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Encouraging but not pressuring a high achiever

 
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Mon 7 Feb, 2011 08:16 pm
@sozobe,
It's great both that she's bounced back so well and that she is enjoying it so much! My 10 year old is also pumped to play this year, so much that he's been mumbling about the recent rain keeping him from doing lay-ups in the driveway. Like Sozlet, he is now no longer the little guy on the court and has discovered he can run and jump with everyone is he tries.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  4  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 11:43 am
@sozobe,
sozobe wrote:
I talked her out of that but it got me thinking in general about her intensity and what, if anything, I want to do about that as a parent. I don't think it's good for her to be so emotionally invested in this kind of thing -- I want her to accept failures and setbacks more gracefully.


Easy, you just recite her this and play her this over and over. ;-p

If competition or excellence is what motivates her then an angle that might resonate with her is that inordinate emotional investment is itself often an impediment to high-achieving. The emotional state is not just a by-product but part and parcel of the process and keeping an even keel, being able to focus and being able to pace yourself are valuable means towards what seem to be her competitive ends.

She's not going to be able to change her intensity too much (and shouldn't!) but can understand that it is a boon and a bane, it will motivate her and drive her to excellence but can just as easily make her stubborn and tilt at windmills. That burning a candle at both ends can be useful as well as self-destructive. It's a powerful car and you are only advocating skill at the wheel. Tell her to harness that power through greater control, and that right now she's got a "leak" in her game. Tell her that her passion and intensity are valuable enough to conserve a bit and spend more judiciously.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 12:12 pm
@sozobe,
Try being in a league with 3rd - 5th graders on the same teams. And my little one is playing on it even though she is in 2nd grade - fortunately she is tall for her age so she doesn't stand out. She can compete against the older girls that is why she made the league - but it is a huge difference in height.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 12:58 pm
@Linkat,
That's the type of league my son is in, 3-5th grade. I saw one of the girls' games and had to laugh at the girl under four feet covering a girl who already had a growth spurt and was around 5 feet tall. The boys aren't that bad yet as most won't hit that big growth change for a couple more years.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 01:18 pm
@engineer,
Yep, that's right where we are! The really-good player on our team (broken finger) is just over 5 feet. Sozlet's just under. The teeny third-graders are in the 4'0" - 4'6" range.

Good advice, Robert.
0 Replies
 
xrisxs
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 01:53 pm
Well I fancy the fact that you care enough to go to your daughters basketball games. Second you care enough to put your life on the line to better yourself for your daughter. Something is RIGHT here. At some point she will ask herself is all this for her or for you..
0 Replies
 
electronicmail
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 02:04 pm
@Robert Gentel,
You may like a new book called Clutch
Quote:
“Clutch, by New York Times columnist Paul Sullivan, is a well-written examination of what makes a person perform despite stress. It's not luck, he emphasizes; it's "the ability to do what you can do normally under immense pressure. ” More »

—Time Magazine

“Is clutch performance just a fluke? Paul Sullivan, in this terrific book, says no. With the deft touch of a skilled storyteller, he brings us into the minds and souls of people who come through when the stakes are high. Clutch is the ultimate guide to understanding high achievement and to stepping up your own game.”More »

—Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind

“Everyone knows that it’s difficult to work under intense pressure, but what Paul Sullivan explains so well in this book is that there is a certain art to it that anyone can master. Clutch is an engaging and insightful read that will help you overcome even the toughest challenges.”

—Lou Holtz, former Notre Dame football coach

“Anyone who feels that they tend to lose their confidence when the stakes are high can glean something from this analysis.”

—Associated Press

“New York Times columnist Sullivan looks at a bunch of case histories to determine why some people succeed while others fail, miserably and otherwise....his anecdotes, insights and observations are interesting and provocative.” More »

—The Miami Herald

Easier than your poem by far.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Feb, 2011 04:22 pm
@engineer,
That was probably my daughter - she is not afraid to cover and fight for the ball against some one double her size.
0 Replies
 
Chumly
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Feb, 2011 05:47 pm
@sozobe,
You are way-over-thinking-it. There is no good reason to set her into situations in which she'll more likely fail. She will fail in many ways all on her own without your "help".

She will find what works for her and what does not, as long you provide the basics such as: love, support, understanding, compassion, a roof over her head, a broad spectra of exposure to the arts and sciences etc.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Mon 14 Feb, 2011 10:56 am
@sozobe,
sozobe wrote:
Anyway, she just had a great practice and is all peppy and excited for next game, as of right now. I've talked to her about doing what she can but not pushing herself too hard. She seems to have learned her lesson. We'll see.


Just to add a little interest, another girl was sick yesterday, so the six-person team was down to four -- and four players have to be on the court. So this time she (and the rest of her team) had to play the whole entire game, didn't sit down at all.

I was really proud of her -- told her afterwards I thought it was her best game so far. She was the most intense player out there the whole time, but managed to avoid burnout. Pushed hard but not too hard. Her offense was OK (she scored her teams' only points, several good shots didn't bounce favorably), her defense was amazing! She toggled between defending the other teams' two best players and most of the time was really defending both of them. She played clean, no calls, but one of the two girls she was defending pitched a fit when her coach told her to guard sozlet (whomever you guard guards you). This kid complained that sozlet never let her take a shot and kept stealing the ball! Stomp. Sozlet was like, dude, that's basketball.

Sozlet's team still lost, but since she was out there the whole time doing the smothering defense thing, it was by a much smaller margin than last time. And she was cheery afterwards.

So I'm feeling better about her ability to deal with adversity. I was worried after last game that she would become one of those stressed-out teenagers who are always working their butts off to achieve, always feeling like they're not quite good enough. I don't want that to happen. Still might, but this particular situation is looking up.
0 Replies
 
 

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