Bookmark Website  | Free Registration  | The Team
The Lounge  | Champions  | The Wire |  Schedule |  Audio  |  Arcade  |  The Top Ten  |  Historical  |  Email  |  Video

Dont Let Failure Go To Your Head


I watched as an 8-year-old All-Star slid dramatically into second base. Yet the umpire gave the dreaded signal, "Out!" The crowd yelled, "That's OK. Way to hustle! Great try!"

Another little fellow swings the bat with all the power he can muster?three times without hitting the ball. Each time, the fans encouraged, "Good swing! Now just pick out a good one and make contact! Watch it over. You can do it!" Then the strike-out. "That's OK, man. Next time."

I eavesdroppped as one of the coaches talked to my grandson Joseph's team, who had just lost their second in the double elimination tournament. "We have nothing to be ashamed of. You guys played hard and you played well. The other team just played a little better this time. You're gonna keep practicing and next year, you'll come back and you'll be great!"

I was impressed as Steven, another coach, modeled for his young protgs the responsibility he was trying to teach. In front of the whole team, he apologized to Adam for his own mistake in signaling the boy to run on to third base in a play that resulted in an out. He didn't want the young man to blame himself for something that wasn't his fault.

Maybe you're thinking, "Of course, we tell them those things. We don't want them to get discouraged. We want them to keep trying and not give up."

Exactly.

We instinctively know what we need to do the keep these little guys motivated and encouraged.

(Most of us, that is. Unfortunately, in the last few years of attending these games, I have heard occasionally heard some children being subjected to loud, harsh criticism from insensitive parents. I admit I was savoring the idea of punching them out when I was deterred by picturing the next day's headlines in the Hattiesburg American!)

HOW DO YOU TALK TO YOURSELF?

You know how to encourage others. But do you do as well with yourself? Do you know how to keep yourself encouraged in the face of failure and setbacks? Take this short quiz.

1. When you make a mistake, do you ever talk to yourself harshly and judgmentally, like this? "You idiot! Can't you do anything right? You should have known better."

Think about it. What if you had a spouse or a boss that talked to you this way? How would this affect your performance? Your morale? Your confidence?

Why not use more encouraging words to yourself, like the fans to the Little Leaguers? Talk to yourself about the effort you made, the little ways that your most recent try showed improvement over the last, and the things you learned from the failed attempt.

2. Do you ever generalize from a specific performance failure to seeing yourself as a general failure?

In other words, you didn't fail that test. You're a failure as a student. You didn't lose that contract. You're a dud as a salesperson.

Change that! Talk to yourself about the specific situation. Don't overgeneralize.

3. When you don't accomplish what you had hoped, do you tell yourself, "This is always the way it is for me?"

In other words, do you view the failure as a never-ending pattern?

Challenge that hope-robbing perspective. If you are to keep hope and keep trying, you must see your failures as temporary. Get to work and find out how you can do better next time.

4. Do you make yourself responsible for things over which you have no control?

Recognize your human limits. Others make their own choices about what they do, despite your best efforts. There are very real conditions that impact your success at a task, no matter how skillfully and diligently you try. Take responsibility for doing your best, but be realistic about what you can control and what you can't.

BE YOUR BEST FRIEND

If you have trouble changing the habit of talking negatively to yourself, here's another tool you can use. Imagine that your best friend were telling you about the situation you're in, and that the words being used were self-berating?like yours. What would you say to him or her? How would you encourage him or her to find the best in the situation and keep trying?

See?you do know how to do it. Now, do that for yourself.If you aren't your own best friend, who will be?

