Life Lessons Learned from Childhood Competitive Sports

Baseball offers many chances to learn life lessons.Baseball offers many chances to learn life lessons.Kids today have an incredible variety of sports and extracurricular activities to choose to participate in, from the 'old-school' standards like baseball, softball, music lessons and ballet, to newer activities such as rock climbing, fencing, roller hockey, and lacrosse. Some kids gravitate towards team sports, where they can be part of a larger group working together. Others choose more individual sports, preferring to compete against themselves. Many parents know the incredible values they learned from participating in youth sports and want to replicate that experience for their own children. So no matter the type of sport, some universal life lessons, like the ones I learned as a child, are all part of the game.

Lesson 1: Never Give Up

When I was young, softball was my sport. Starting in elementary school, I wanted to make the All-Star team. It always seemed like I was the 'little' one, and never could compete with the bigger girls on the team for the spot as starting catcher. For five seasons, I practiced, threw, blocked, and strategized, until I finally made the All-Stars at age 12. That achievement was my shining moment, for I learned that if I never gave up someday I would be the 'big girl' on the field.

Lesson 2: If You Can Dream It, You Can Do It

I remember going down the block to my neighbor's house to watch their older daughter play the piano. I was fascinated, and soon she began giving me lessons every time I showed up. My parents, seeing how much I loved it, found a way to buy a piano and enrolled me in lessons with a piano teacher. No one had to nag me to practice; in fact, they had to bug me to STOP playing! I loved the challenge of playing a piece to perfection, and then starting over with a new one. I learned that if I wanted something bad enough, I could find a way to make it happen.

Lesson 3: Enjoy the Moment

As an adult looking back on my sports and activities, I have fond memories of happy times and lots of fun with friends. As a child, I remember being worried about my performance in a game, or being terrified to play music in front of other people. Like many kids, I was afraid of what other people thought of me and how kids would judge me if I made a mistake. Now I know that I should have worried less about other people's opinions and focused more on enjoying what I was doing in the moment

Content by Jennifer Wolfe.

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