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How Parents Who Focus On The Big Picture Help Their Youth Athletes

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It is all-too-easy for coaches, sports parents and athletes alike to catastrophize mistakes and setbacks. A focus on the big picture can help avoid that pitfall. In this video, former Stanford University gymnast and coach Larissa Fontaine recalls her mother consistently reminding her of long-term goals that put short-term obstacles in perspective.

Key to the message: no blind optimism, rose-colored glasses or other illusions. Fontaine describes her mother acknowledging the mistake, obstacle or setback, but then reminding her that all those apparent negatives may just mean a different path to the greater objectives of sport pursued for development as an athlete and as a complete person.

The consistent, unwavering message focused on the learning available and the joy still taken from the journey, regardless of short-term results.