We all want to see ourselves as supporting our children, being there for them, cheering them on. Sadly, not every encouraging thing we try to do will be the best for our children. But there are 3 sentences that can make all the difference.
They’re actually very simple.
1. “I love to watch you play.”
This is from an article by Tim Elmore called “What Parents Should Say As Their Kids Perform.” Based on answers from college athletes, “I love to watch you play,” was the “overwhelming response” from the athletes “when asked what their parents said that made them feel great, that amplified their joy during and after a ballgame.”
I love that this sentence can be used for any type of performance or competition with slight variations, such as “I love to watch you skate” or “I love to watch you dance.”
2. “Have fun.”
This is one of the main sentences my husband and I always told our kids before a competition or performance. Our kids don’t need us to remind them of specifics about how they should perform. That’s something their coach should have already done. In a sport, if your child has been training hard, it’s time to let his or her body do what it’s been trained to do. Overthinking by any athlete or performer is more likely to create a cautious performance anyway.
So no need to add any extra pressure. Just say, “Have fun.” (See my post “Don’t Forget These Two Words before a Competition Performance.”)
3. “I love you.”
Isn’t this simple? Your child’s age or level isn’t important. The words to remember can be the same. (See my post “Don’t Forget the Three Most Important Words before a Competition Performance.”)
It’s amazingly easy to be your child’s best cheerleader. Just remember those 3 simple sentences, and have fun.
Image by PaylessImages.