Moving you forward one step at a time

Building Resilience in Children

To some of you parents it might be (alright please, not again). But for many of our children its worth it…

so again what are some other ways to check in or out that your child is being prepared to conquer their World.

Overprotection reaps resistance

As mentioned in an earlier post in this Series, openness to experience and curiosity is all part of being a developing child (hopefully we keep some of it as adults too)

For some children though, everything is all well and good, the openness is there once it is something that was done with parents or within the home… so in other words the child goes out into the school environment partly prepared to benefit from school because their mindset is …

“this is good once it was done before or something like it was done before with the parents” (and we are not talking here about religious restrictions or beliefs)

for example, Johnny is asked to move his hand in square-like motion looking at the drawing of the square (odd request we agree) but the exercise has a purpose … however Johnny gets in a panic and refuses because “you don’t move your hand like a square, you move it in circles, his parents taught him that…. get the point …

While as parents its important to protect and guide its as important to make room for responsible and safe others (such as teachers, coaches etc.) to be able to teach new things which the kids then can take pleasure in teaching parents

Recover & Resilience…good balance

Now take Johnny again but coming from a more balanced experience… he is asked to move his hands in a square-like motion … being new to him, and being guided by his parents that its natural to move his hands in a circle, and being trained to trust his parents…Johnny pauses and wonders about the request… since his parents also communicated to him that he would meet new and sometimes challenging experiences (a lot of which he could handle with a little effort) he giggles and tries …. that is recovery (coming back from the shock of an unexpected request) and resilience (being able to move forward) … Johnny eventually learned the purpose of the exercise and feels proud of himself for trying

So how do we get there as parents?

Once children understand the needful in terms of warning signs for if/when an adult is hurting them and what to do.. . then its safe to help them to appreciate how other adults become part of their ‘team’ to help them grow and develop

But truth be told some as parents it is we who sometimes need to work a bit more on being able to trust enough to do so.

Everyone of us has a family of origin. This family has shaped our attitudes, behaviours and biology. Time taken to understand it and for others coming into the family to understand it and work on improving ‘natural family tendencies’ can support our mental health and that of future generations.

here’s that full interview with the single dad YOUTUBE VIDEO LINK: http://YOUTUBE VIDEO LINK:

So let’s ‘fool’ around with our family of origin, get to know understand it and play with some new ways of being

International Children’s Day recognizes children as our future. It is a declaration that children are simply little people with feelings worthy of respect and consideration with a right to safety and decent treatment. Our children eventually become adults who rais future children. Safeguarding our children is safeguarding our communities.

Especially we had International Men’s Day coming the day before International Children’s Day and it is a case of the chicken and the egg, which comes first the boy or the man, for each continues to influence the other and then impact our girls and women;

Abuse is Abuse is Abuse!!!!!!! But even so when we notice that the girl/woman is “pretty” by most standards, we really wonder… 

Here’s the Ugly truth! We, the society, well-meaning go off complimenting and complimenting and that pretty girl loses all her other beautiful qualities…and becomes a ‘pretty thing’ …and if she were a real thing that would be okay… but truth is a person as a ‘pretty thing’ actually feels quite unworthy and of little value beyond that 1 thing…

So let’s remember to not just make the ‘pretty’ feel ‘pretty’ but beautiful outside and


The ‘little magician’ they called him, this Trinbagonian ‘midget midfielder’ who created plays using his smarts in midfield; Russell Latapy. And now he is serving the game as a coach to the Trinidad and Tobago U20 Footballers. Could that be why? why there might be an expectation of …

Sports Producing Actually Magicians!

All of the young men in the U20 T&T Team must have had that desire and include some sort of self-discipline for the players to reach this level

And well after THE LOSS of the game to the USA and watching their chances move away for the bid for another Worldcup, the ‘magician’ coach commented on how goal 6, could have been avoided, with a little more wit from the guys in midfield so we already know that there is no way for this ‘magician mid-fielder coach’ to transfer his ‘magic’ to all his players for them to do the same in midfield. Of course, because each player brings their own uniques skill and traits.

But seems T&T is calling for a different sort of magic???

