7 words to help your teen build the g-mindset

Happy Bank Holiday

Quick one – do you spend most weekends running around chauffeuring your children from football to hockey to the gym to gymnastics? If so this coaching newsletter is for you.

Last Monday I caught a segment on the Joe Duffy Liveline Show (btw I don’t normally listen to Joe – give me Marty in the Morning any day 🙂

An outraged lady rang in complaining about a gymnastics tournament. I think the tournament took place the previous weekend. She was complaining about the price of entry and also the nature of the competition.

Apparently one child (I presume she was talking about her daughter) had come fourth in a competition. The child was crying and very upset. The lady was asking some big questions – why do they have to compete? Why do they have prizes? Why can’t they just get a grade for competing?

I must admit this really annoyed me. I wanted to scream at the radio. So this lady wants her daughter to enter a competition but then NOT compete??

Obviously, she was upset because her daughter was upset. But is that not the point?

Sport is a wonderful way of teaching young people many life skills – how to train, push yourself, how to win and how to deal with losing. FYI, I was a very bad loser as a child! (I can still remember Luton Town knocking Liverpoool out of the FA Cup third round and going ballistic after Scouts on one horrible, cold January night!)

Often we learn most about ourselves not from victory but from the defeats. This creates character. This creates resilience. This creates drive. This creates passion.

According to Jess Leahy in her excellent book The Gift Of Failure, ‘the setbacks, mistakes, miscalculations and failures we have shoved out of our children’s way are the very experiences that teach them how to be resourceful, persistent, innovative, and resilient citizens of the world.’

In other words we are creating F-Mindset students.

Let me explain.

I am often asked what is the difference between teens who get ahead and ‘do well’ in secondary school and those who struggle?

Why is it some students seem to sail through secondary school and others seem to get left behind?

I have been working with teenagers and in secondary schools for nearly 15 years and I am obsessed with this question. Effectively there are two types of students: Those with a F or Fixed Mindset and those with a G or Growth Mindset.

These attitudes or mindsets are formed very early.

Much of it happens in primary school and then it really plays out when they transition from primary to secondary school.

There are many challenges when a young person lands in secondary school.

It is how they respond to these challenges is determined by whether they have an F or a G-Mindset.

When a young person arrives in secondary, they are hit with a lot of changes fast:

  • more teachers
  • more classes
  • less personalized teaching
  • more exams
  • tougher grading
  • making new friends and trying to fit-in
  • screen-time and social media
  • sexuality and physical changes

When it comes to dealing with poor grades and study, those with an F Mindset who struggle say things like ‘I am such a thick’, ‘I am so stupid’, ‘I am no good at maths’ and maybe even ‘that teacher is useless’.

Those with a G-Mindset respond to failure, defeat, a bad grade or a challenge in a totally different way.

And this is something you as a parent can help them with.

Here is what a G-Mindset does: They dig in and do what it takes!

They dig in and do what it takes.

@raysethegame If you have a child moving from primary to secondary school this September these 7 words will change their life – DIG IN AND DO WHAT IT TAKES. This will help them develop a G or Growth Mindset. #studytips #nobsstudytips #studyskills #studyboost #parentadvice #parenttips #parentingtips #teentherapy #teenanxiety #getitdone #anxiety #teenmotivation #teenadvice #genzmotivation #juniorcert #motivation #leavingcert2023 #leavingcert #studyadvice #mentalhealth #raysethegame #growthmindset #mindset ♬ Emotional – Bang Nono

And by you saying to your teen ‘dig in and do what it takes’ you are reinforcing work ethic, drive and resilience.

Dig in and do what it takes!

This is a recipe to build the G-Mindset and help your teen not just in school but build a mindset where they are able to successfully compete in the competition that is life.

I would love to know what you think. Let me know.

Enjoy the sun and the bank holier!

Until next time KEEP RAYSING THE GAME.


June 9, 2023

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