How to Help Our Kids Pursue “YES”

Hey friends,


Here is what I know:


One of the biggest challenges our kids will face is to “continue going” despite obstacles, closed doors, and hearing “no.” 


Napoleon Hill said: ”Winners never quit, quitters never win.” 


My dream for our kids is that they are the winners. They know what they want, have a burning desire to achieve it, and are unstoppable in their pursuit.


Have you done cold calling before and got hung up on 99% of your calls? Have you tried to gain buy-in to a new idea to be shut down by “this can’t be done”? Have you gotten a rejection letter when you applied for a job, university, or team? What was your response? Have you ever given up? I know I have, and, looking back, I wished I would’ve tried again!


I bet our kids will get more “no” responses in their lives than “yes.” How can we help our kids develop the unstoppable spirit of a champion who does not quit, keeps enthusiasm up, and does not negotiate on their dream?


Here's a tool that my mentor Deb Ingino, a brilliant coach to CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, taught me several years ago. It’s simple, visual, easy to remember, and works with high-achievers of all ages.


1. Take a deck of cards.

2. Ask your child to select a card.

3. Shuffle the deck.

4. Ask your child to start flipping one card at a time, until they find the card they have selected.

5. Together, count the number of cards the child flipped over before finding their card.

6. Reflect: Ask them how they felt when they could not find their card for the first time, second time, 20th time… whatever time. Most likely, they’ll say it was not a big deal, they were just flipping cards in anticipation to find their card.

7. Wrap it up: Tell them that this is exactly how it is in life. With everything we want, the chances are we won’t get it on our first try. [give some examples. Bonus - use a real example from your life!] Here’s the secret - life is like this deck of cards, where you are looking for your “yes.” When you try, and flip a “no” card, just keep trying. Just as you were flipping the cards, without feeling sad, frustrated, or feeling inadequate in any way, keep on going until you find what you want. “No” is not a reflection of who you are, what you deserve, or what your dream is. “No” is something to celebrate, because with every “no,” you’re much closer to your “yes!” [Add more conversation/brainstorm/analogy as needed]


Come back to this conversation every time you feel your child is ready to give up. Remind them that what they’re doing is no different than looking for a specific card in a deck. Remember how silly would it have been if you stoped on the first or second card, knowing for sure that your card was in that deck! Keep on going.


Another bonus :) - put your kid in a leadership role. Give them a deck of cards and ask them to share this with someone else (perhaps a family member that was not part of the original discussion, friend, etc.).


This simple tool has generated many “A-ha!” moments, even for adults during my sales and leadership trainings. Imagine what a difference it would've made had we developed this habit as kids.


I carry a deck of cards in my purse as a reminder to never quit, no matter how many “no” responses I get. My pursuit of “yes” has became my motto. 


As our kids will be making small steps towards what seems to be impossible, the spirit of a winner who never quits will help them build their wings.




Think Big. Start Small. Act Now!

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