Parents, Coaches, Teachers & Owners – “Building A Champion” Part 6 – A Message For All 12 Year Olds And Above

You have entered a phase of your life that is more “adult.” The situations you will find yourself in are more serious. People will also be expecting you to make more informed and “adult” decisions. You are smarter than you were when you were younger which helps you make the right choices. There is one important thought that you have to think about a great deal as you become more responsible and make more decisions on your own and that thought is: your actions cause a reaction.

If you do this then that happens. Your behavior causes something to happen. Your attitude causes something to happen. Your decisions cause things to happen. What happens if your eat 20 candy bars? You get sick. What happens if you are lazy in practice for the 2 weeks before a competition? You probably will have a bad competition. 1 action gets a reaction. What will happen if you are mean to your Mom right before you ask her if you can go to the movies with your friends? What will her reaction be? Same situation except change being mean to your Mom to being very helpful to your Mom. What will her reaction be?

What you do today shapes tomorrow. Study hard for a test today and do good on the test tomorrow. Say thank you to your coach today for a good practice and then the coach will remember that tomorrow and will be excited to work with such a polite, caring athlete. Help your Mom clean up after dinner and then see the smile on her face as you made things easier for her.

Your actions and choices cause other things to happen. A teammate says “let’s cheat and do 3 practice beam routines instead of 5 that the coach wants.” Your choice to follow a lazy teammate who wants to cheat her coach and her team but winds up hurting herself. And she wants a partner like you to join her. Your choice.

A mature 12 – 18 year old starts to think about what they do, and the reactions to their behaviors or decisions, BEFORE they act. Your dad asked me to rake the leaves in the yard. I can refuse and he will be angry and upset with me and maybe punish me. Your dad asked me to rake the leaves in the yard. I do the job very well, he is happy and proud of me and nice things might happen later. Your choice.

The 14 – 18 year olds have some serious situations that they may have happen. At a high school party someone sneaks in some beer and wants you to try some. Your choice. A boy at that same party is “curious” about your body. Your choice. You may be asked to smoke. You may be asked to get in a car with a new driver who says her car can go really fast. Your choice, your decision, causes things to happen to you and sometimes to others.

The key is to THINK not just do what you think might be fun. You have to THINK when your friends try to pressure you to do something you know is wrong.

When you are 12 and over life is more serious. Your choices and decisions and actions are more serious. Using your knowledge to think about what the outcome of an action is BEFORE you make your decision will help you make the right decision.

You can make the right decisions. Be a champion and make your life fun and successful by thinking before you act. Then lots of good things will happen. Are you a thinker?

***Parents, coaches and teachers – this is a simple lesson but a very important one. I didn’t get into huge issues or try to get real deep with this subject matter as I wanted to “talk” to the 12 & overs. I sincerely hope that you will consider reading this article with the young people that you are in contact with. I also hope that while reading this to them you allow some discussions and get their ideas and feelings to come out. Let me know if this triggered a really good session with you and your young people. We need “Conversations With Our Kids” like this one. Tom Burgdorf on Facebook

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