Childhood, much like life, is full of competition. Children compete at how for mom and dad’s attentions, they compete with friends to do something quicker and or better. They compete at school to get good grades. They compete to get picked for the “best team,” in gym class. There is absolutely nothing wrong with healthy competition. Competition is actually good for all of us. It keeps us motivated to continue to improve and get better at whatever it is we want to do.
Healthy competition can teach children how to be their best along with encouraging teamwork and instilling in them a strong work ethic. Competition will also teach children invaluable lessons about sportsmanship, the importance of preparation and discipline. Perhaps the most important lesson it teaches is preparedness for the challenges that life will throw at them.
Keep in mind that I am talking about healthy competition. We have all seen the over involved parent that, in my opinion, is trying to live vicariously through their child that gets up and yells and screams and berates their child during a football or baseball game. We have all seen the parents that show utter disappointment in their child after a competition if their child doesn’t come in first. Completely ignoring the fact that their child did their best.
We all want our kids to be the best, sometimes we have to accept the fact that they are not going to win everything they set out to do… and expecting them to is just unreasonable. Winning and losing both offer very important life lessons.
Here are seven tips to help you encourage healthy competition in your children.