Richard Sherman and teaching the boys about hard work

By now, certainly, you’re all aware that the Seattle Seahawks won Super Bowl XLVIII. This was one of the most exciting times for the Hansen household, and not just for this 38 year old long suffering Seattle sports fan. The boys were asking for Seahawks clothing, flew their NFC championship pennants around the house, and even wrote inspiration speeches that they recited before the game. They were able to *mostly* watch the entire game and cheered with reckless abandon throughout the evening. It was one of those great moments when the boys went to sleep with huge smiles on their faces.

Following the sage advice of “never waste a good crisis” I’ve been able to harness their excitement as a learning opportunity.

Allow me to back up a few weeks. The boys woke up on the morning of the NFC championship game against the 49ers uttering “Go Seahawks” as their first words. They were caught up in the excitement like everyone else in Seattle – with blue and green and 12 flags everywhere. While I think those who dislike sports may have a valid point, that maybe our passions are better spent on other civic matters, very few activities galvanize a community like a successful hometown team. For those of you outside of Seattle, Seahawks mania was EVERYWHERE. All we could talk about was the Seahawks, and Blue Friday celebrations became the norm. People who know nothing about football were wearing Seahawks swag.

The game against the 49ers ended with a fantastic defensive play, and my boys instantly fell in love with cornerback Richard Sherman. They have been bringing him up daily ever since. This eagerness was an opportunity to push forward my own parenting agenda.

I showed them several videos about Richard Sherman, and how well he prepares for the games. I brought up that he was raised in a dangerous neighborhood and used his mind to get out of it. I told about his time at Stanford, and how he uses his brain for success in the sports world. Are you catching the theme? They certainly did, and started to soak it all in.

Ironically, the boys are fans of the other football (soccer). Historically, they haven’t seen the need to practice and don’t take the time to think about the game seriously. Since this game, though, they’ve really been excited about thinking and sports. This has been such a new concept for them. They claim they want to practice now, to prepare to be “the best in the game” so to speak.

I’ve gotten to show them how to take the combination of hard work, talent, and mental preparedness leads to success. I can’t wait for Spring soccer now! While I have no doubt that the afterglow of the super bowl win will fade into the background, it is possible that this role model will remain front and center, and the boys can harness the best of themselves in sports and in life.

By the way, if you haven’t bought any Seahawks gear to commemorate this historic victory yet, the boys recommend you go here and look for anything with the numbers 25 and 48 (XLVIII).

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