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work ethic

How to Teach Work Ethic


Work Ethic:  The Ultimate Lesson

We had an awesome guest this past week on the Good Dad Project Podcast featuring Joe De Sena, founder of the Spartan Races and New York Times Bestselling author of “Spartan Up!”

Shawn and I have been trying to find the perfect guest to come on the show and talk about work ethic.  Joe not only talked about work ethic but also how to teach work ethic to our kids.

 

Work Ethic and Purposeful Suffering

Joe shared several ways he teaches work ethic to his own kids.  Some parents listening to this week’s show might cringe at some of the things he said as it relates to “purposeful suffering.”  However, I think his theme on this point was solid!  Parents today can be so incredibly over protective that we shelter our kids from any type of growing pains.  No parent likes to see their kids experience failure, loss, or even really hard work.  However, what we don’t realize is that we are robbing them of critical life lessons that teach work ethic and grit.  If we don’t allow our kids to go through any type of pain and suffering and we throw them a life line at every twist and turn, what are we teaching them?  I think it’s safe to say when we shield them too much from a lesson of grit and failure, we are doing them a disservice.

 

Teaching Work Ethic Through Example

It’s been said time and time again that kids learn the best lessons from the example we teach.  If we want to help our kids understand the value of hard work, we have to show it to them and teach them how to work hard.  Desire and work ethic is one of the most difficult lessons we can instill.  However, we have several opportunities to teach it.

 

For example, the next time our kid wants something (a new bike, a new video game, an expensive toy, a car, etc.) we have the opportunity to show them how to work for it vs. give it to them.

 

For example, my eight-year old loves football cards, baseball cards, and gum.  Instead of just buying him whatever he wants, he has learned to work for things so he can buy them himself.  He will sell candy, rice krispy treats, wash cars, or even help with yard work to make a few bucks so he can buy what he wants.  It may sound tough to make him do certain things for simple things like games, baseball cards, and gum, but it’s an excellent way to teach him these lessons now.  Plus, I have noticed that when he buys something with his own money, he takes much better care of it.

 

Talking Work Ethic on the MFCEO Project Podcast

I was recently on the MFCEO Project Podcast with Andy Frisella and Vaughn Kohler (aka “The Pastor of Disaster).  On that episode Andy and I talked about ways we can leverage our kids failures to teach work ethic and grit.  For example, I can’t stand that kids today get trophies and medals for participation.  Awards are meant to be earned and not given.  Don’t get me wrong, we should always point out the effort our kids put out through communication and encouraging words.  However, we should never give out trophies for just showing up.

 

Awards, trophies, and medals keep kids hungry to keep striving and keep pushing themselves.  If awards like this are just given for showing up, what’s the point in trying your best?

 

Asking Empowering Questions Teach Work Ethic and Grit

When our kids fail, we have a great opportunity to ASK QUESTIONS and not lecture.  For example, if your kid participates in a karate tournament and finishes last, it’s a perfect opportunity to ask them questions to get them thinking about solutions to be better.   You can ask your kid:

  1. What did you think of the tournament?
  2. If you had it to do over again, what would do different?
  3. If you could be better at something specifically with karate, what would be? Your kicks?  Punches?  Speed?
  4. What place would you like to finish in the next tournament?
  5. What do you think we should do to prepare for the next one so you feel confident?

 

Questions like this get a kid (and adults) thinking about solutions.  It also helps identify what needs work and what is needed to get better.  Work Ethic and Grit come from knowing what we need to improve and putting in the time and effort to be better.

Resources:

GRAB A COPY OF THE DAD’S EDGE HERE

Check out our Dad Edge Group on Facebook Request Entry Here

We have new Dad Edge T-Shirts!  Grab one HERE

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

Connect with Joe De Sena

Joe De Sena Book Spartan Up!

Joe De Sena Podcast

Joe De Sena Website Spartan Races

Thanks for checking out this week’s podcast on How to Teach Work Ethic.

joe de sena

Joe De Sena on How to Teach our Kids Work Ethic and Mental Toughness


Joe De Sena, founder and CEO of Spartan Race, bases his company on the foundation that we, as humans, cannot really reach our full potential until we have gone through struggle. It’s what he calls “purposeful suffering”. Coming from a childhood where he had to learn, on his own, how to make it, Joe De Sena firmly believes his success has come from this purposeful suffering philosophy.

As we’ve seen many times before on the GDP, some of the greatest success stories have come out of a poor upbringing or incredibly challenging circumstances. But there are lessons to be learned from these situations.

Joe De Sena on an “Attitude of Gratitude”

We are the creator, not just the product of our environment. Teaching your kids that their circumstances do no define them empowers them to face obstacles they will certainly come across in their adult lives. Instead of being a victim of circumstance, help your child, and yourself, adopt an attitude of gratitude. While the situation may be difficult, find the growth opportunity.

