Is the Trophy Child the Destruction to Our Society?

Back in the old days, there were winners and losers. The winners would get a trophy and the losers would get a pat on the back. In today’s society, everybody has to be a “winner”, but this only makes the winners look like they are not trying. You can’t appreciate the flavor of victory if you haven’t experienced defeat. 

Rather than having the youth work hard for a trophy and actually obtain skill, they can now receive an award just for participating, which isn’t fair to those who actually worked hard, practiced, and put in the effort. This is something that parents and organizations should not teach the youth, as it  results in kids thinking that they will be rewarded for doing the bare minimum.

We can stop this from continuing, but in order to do so, we must act fast. It may not be easy for parents, but losing is an important lesson for children to learn. Doing so will save parents stress in the long run from crying, to temper tantrums, etc. Not only will it help the parents, but it will help the children build a stronger, more motivated mindset.

Today’s youth is much more sensitive than they once were.. Nobody likes to lose, but even some of the greats said that losing was one of the best things that happened to them because it forced them to work harder, and build the confidence they need in order to achieve greatness. For example, Michael Jordan, one of the most highly ranked basketball players stated, “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot… and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” Meaning the reason he accomplished greatness and succeeded in life is because he grew from his losses. 

Kids should want to play sports because they enjoy the spirit of competition and working as a team, not for participation trophies. Parents may feel that when their child loses they should still receive a trophy; however, according to Dan Gould, a sports psychologist, featured in a 2017 Spartan NewsRoom article stated, “For rewards to work, they need to be earned. If you’re trying to increase a kid’s motivation, emphasize health or emphasize how fun it is to move or play ball.” It’s not the trophy that declares your victory, but how you performed and built skills. You could go buy as many trophies as you want, but it won’t make you a winner. A psychological study of Gold Medal Olympians, showed that athletes who accept loss are best prepared to win. 





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