I caught myself whining (in my head) the other day. I wasn't motivated to go do this exercise class I love and I hate, which is why I love it. It's called Burn60. I love it because there is no hiding on the stupid treadmill. I hate it because, yep, you guessed it, there. is. no. hiding on the floor exercises.
Sometimes we just need to trick ourselves into doing what we know is good for us by finding ways which won't allow us to hide. My current way is called "Kristin." Every time she bloody texts me to tell me she signed up for a class, I've promised myself I'd get there as well. Because, as most of us know, if we waited until we "felt like it", most of the time, life just wouldn't happen.
I was recently asked by a Mom what advice I had for her unmotivated teen. Her daughter is a very talented waterpolo player, but just isn't that motivated to go to practice. She has what we like to call, "shiny object syndrome". She gets very into one activity, sport or hobby and when she's in, she's ALL in. But then a hot minute goes by and she's not. It drives the mother cra-zy.
So here's the thing with teens, if you think it's tough to motivate yourself, as a grown adult who understands repercussions of not being consistent and not "showing up" for your work or workout or goal, try reasoning with a teenager.
If you (or a coach or teacher or mentor) can help your teen get clear on her vision, the motivation will come. I'm not saying it will always be easy (see aforementioned treadmill), but when she knows her "why I am doing this" AND is willing to embrace it, good things happen.
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My Top 4 Tips for Helping Your Teen Find Their Mojo
#1. Identify opportunities for her to "own" her goal. If she says she wants to be a waterpolo player, give her chances to show you she's interested by packing her own bag, getting herself up for early practice, speaking with the coach about her playing time, etc. OWN it.
#2. Help her set long-term goals. It may or may not involve a specific sport. And that is fine. Because at some point we all need to realize that the life of the athlete will end and she will need to have passions
out of the pool as well. Studies show that when teens identify LONG term goals, they are more willing to persist and overcome short-term obstacles.
#3. Teens can be very self-centered and this isn't necessarily a bad thing. This is the time they are supposed to be realizing their own identity (and that they won't be moving back into the basement after college), so encourage them to explore their curiosities. When they find what they are truly interested in, they are also 10 times more likely than adults to become addicted to something (again, this can be a good thing) if she sees the benefit for herself and is willing to "do the work". This is a great way to build intrinsic motivation.
#4. Use social for good. There are positive role models out there. Have her look up the best college water polo players in her position. Find YouTube footage of the best local team playing and go watch a match. Have her research how those players train. What do they eat? What does their strength and conditioning program look like? Where did that girl get her start? What have the best players gone on to do? Be a coach? Play on the national team? Play overseas?
Did you miss my latest interview about motivating teens on The 10 Minute Interview with Asia Mape from I Love To Watch You Play? Asia, in the past twenty years has worked for all the major Sports Networks; Fox Sports, ESPN, TNT, NFL Network and NBC Sports covering some of the most coveted events including five Olympics, NBA playoffs, and Super Bowls. I was honored to be interviewed by her!
You can check it out here.
2017 has been an amazing year of growth for me and as I count my blessings, I realize I am just getting started! Wait until you see what I have in store for you in 2018! I can't wait to share...
If you have friends with young athletes, who you think would enjoy reading my blog or listening to my interviews, the greatest gift you could give me would be the gift of a "Share" and a "Like" on social. I would be truly honored.
Sending lots of holiday cheer to all!
My family is off to Park City to play in the white stuff! See you in 2018!