We have heard that the ‘family that prays together, stays together’… well what about the team that plays together stays together …

Sports Performance …

includes skill and talent [x]

includes internal motivation [ x]

includes autonomy (some measure of control)

includes personal accountability,  assertiveness, sensitivity to feedback (which the coach reports his players as having),

includes the ability to stress manage or control the tension 

includes confidence

Now when a coach claims a team in underprepared and not of the team’s doing, what kind of Sports Psychology is taking place there?

  • It means the external environment is decreasing internal motivation
  • It means the structure around the players is reducing competence and confidence
  • It means the physical, financial and other resources are frustrating resourcefulness

It means that the sporting players are actual magicians if they can overcome that all on an ongoing basis and outperform teams who have and are making use of the support and resources around, like having 5 camps to support performance in a game!

Yet when a journalist laid blame at the feet of a League not waiving registration fees to allow the team to play and thus improve skills … the general focus went to

blaming who? … but the bigger point is/was/remains…

countries with serious sports producing actual magic…

find ways to put things in place to support players in developing their skills and preparing for games/leagues/tournaments

seems though the sort of magic that might be the focus for the T&T players is that kind where we say…

abra cadarba and find things appear from nothing!

It has not happened! It would not happen…because

sports produces practicals …. real day to day things that must be attended to and implemented to support the players and the game beyond mouth praise and tongue-lashing criticisms

and  makes magic …. when sportspersons and systems, systems beyond getting a coach, work together to produce desired performances

;;;;;;;;; so seems it is and would be a tough carry=on for T&T players as long as the mindset remains ah come on, please… go out there and

Start Producing Actual MAGIC!

Imagine the child who for one reason or the next is deprived of that parental care and attention that is so much needed for one reason or the other … and so has the need for support from an established institution what sort of songs would this child begin to sing…

One such child was The Original De Fosto Himself… and often within the songs was that noticeable beat of #hardships #overcoming #oppression #courage #sufferage #struggle #socialjustice #discrimination #encouragement #willtosurvive

and this is understandable given the journey of such a child to adulthood…

but often these songs come when the ‘orphan’ is at an earlier point in his journey…

Later in the ‘orphan’ journey

The ‘orphan’ comes to realize that #struggle #hardships and #overcoming are not only the exclusive territory of the ‘orphan’ but of all of mankind… and so the ‘orphan’ sings more songs of #prosperity #progress #courage and #empowerment …

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We all want our children to sing a song sounding like this, don’t we? 

Yet the thing is that many of us parents miss the red flags!

it is easy to get so bogged down, working hard to make sure our children have all the needed products that we forget that that is really only the beginning… and that there

MUST be an activating activity or activities that prepare the child to benefit from wherever they might find themselves,  

so as children head back out to school, what activities have we had with them to prepare them to get ready… have we asked how school is going from the child’s point of view? have we helped that child to understand what is required of them? have we considered some of the things that need to be dealt with that might distract them from benefiting from what they need to be doing in school?

otherwise like in this video we only get a half-way result!

online support 24/7 @

#therapy or #lifecoaching

Having won…feeling confident…knowing the team is ready and willing with its allrounders… Trinbago Knight Riders took to the field…

great #carryon…focus and attitude in place…the team delivered…

AND THEN…ahem! and then…

Coming in prepared and ready for their first encounter…the Jamaica Tallawahs have neither the doubt of defeat to dismiss or the remembrance of victory to give some extra bravado …

#carryontip the good thing when we focus on performance without limits is that we can exceed those limits…

and that is exactly what this team did…

but it was thanks to a cricket who has been described as a ‘T20 Specialist’… Andre Russell…

#carryontip learn all you can about the game, the situation to produce performance

Now for the  Trinbago Knight Riders they had to keep their focus as the game went on …but how do you keep your composure while having your feathers ruffled by the Russells of T20 Cricket  

when you step up to that pitch and would rather not have another attempt be hit for 6?