Joe De Sena on the value of “Delayed Gratification”

Delayed gratification. Joe tells a great story of how his desire for greater things helped him turn down opportunities for instant gratification, and thankfully, his actions paid off. By showing our kids that putting off an immediate want for something greater, we are giving them the gift of patience and teaching them to plant the seeds for their future goals.

Perseverance

Enough said. The success stories on the GDP are not from overnight successes-those are few and very far between. The true successes, the ones that get to the marrow, are those that are had from great sacrifice and tenacity. When we teach kids that they can conquer obstacles they did not think they were capable of conquering, we provide opportunities to build their self-confidence and lay the foundation for them to reach their full potential.

Of course, these lessons take time to teach, and we may need to learn them ourselves, first, but they are critical for survival in this world. Instead of handing our kids everything they desire and protecting them at every turn, give them something greater: the inner power to reach the best version of themselves.

Resources:

GRAB A COPY OF THE DAD’S EDGE HERE

Check out our Dad Edge Group on Facebook Request Entry Here

We have new Dad Edge T-Shirts!  Grab one HERE

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

Connect with Joe De Sena

Joe De Sena Book Spartan Up!

Joe De Sena Podcast

Joe De Sena Website Spartan Races

Thanks for checking out this week’s podcast on How to Teach Our Kids Work Ethic and Mental Toughness with Joe De Sena.

teach grit

How to Teach Grit

Teach GRIT!

The Good Dad Project Podcast with Frankie Edgar was a game changer for so many reasons.  The coolest thing about the GDP and having a dad podcast is that no matter fame nor fortune, men jump at the chance to share their views, their journey, and even their struggles.

For this week’s five minute Thursday, I wanted to recap some highlights from the interview with Frankie.

When under pressure, be calm, cool, and collected

When the UFC Octagon cage doors close…anything can happen.  The secret to a successful outcome in the octagon is being prepared for anything because anything can happen.  Frankie shares that being calm, cool, and collected is absolutely necessary to be able to think rationally.

Being calm, cool, and collected is a skill that transfers from the cage to the family.  Through our journey of fatherhood, there will be situations that test us under pressure.  When we respond calmly and avoid a knee-jerk panic reaction, it illustrates our emotional resiliency.

How to teach GRIT

Teaching grit is probably one the most difficult lessons to teach our kids.  Our instinct is to protect them from anything that is difficult.  Our society also puts such an emphasis on winning at all costs.

Frankie mentioned that he loves leveraging sports to teach his kids grit.  For example, he doesn’t really care if his kids win or lose a wrestling match.  What he wants to see if how hard they fight for the win.  If there isn’t a desire and a fire in the belly to win, that is a bigger problem.  None of us can coach desire.  Desire is either there or it’s not.  However, we can teach how to leverage our desire to win to tap into our grit.  We can even leverage our losses to teach us lessons on how to win in the future.  Finally, we can teach grit through losing and failure.  A victory is even sweeter when we have to work at it extremely hard.  Lessons of grit are learned through sports and as parents we can use situations like losses to teach these lessons.

For Parents of Youth Sports:  Take a Seat and Enjoy

Frankie had some excellent advice for parents of youth sports and that’s “take a seat and enjoy.”  Be the silent voice of love and support when it comes to sports.  Its extremely difficult to not get emotionally wrapped up in our kids sports performance.  I am speaking from a father who is a parent and a coach of my kids sports teams and I see it all the time.

Parents can be extremely tough on their kids even when they think they are helping.  I didn’t really get this mentality until I read The Matheny Manifesto by Mike Matheny, manager of the St. Louis Cardinals.  If you really want to see your child love sports and if you want to see peak performance…take a seat, enjoy, and let the coaches do their jobs.

Free Resources:

Check out our Dad Edge Group on Facebook Request Entry Here

We have new Dad Edge T-Shirts!  Grab one HERE

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

Connect with Frankie Edgar:

Frankie Edgar Website

Frankie Edgar Twitter

Frankie Edgar UFC Profile

frankie edgar

Frankie Edgar on Life Lessons from the Octagon

Frankie Edgar is a professional MMA fighter in the UFC. Frankie started his successful fighting career with a solid foundation of wrestling.  Two-time State Place Winner for New Jersey, 2nd in HS Nationals in 2000, 4x Division 1 National Qualifier for Clarion University and College Freestyle All-American in 2004.  He currently fights in the 155LB weight class in the UFC with 18 wins, 4 losses, and 1 Draw.  Frankie has 3 kids – 2 boys and 1 girl.

