My family and I are huge soccer fans – we live for soccer (well more so the children but we support their dreams especially as their chauffeurs!). With the FIFA World Cup now at an end (and our boys playing it non stop during those weeks) there were some shining moments as well as some moments that make you question the behaviours of some of the players. We have been using the World Cup to help explain to our boys some important life lessons.
To achieve your dreams you have to work hard. End of story. The World Cup this year is full of young players (some as young as nineteen which is incredible!) and we have used this to explain to our son that anything is possible with hard work and perseverance no matter your age. Look at that final goal in the Germanty-Argentina match – the goal was scored by a twenty two year old! We know that it is not always easy to be focused, going to extra practices and putting aside social activities to get to where you want to be but it is well worth it in the end.
It is okay to get upset but it is never okay to lash out at others either verbally or physically. There were several moments in this World Cup (and previous ones) where players have physically lashed out and hurt another player (and some that have even made me shocked!) and this is never okay. We teach our children that it is okay to be frustrated but it is never okay to hurt someone either verbally or physically. Hurting another person only reflects poorly on you as a person. Keeping a calm attitude and talking about your feelings is so much more important.
It is okay to cry and be emotional. All of those players have worked so hard to make it to the World Cup and it is naturally emotional to have achieved that goal and want to win it all. When the game or life is not going the way we had dreamed of and hoped for it is natural to be sad. I want our children to know that it is okay to cry – there is nothing to be ashamed of this. Crying is natural and actually helps make you feel better. We also want them to know that only they have the power to change the outcome of the situation – so work hard and no matter what they should be proud of everything they have achieved.
Cheating is never okay. Cheating is never okay in our house – it is okay to fail but it is never okay to try to get ahead by cheating whether this be in class, on a project or on the field. I don’t care if they make a mistake, fail a test or don’t pass a course as long as they worked hard at it and tried their best. Cheating only paints an unfair picture of you and you only need to cheat once to be stuck with that label.
There is no I in team. As we saw over and over in the past couple of weeks during the World Cup matches one person does not make a team. The same goes in every day life. We need to learn to work with others and co-operate in order to achieve our goals at times. When one person works for their own personal gain the whole team suffers.
How do you teach your children important life lessons? Do you like to use examples of popular events to help you explain to them what you are trying to teach them?