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finding balance

Finding Balance as a Dad and Being a Learning Leader with Ryan Hawk – GDP019

Finding Balance and Being a Leader

Shawn and I had an opportunity to interview Ryan Hawk, from the Learning Leader Show.  Ryan is a father of five daughters (yes 5!), a leader in his corporate position, a former college and arena football quarterback, and now has a very successful podcast called “The Learning Leader Show.”  Ryan was a perfect guest to have on the show.  Not only is he a busy father of five, but he has become a student of leadership and fatherhood.  Ryan shares what he has learned over the past several years being a successful athlete, corporate leader, successful podcaster, and finding balance in the journey of fatherhood.

Key Takeaways from Episode

  • How to lead our kids by example
  • How to positively build everyone up in the family
  • Why being a student of leadership will make you a better dad
  • Why being a passionate learner will make you a better man and have a more enjoyable life
  • Finding balance in life despite being a busy dad burning the candle at both ends

 

Tip #1:  Encourage Your Kids to Compliment Each Other

During our interview, Ryan shared a game changing tip that is so simple, yet so effective.  At times, we all struggle with what to talk about at the dinner table that can get everyone involved.  Ryan tells us that one of their family dinner traditions is to go around the table and each person shares one great thing about everyone else in the family.  It can be something positive that they did that day or even something they just truly appreciate about the other person.  I thought this was an epic tip because it not only teaches the whole family to reflect on gratitude, but also a reflection with a personal compliment about each member of the family.

Tip #2: How Being a “Student of Fatherhood” Will Make You a Better Dad

Finding balance in life means being a student of life.  Being a student of life will always keep you curious and uncomfortable.  I realize that sounds like an odd combination, but it’s actually a recipe for success.  When we are always open to learning new ways to sharpen our craft, we will become better in every aspect of life.  Learning to be a better corporate leader/employee, athlete, or entrepreneur can easily translate to us being better fathers.

How?

Because “learners” are always searching for ways to become better.  Our natural curiosity as learners opens our minds to new and better solutions to everyday obstacles.  Fatherhood, just like anything else, is a learned skill.  There is truly no manual for fatherhood.  However, always being open to how we can do it better will empower us as Dads.

Tip #3: Finding Balance While Balancing Everything

How can we manage our day, demands, priorities, work/life balance, and the day to day grind instead of our day managing us?
In this episode, Ryan gives some great tips that help him balance it all.

  • Marriage and the relationship with our wives/significant is a first priority
  • The kids and all of their activities are just as important as the marriage
  • Ryan prioritizes his days and maps out exactly what needs to be done and when he will do everything
  • He also has drastically cut down his time watching TV and other unproductive activities.  Moreover, he has replaced those activities with more self development projects, such as his podcast and business.

 

Tip #4:  Finding Balance Means Taking Action and Remaining Uncomfortable

The most successful people in the world are the ones that simply take action and live outside of their comfort zone.  Successful people are always striving to push harder and grow in every area of their lives.  Teaching our kids to take action, step out of their comfort zones, and to always remain curious are some of the best life lessons we can pass down.

Free Resources:

Check out a free chapter from: THE DAD’S EDGE on UNLIMITED PATIENCE HERE

Check out this free resource on: CONNECTION WITH YOUR SPOUSE

Check out this free resource on:  CONNECTION WITH YOUR KIDS

Links

Books mentioned in this episode:  

Thank You!

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Good Dad Project. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute to subscribe and leave a quick rating and review of the show on iTunes by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!

sports performance anxiety

4 Fundamental Strategies to Alleviate Sports Performance Anxiety – GDP014

“4 Fundamental Strategies to Alleviate Sports Performance Anxiety in Our Kids” Episode Overview:

Larry Hagner and Shawn Stevenson talk about 4 fundamental strategies to help our kids get the most out of sporting events. At times, it can be challenging as parents to know exactly how to help bring the best out in our child when they are competing. Shawn and Larry not only offer four strategies to help Dads, but also share some of their own stories and experiences.

Key Take-Aways

  • Focus on progress and not necessarily the results

  • Be extremely mindful of your words when giving feedback about sports performance

  • When it comes to sports performance expectations, don’t set the bar too high

  • Ways to talk to our kids after a sporting event

Progress vs. Results

At times, we can be so focused on the ultimate result of winning vs. the level of improvement. When it comes to sports performance anxiety, we can help alleviate stress by giving our kids techniques to improve it.

For example, instead of telling our kids to “hit the baseball”, we can help them work on their stance or the speed of their swing. Giving kids these small steps for improvement will vastly improve their enjoyment of competing in sports. After all, it’s not whether our kids win or lose. The main objective is to ensure our kids enjoy themselves and learn to improve.

Be Mindful of Your Word Choice When Giving Feedback

Kids hang on every word we say when it comes to critical feedback. Some of the word choices we use sound extremely positive and supportive from our point of view. However, they can have the opposite effect on our kids. As a result, our word choice and feedback can actually increase sports performance anxiety.

For example, the statement “Let’s make sure we go 3 for 3 today!” can sound uplifting to us. However, for some kids, this can create a great deal of pressure and anxiety. Keep in mind, pressure and anxiety at a young age can be the opposite of fun.

