The Olympics are a chance for families to spend some time together as they watch the sports and events.
It’s also a time for parents to discuss big life lessons with their children. A Metro Detroit sports psychologist shared his advice on how to make the most out of watching the Olympics with your children.
Scott Goldman has worked with the Olympians and many other elite athletes. He’s also a father and said the Olympics are an example of many qualities parents hope to foster in their children.
“Commitment to a process, commitment to a goal, delayed gratification. I think it’s really hard to say no to things that other people say yes to. The idea of mastery and what it takes to be at your very best,” Goldman said.
Goldman said it’s important to not take the fun out of watching the Olympics, but when the opportunity presents itself to teach a life lesson you should be ready.
“The real way to stimulate a conversation is to listen and to listen deeply. Most children love to ask questions and when they do, you as a parent, get to guide the direction of that conversation,” Goldman said.
It’s not just athletes who can draw inspiration from the games. We’re all going for the gold in something.
“I think one of the secrets to mastery, or elite performance, is about finding a sense of passion or purpose,” Goldman said. “The way I like to unfold it when I’m talking with children or elite athletes or anyone else is to really be the best at something. You have to put a lot of time into it and a lot of effort, a lot of dedication and sacrifice. And in order to do that time, effort, sacrifice, you really got to love it.”
If your child says, ‘I’m going to the Olympics someday,’ Goldman said you should embrace it.
“I think it’s important for all people, at all phases of development to dream. So, I think when they say that, like, support them. Support them in the endeavor and help them think about how to go about becoming an Olympian,” Goldman said.