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Why Inspirational Words of Appreciation Matter

for parents, youth, and humans with pro athlete Trevor Huffman


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Trevor Huffman

3 years ago | 3 min read

Inspirational words of appreciation matter.

What are they good for? Who needs gratitude or appreciation, and better, voicing it to those real humans around them? Do athletes, parents, and humans think appreciation isn’t a thing anymore?

The world is more becoming more entitled than ever.

People want success, peace of mind, and health without doing the work.

Without enjoying the process.

Many of us aren’t enjoying the experience, yet we are trying validate ourselves with an outcome.

Today is Sunday. I can’t think of a time I voiced thanking my brother, friends, or family in the last few days (or weeks). When I reflect on my actions in my practicing gratitude journal, I realize there are two layers to gratitude:

Internal reflection and awareness.
External voicing with inspirational words of appreciation.

Why should athletes, humans, and parents practice the art of gratitude — especially voicing those words to the people they come across in day to day life?

For starters, we can change our happiness levels by 25%. Peace of mind increases. Stress decreases. And because we can become what we desire through self-awareness and starting small behavior changes (like gratitude journals).

A happy, grateful athlete and human does more. Experiences more. And ultimately, achieves more.

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My practice of gratitude is now creating an impetus to voice my thanks to the people that help me in life.

Right now. This is the secret sauce.

Right now is all we have.

Who can you call, text, or thank in person today?

“Thank you for __________,” is such an easy, but a hard thing to remember to do.

The art of practicing gratitude increases our positive feelings of love, playfulness, freedom, and peace of mind, just as playing for experiences instead of outcomes creates more meaningful memories for athletes.

Experience winning is as simple as teaching your kids to develop self-control through a daily 21-day basketball challenge.

Winning titles or succeeding your sport, your business, or your relationships never happens without embracing the moment of your experience. Right now is what matters. Moment after moment, you get to practice inspirational words of self-awareness, appreciation, and gratitude — this makes you experience the feelings and emotions that most humans can’t seem to figure out.

“I’m grateful for you,” are some of the most powerful words a coach, athlete, or parent can utter to their team, coach, or family (or heck, stranger). Practicing gratitude has been proven to change the course of a human’s happiness, health, and productivity.

My goal is to coach and mentor grateful parents, humans, and athletes.

Are you grateful for your parents driving you to sporting events? For them sacrificing their time and energy to pay for teams, clubs, and travel?

Are you the parent that isn’t grateful for the minimum wage coaches, referees, and support personnel at tournaments, 3x3 Gus Mackers, and AAU games?

Are you the parent getting emotionally hi-jacked that’s putting their angst, frustration, and dreams on a child that just wants to play a sport, get better a sport, and learn how to be their best at their sport?

The Definition of Play:

  • intransitive verb: To occupy oneself in an activity for amusement or recreation.
  • intransitive verb: To take part in a sport or game.

Who I am thankful to today? Who am I giving my inspirational words of appreciation to today?

I’m thankful for those cousins, friends, family, and mentors that have taken the time to challenge my thinking, my habits, and what I thought I was capable of experiencing in my life.

I’m so grateful for my mom, my dad, my cousin John Evans for talking me through retirement, my brother Damon for helping me get through the Sunday Scaries (which lasted every day for a year), my brother Jeremy for allowing me to play sports and teach his daughters how to increase their performance through rituals. I’m thankful for Travis Thomas for his tutelage.

The powerful and inspirational words of appreciation in sport help us celebrate our daily experience and that’s all we have to focus on — doing our best today. Not thinking about tomorrow. Or what scholarships I’ll get. Or how good my kid will be at basketball.

Just enjoy the experience. Don’t try to validate yourself with an outcome.

This article was originally published by Trevor huffman on medium.

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