Setting the Bar Too High

Youth athletics is meant to be fun and competitive. For the most part, there is a very small percentage of kids who will go on to the professional level. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of expecting our kids to perform at the top level each and every time. Just like us, they will have bad days. Even the best youth athletes (and professionals, for that matter) have bad performances from time to time. The main focus of each and every event is simply to ensure your little athlete tried their very best and enjoyed themselves.

Conversation in the Car Ride Home Will Be Forever Remembered

For the past two years, I have had the privilege of hosting “Dad Workshops” to help other dads be their best. I have had several conversations with other dads who talk about memories of “the dreaded ride home after a game.” In other words, if the performance was not ideal, the conversation was not a good one. Moreover, the conversation would forever become a memory that was less than optimal.

The car ride home is a perfect opportunity to mention all the positive things you noticed about the game regardless if the performance was good or bad. Asking questions like:

  • What was your favorite part of the game?

  • What position did you enjoy playing the most?

  • What part was the most fun?

Questions like these bring our kids into a positive conversation about the highlights of the game. Ultimately, it will help alleviate sports performance anxiety and bring the fun back into sports performance.

Free Resources:

Check out a free chapter from: THE DAD’S EDGE on UNLIMITED PATIENCE HERE

Check out this free resource on: CONNECTION WITH YOUR SPOUSE

Check out this free resource on:  CONNECTION WITH YOUR KIDS

Links

Books Mentioned In This Episode

perfect-supplements-banner3.png Thank You!

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Good Dad Project. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute to subscribe and leave a quick rating and review of the show on iTunes by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!

How to Improve Patience Drastically Even on Your Worst Day – GDP013

“How to Improve Patience Drastically Even on Your Worst Day” Episode Overview

I have had the privilege of working with hundreds of Dads over the past 2 years since I have started The GDP. Specifically, I have done several “Dad Workshops” over the past two years.  The Dad Workshops are all about implementing 5 strategies in our lives to help us enjoy the journey of fatherhood. There is always one really important trait that almost all men wish they had more of: ”patience.”

Key Take-Aways

In this episode, Shawn and I go over:

  • Internal and External Factors that can have a devastating effect on our level of patience

  • How to recognize our queues during the day where we have the least amount of patience

  • Ultimately, strategies that will improve patience no matter what challenge you face

How to Improve Patience by Recognizing External and Internal Challenges

External factors are literally anything and everything that happen outside our own minds. Meaning, there are several challenges that anyone of us can face on a daily basis that are outside of our control that can wreak havoc on our level of patience. These external factors can be: disciplinary stress/challenges with our kids, unsatisfactory job, challenges with our marriages/relationships, etc.

Internal factors have everything to do with how we respond to those challenges. Meaning, internal factors are the voices inside our head that love to mess with us. For example, it’s the voice that asks:

  • “Why can’t I handle this?”

  • “Shouldn’t I be stronger than this?”

  • “I must be a terrible father if I can’t better than this.”

We have all been there and it can be such a challenge.  However, there are strategies to improve patience in any given situation.

Strategy #1: How to Improve Patience by Knowing Your Triggers

For the most part, Dads have 2 times of the day when our patience can be the lowest. Morning can be a tough time of day because we usually go straight from a peaceful slumber and dive right into the challenges of the day. Time and time again, we have heard people say, “I’m just not a morning person.” For folks like that, this usually means the patience level is a bit thin when they first rise.

Solution: Believe it or not, if you are not a morning person, the best way to get your day started on a positive note is to rise 30-60 minutes early. Reason being, you should get up and do something positive just for yourself to get your mind in the right place. For some, going to the gym and exercising is just what we need. For others, it can be reading, praying, or simply watching 30 minutes of SportsCenter. The point is this, it doesn’t matter what you do, as long as it is something you enjoy and it is positive. Studies have statistically proved that people who start their day earlier and do something they enjoy are 35% more productive.

The second time of day where Dads usually have minimal patience is right after work. Going right from “Working Dad” to “Family Dad” without some mental prep before walking in the front door can definitely be a challenge. Reason being, as men, we are out solving the problems of the world and that can be stressful! Going right from a stressful day at the office right to the chaos of the home front can be a bit daunting from time to time.

Solution: Just as you need to mentally prep for any big meeting or presentation, you have to sometimes mentally prep to be your best when you put your “Family Dad” hat on.  Prayer, positive audiobooks, and inspirational podcasts can definitely help get your mind and heart in the right state.

Strategy #2: How to Improve Patience by Doing Something You Love Every Day

Having a positive outlet is absolutely critical if we want to be our best. For some, a positive outlet means something physical like exercise, running, or going for a walk. For others, it is something that improves mental clarity and focus like meditation, prayer, or reading. The strategy is to ensure we do something on a daily basis for no less than 30 minutes that is a healthy outlet. Having a healthy daily outlet can drastically improve patience and help us live more fulfilled lives.

Free Resources:

Check out a free chapter from: THE DAD’S EDGE on UNLIMITED PATIENCE HERE

Check out this free resource on: CONNECTION WITH YOUR SPOUSE

Check out this free resource on:  CONNECTION WITH YOUR KIDS

Links

 

perfect-supplements-banner3.png Thank You!

Thank you so much for checking out this episode of The Good Dad Project. If you haven’t done so already, please take a minute to subscribe and leave a quick rating and review of the show on iTunes by clicking on the link below. It will help us to keep delivering life-changing information for you every week!