#carryontip … when we focus on playing for honours versus playing for pride…in the game of life we can get lost in the pride of life and it might be great but definitely makes it tough if/when our feathers are ruffled… but ah..when we play the game for a bigger purpose, there is a passion the keeps us going….

anytime your feathers or that of someone you might know gets ruffled… #carryonsupport is available 27/7 with either #therapy or #lifecoaching using #livechat @


America’s Got Talent!…its huge! why? because of the fact that talent matters. but now we know these shows are International… why? because people got talent hidden … just waiting for the opportunity to come out

And the Caribbean got T20Cricket…, sometimes written Twenty-20, and often abbreviated to T20, is a short form of cricket. In a Twenty20 game, the two teams have a single innings each, which is restricted to a maximum of 20 overs. So T20 sort of reflects America’s got talent where batsmen, bowlers, those fielding can display their skills. It’s a time-bound…

#resilience loves knowing the timing when that ‘bell’ would go…its easy then to hold out just a little bit longer

#resilience favours time-bound situations because then our weaknesses can remain covered up a little longer and we do not have to ‘control’ for them…

so many have asked… how is it we can clearly notice the talent at T20 and yet have the West Indies drop in its Test Cricket ratings… well as a Sports Talking Therapist would share but only after allowing one who has ‘been there done that’ to have a say…

Okay…Test Cricket…is much more reflective of the uncharted territories of that ‘open book test’ called life… it is ongoing with the opportunity for life to challenge us on our weak points…to bowl us some ‘odd’ balls, to get run out, to want to stop but yet needing to find the will to carry on in spite of, to be on the losing end of the game and search within for the resolve, to be winning the game and needing to remain focused to really reach the goal, have to deal with cross-cultural issues, and it goes on and on and on..more than ’20-0vers’…

So what is required? 

Mastering our mind gym before taking that field and putting all our work from that mind gym into use…

Our Mind Gym

we need to work out doubts but not simply by positive self-talk but by practical preparation…and during this time, preparation includes becoming very familiar with what we would confront…

we need to take stock of the fact that anything can happen on the field, or the day before, or the moment before, and so our stress management, relaxation strategies need to be in tune

we need to do ‘jumping jacks’ and figure out those triggers that might cause us to suddenly become anxious, ‘is it a comment’ from the fans/critics, is it something, in particular, that might be said and have a contingency plan to keep the focus

Practical Application

It is one thing to train and another to put training to use…

we can begin to put that training to use by visualizing plays, visualizing performing at different skills

we then need that key factor called adapt adapt…good teams are able to take all learned, all preparations, observe then what is happening and adapt for the benefit of the desired outcome…suppose the player there was an intention to depend on is having an ‘off’ day..what all lost…suppose the winning streak was on and the match had to be disrupted…is that it there for the game? 

Life is a test…and working out at our mind gym is not optional its a must no matter how many strengths we have going for us…   



So now the Central America and Caribbean Games have begun… and we have the Mexico Women spanking Trinidad & Tobago Women 5-1….

Good Spanks! good for the ‘spanked’ and great for the ‘spankee’ (Mexico)….

Only in Sports does the ‘spankee’ (one doing the spanking) know that they deserved to spank, why …. #the team worked hard, #the team played a great game… and most importantly #the team spanked a team that was in their category and level

For parents is it great being a ‘spankee’?  

Not sue about our Central America context but for sure in the Caribbean ‘spanks’ or ‘licks’ is widely practiced….. but the question is can parents really feel great about it? answer …honestly is no…. #parent spanks is an admittance that all else has failed #parent spanks is actually (no matter how we look at it) a use of their greater authority and power to inflict pain to ‘force’ a response (which in no way means the child understands why the behaviour is wrong or will not do that thing again if they think they can escape spanks)

And most importantly in Sports, spanks are good for the spanked …. 

for e.g. this T&T Women’s team after getting SPANKS, know they…







….. Yes getting SPANKS in Sports signals to the team that in the future there is a greater need to better prepare by working on nourishing or building kindred (the group/collective/team) skills to a level where they are better prepared for their opponents…

………..So SPANKS in Sports can #motivate and even #inspire in the future

But are spanks good for children?

When children get spanks they are learning that using power to force people to do what you want is okay, they are learning to externalize aggression, they might be learning to subdue or stifle their emotions/thoughts, and they are learning to give way to others regulating their behaviours….  

Unlike Sports there is no motivation within the child necessarily to improve any skill for the joy of it..but simply a desire to avoid that negative experience again…

To get the good spanks impact like sports, what parents might want to consider are using a range of means to discipline, show consequences of choices appropriate to the level of the child so that the child

Shows Progress Accepting New Keepable (worthy of keeping) Skills (which is actually what the parent desires, that the child would stop some behaviour and start and keep doing some new skill)

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