Only when your child learns to do decision making that is against him or herself, will he or she move closer to a goal.
No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way. Hebrews 12:11
In order for your child to really reach his or her full potential, whether it’s in sports, music, art, or drama–whatever the interest–he or she must learn the importance of discipline. Another way of saying that is learning decision making that is against themselves.
In his book IF, author Mark Batterson explains:
Do you know someone who has six-pack abs? That person made a decision against themselves. They went to the gym when the rest of us went back for seconds. Or how about the person who earned their MD or PhD? They went to the library when the rest of us turned on the tv! It was that decision against themselves, made day after day, that helped them earn that degree. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a world-class athlete or a world-class musician; they got there by making decisions against themselves.
Making a decision against yourself simply means that you do what you know you should do and must do to succeed, even when you don’t feel like it.
No matter what your child loves–music, sports, art–it should be fun. But he or she cannot lose sight of the value of hard work, discipline, and sacrifice, which are not always fun.
If your child is not learning to make decisions against himself, to discipline himself to do things when he doesn’t feel like it, then he will grow up a weak-minded and weak-willed adult who gives up easily and as a result misses out on the reward that comes from hard work.
Teach your children, and show your children the value of decision making against themselves.