Dr. Kenney’s Friday 5 Spot
On Fridays I like to share some of the experiences I’ve had during the week with patients and in my personal life that I’ve found significant in some way. I like to share them in hopes that you might find value in them and have something resonate with you in your life.
Something I’ve learned from coaching I think applies to life. In a couple of weeks, I’ll get to start coaching football again. It’s one of my favorite things to do and it provides many lessons time and again. One of the best lessons that it has taught me is to coach the player and the action differently. My assistant and I always ask for a maximum effort on each play because we know that aspect can be controlled. What is variable though is the outcome. Things often don’t go to plan and thus what we want to have happen, sometimes does not. When this occurs, we want to help the player by giving feedback to help them the next time. We do NOT want them to feel like they’re being personally attacked or a failure. Therefore, we coach the action of tackling, throwing, etc. and do not yell and scream at them (which breaks their spirit). In addition, we provide positive reinforcement to the player when they do well. This always gives us a team of young men that work extremely hard and are not afraid to make mistakes and learn.
I think this applies in life because sometimes when we try something and don’t succeed, we feel like a failure. There is a difference between failing at something and being a failure ourselves. Failing at something is an event, not a personality trait. Focusing on the actions we took/are taking instead of beating ourselves up personally over the outcome can then turn those failures into future successes. This leads to personal confidence and a willingness to try different things/ways of doing things.
An observation I continue to find interesting. Over the years I’ve cared for thousands of parents and their children. What always fascinates me is how children so often mirror the behavior of their mom and dad. For example, when I have parents that are chill and relaxed, their kids will jump right up on my table, ask great questions, and get adjusted like it’s no big deal. The uptight parents tend to have kids that are stressed out to even walk into my office. I could go on and on with examples, but the point is that the habits and behaviors of the parents are usually easily seen in their kids. None of us are perfect but focusing on what our actions say about us is far more constructive (and important) than just what we say.
When is a good time to start kids on exercise? A parent asked me some questions this week about when a good time is to get kids working out and my answer was as soon as possible. Exercise is like investing, the earlier you start the greater the long-term rewards and the easier it is.
For my kids I initially just let them try physical activities they seemed curious about or interested in. They might want to “run” with me, and they’d go a block or two or would do burpees with me, things like that. As they get older, I make exercise more of a regular event for them but still try to keep it fun. We’d do relay races, competitions, and things where they’d stay active but still enjoy it. As we tried different things, they’d begin to have favorites and we’d make those our staples. The goal is not to make it overly intense or boring, just to give them an appreciation of how much better they feel when they are in motion and planting the seed of why that should be a lifelong habit.
What is your favorite part of the day? I was interviewed by a businesswoman earlier this week and one of the questions she asked was what my favorite part of the day was. My answer was that I didn’t have a specific time but rather it was my routine that I liked most. I explained to her that by having my routine, I can remain in the moment with whatever I’m doing and thus enjoy it more. This structure allows me to have time to enjoy my kids and wife, exercise, work and “me time.” This also prevents me from becoming stressed or frazzled, helps me stay focused and I don’t feel as though one thing is taking time from another.
Some quotes I love.
“Don’t be afraid to give up the good for the great.” – Steve Prefontaine
“The truest measure of a man is what he can do without.” – Dean Karnazes
“You never, on your deathbed, are thrilled that you listened to everybody else.” – Gary Vaynerchuck
“The arrogance of success is to think that what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow.” – William Pollard
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