Dr. Bev Smallwood is a psychologist who has worked with organizations across the globe for over 20 years. Her high-energy, high-content, high-involvement Magnetic Workplaces (r) programs provide dozens of practical strategies and skills that can be put to work immediately to:

  • build strong leaders who influence and develop others through serving

  • energize, motivate, and retain team members

  • successfully accomplish important organizational transitions

  • impress customers and build their loyalty

  • Review a complete list of her programs available for your convention or corporate meeting at the website, www.MagneticWorkplaces.com


    MORE RESOURCES:

    Orlando Sentinel

    Gators say motivation will not be a problem in bowl despite distractions
    Orlando Sentinel
    GAINESVILLE — History, circumstance and human nature say otherwise, but UF interim head coach D.J. Durkin said motivation should be no problem for the Gators. A Jan. 3 matchup with East Carolina in the Birmingham Bowl will feature a Gators' squad in ...
    Interim coach DJ Durkin tries to keep Gators motivatedPalm Beach Post (blog)
    For Florida players, different motivations heading into Birmingham BowlFlorida Times-Union
    Interim coach DJ Durkin wants Florida Gators focusedMiamiHerald.com

    all 17 news articles »


    Motivation key factor in bowl games
    ABC News
    With the first five games, though, set for Saturday -- it starts at 11 a.m. ET on ESPN as Nevada and Louisiana-Lafayette meet in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl -- you'll struggle to find a coach or player willing to admit that motivation is a concern.

    and more »


    Dolphins, Vikings Searching For Motivation Sunday
    CBS Local
    MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — With the Miami Dolphins at 7-7 and all but eliminated from the playoffs, defensive tackle Jared Odrick talked about playing out the season. “We're on a team that's .500,” he said. “If you don't believe that you're a .500 ...

    and more »


    Dallas Morning News

    Carlton: Baylor using CFP snub, Fiesta Bowl loss as motivation to make ...
    Dallas Morning News
    Baylor head coach Art Briles shrugs his shoulders as he discusses with the media the Bears' snub following the College Football Playoff championship selection announcement Sunday, December 7, 2014 in Waco, Texas. (G.J. McCarthy/The Dallas Morning ...

    and more »


    Deseret News

    60-80pt 1-line headline
    Salt Lake Tribune
    But don't tell that to coach Bronco Mendenhall's team, which has insisted since it landed in Miami last Wednesday that it is as motivated to defeat Memphis (9-3) at Marlins Park (noon MST, ESPN) as it has ever been before a game this season. The ...
    Dick Harmon: Execution, not words, will crown victor in BYU-Memphis matchupDeseret News

    all 13 news articles »


    Javier: Our Europa League motivation
    Liverpool FC
    The carrot of Champions League qualification for winning the Europa League will further supplement the motivation within the Liverpool squad to lift the trophy next year, insists Javier Manquillo. A third-place finish in Group B of the continent's ...

    and more »


    blogs.hbr.org (blog)

    What Maslow's Hierarchy Won't Tell You About Motivation
    blogs.hbr.org (blog)
    At some point in their careers, most leaders have either consciously — or, more likely, unwittingly — based (or justified) their approach to motivation on Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. Maslow's idea that people are motivated by satisfying lower-level ...



    Miami Dolphins need to find the right motivation
    Sun Sentinel
    Whether it's family, friends, money, pride, credibility, goals, consequences or simply the challenge of finishing the season strong, each Dolphins player must find themselves a carrot. If Philbin's having a problem keeping his team hungry and motivated ...

    and more »


    Forest Lake Times

    Boys lagging when it comes to classroom motivation
    Forest Lake Times
    A Stillwater school superintendent is asking a big question: Why do high school girls do better in the classroom than high school boys? Tom Nelson, who has been a superintendent for 20 years, recently wrote a guest column in the Stillwater Gazette that ...



    Your support is my motivation
    Daily News - Galveston County
    Another year has passed and brought with it a host of memories to be stored and thought about during quieter moments. Moments of joy, like sharing special moments with my grandchildren and moments of sadness at the passing of a friend, each has helped ...


    Google News


    Advertisement



    Section Site Map - Submit News - Feedback - Comments - Advertise with Us

    Copyright 2006 Luminati Inc. All rights reserved.