Frankie Edgar’s Upbringing

We are responsible for what we do, or for that fact, do not do. Frankie Edgar, UFC Champion fighter knows this very well. Growing up in New Jersey in a working class family, Frankie’s father showed his kids a life template for how to get through the good and rough times in life. Through his sacrifices for his family, Frankie learned from his own father that even when life doesn’t deal you a fair hand, it is up to the individual to do what is necessary to make the situation right.

Extreme Ownership and Life Lessons of Wrestling

Frankie took this mindset to the mat as a wrestler as well.  Frankie says the sport is different from other sports in that when you lose a match, the blame falls solely on your shoulders. There’s no one else to point the finger at. You either pinned your opponent or you didn’t. And so it goes in life: those who are successful are willing to take the blame for their mistakes and also know how to take a lesson from those mistakes.

Life Lessons Learned from the Cage

In the cage, Frankie says, even when he is faced with mind-wrecking punches, he has to remain “cool, calm and collected and make rational decisions.” Demonstrating this in the ring and in his life, he is able to set the example for his children that even in the most trying conditions, a calm mindset will help to fully understand the situation and make the best decision.

Take a Seat and Enjoy

Even when it comes to his own children, and those he coaches, he says he “take a seat and enjoy.”   He gives the same advice to parents of athletes. Instead of forcing your own desires on your kids, give them a choice so they feel empowered and know that they can make the decisions that impact their lives. (This seems to be a pervasive theme among all elite athletes we’ve spoken with).

Frankie Edgar on Teaching Grit

Overall, Frankie Edgar wants to make sure his kids learn to have grit, be good people and have a sense of culture. When it comes to his kids, Frankie says, he goes with his gut.

Free Resources:

Check out our Dad Edge Group on Facebook Request Entry Here

We have new Dad Edge T-Shirts!  Grab one HERE

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

Connect with Frankie Edgar:

Frankie Edgar Website

Frankie Edgar Twitter

Frankie Edgar UFC Profile

Thanks for checking out this week’s Good Dad Project Podcast Episode featuring Frankie Edgar.

Other Shows Mentioned in this Episode

Good Dad Project with Carlos Condit on Grit and Gratitude

Good Dad Project with Jake Herbert on the Gold Medal Mindset

Good Dad Project with Charlie Brenneman on Driven for Excellence

Good Dad Project with Jim Miller on Living a Life without Regret

Joel Louis

Creating a Career and Life that Work for You with Joel Louis

Joel Louis on work/life balance, pursuing your dreams, finding your passion in your career, and doing it all while giving 100% to your family…enjoy!

What Joel Louis has to say about being laid off

You’re panicked. You’ve lost your job and you look around your house to see your beautiful family, the home you’ve built with so many memories and now it seems like it might be in jeopardy if you don’t find a new avenue for income. It’s one of life’s curve balls. Yes, you’ve contacted your business network and put feelers out there for job opportunities, but there’s a little ache in your heart because you want to do something more with your life.

So, maybe the job loss isn’t necessarily a negative. Maybe it’s an opportunity to do what you have really wanted to do with your life and your career. Think about it. Even if you haven’t been in the position of losing a job, maybe you simply would like to step out of the corporate world and into entrepreneurship.

Now is the time

What do you do to identify what business to start? Find ways to add value and identify a need. Not only will this satisfy your desire to be your own boss, but it will also allow you to create the type of lifestyle for your family. The key is just to start. Even if it’s thirty to sixty minutes a day, work on your business idea to start developing your entrepreneurship. Yes, it may take a few sacrifices (cutting expenses), but in the end, living the life you want is definitely worth the shift.

Become a part of a community

It might help to become part of a community of like-minded individuals (you know, like The Good Dad Project!) that help to push you when you need it. Surrounding yourself with people who think like you builds you up and makes you more successful. Not only that, but it helps when you go through the struggles of building your business or finding that work-life balance to be able to share ideas.  Remember, too, that this is going to take patience. It’s going to take effort every day, not just a bit here and there.

Start your day off right!

So why not start every day off right? Your morning routine will be critical in making sure your dream is a success. Start with what works for you be it mediation, exercise, etc. and then, once you’ve gotten to your office, knock out the most important item on your to-do list. That way, it’s done and everything else is secondary.

Leave your legacy and find your balance

And, of course, the reason you are doing this is for your family. Many times we struggle to make sure we are paying enough attention to both work and our spouse and children. The key is to make your work fit your life. But most importantly, it’s important for your kids to see you continuing to develop yourself. In other words, be there for your kids, but don’t lose yourself in them. In all of this, remember that you are leaving a legacy. Your kids want you to be happy and will learn from you how to find their own happiness through your example. They will learn how to handle life’s curve balls.

Free Resources:

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

The Dads Edge Book

Check out this free resource on: CONNECTION WITH YOUR SPOUSE

Check out this free resource on:  CONNECTION WITH YOUR KIDS

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Joel Louis Links:

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