go on during childhood and at school. Mistakes happen and the only time they are a problem is if they aren’t learned from.
Perhaps the biggest fear for our athletes is making a mistake in a crucial situation that hurts their team and makes them look stupid. Standing by your child in this embarrassing situation is a most effective way of demonstrating that your love and support for her is unconditional. It may be easy to say you love your child unconditionally – this is a chance to show it.
Here’s what you can do:
- Show that the mistake is no big deal in the grand scheme of things by flashing a thumbs up sign, smiling, or saying, “That’s okay, James. Don’t let it stop you. You’ll get the next one.”
- Avoid sending a negative message about the mistake. Don’t turn away from your child. Don’t grimace, roll your eyes, yell advice (“Never make a cross court pass like that!”), or show that you are upset.
Positivity can save the day, let them feel that warmth and support, I guarantee they will get it right the next time!