Communicating Concepts

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San Diego Figure Skating Communications

Who Should I Listen to?
Listen to an Unbiased Expert

Are You Constantly the Recipient of Advice?
Its not just your parents, but older siblings who will share their advice with you. Admittedly this is provided with the best of intentions. But too much of a good thing can cause more confusion than being helpful.  To add to the problem, young people are often the target of adults who feel they have "special insights" and wish to share with the benefits of their experience and wisdom.

Respect for advice givers

     Do you often receive too much advice and overload sets in?  It is worth the effort to figure out how to filter the advice and identify who you respect for their experience and objectivity. This should provide a short list of individuals you would go out of your way to seek advice. Anyone else not on your approved list may require that you politely listen to their advice and as quickly as possible disengage yourself from the conversation.

     Obviously it is a waste of time to listen to any individual whose advice does not have your best interests in mind.  Some people may attempt to discourage you and fill you with their negativity. The problem is how do you differentiate between this type of person and  those who know what they are taking about and only have your best interests at heart.

     The following are possible situations that illustrate why listening to some people can be a complete waste of time:

  • People sometimes are unable to communicate in an effective and proper manner:  As a result they might say something that doesn't add any clarity to the situation and only serves to muddy the waters.
  • Some people have their own agendas: A person might offer negative comments to make them feel better than you. Some individuals will put you down in order to elevate their own self worth.  Others may attempt to destroy your confidence to provide an advantage for another athlete.
  • They lack self confidence: Those individuals who lack self esteem tend to be very critical of their friends. They may justify their comments as a way of "helping" their friends learn to think and improve. The problem is with the person providing the negative comments, not with you!
  • People view the world according to their beliefs: This type of individual attempts to expand their personal experiences into a global truth. It would be wise to take such advice with a large dose of skepticism when a person lives in a the world shaped by their own belief system and especially if you do not share these beliefs.
  • Some people are mean spirited: Jealous, insecure, and mean spirited people will use every opportunity to discourage and put others down. It is best to avoid such an individual or if that is not possible, disengage from any conversation as soon as possible. Avoid, if possible, attempting to engage them in a conversation as even listening to this individual is a waste of time!
Carefully select those you chose to be your mentor
       If you respect or admire the individual, then you will be more open to hearing their "constructive" criticism. Only a "true" friend will be frank enough to say what you need to hear, not just what you want to hear.

       The constant stream of negative comments masquerading as positive feedback can be very destructive.  Objective feedback provides an opportunity to view situations from an alternative point of view. This view of your actions may not be pleasant to hear, but it is essential to mitigate or eliminate forces and actions in your life that are obstacles to attaining your goals.

       Most people feel more comfortable if they are surrounded by people who are very supportive. However. if the support occurs because they feel it is their job to be a "Yes" person and "rubber stamp" your decisions, this only postpones the time when you must face reality and come to grips with the fact you have made mistakes in your choices and decisions. Unfortunately, this time may not occur while there is still time to refocus and redirect your energy towards accomplishing your original set of goals.

Recommended Reading:

Factors to Consider when Selecting an Expert  by Rosemary N. Palmer, Esq.

PDF Selecting an Expert   The appearance of neutrality is critically important to an expert's believability. • An excessive fee is not a guarantee.

Subject Matter Experts (SME)  Criteria is presented as a guideline for selecting good subject matter experts for a job.

PDF Managing A Subject Matter Expert   Your client has limited and a short completion date.... Selecting the right individual or group of subject matter experts (SMEs), is your responsibility.

Office of Personnel Management Hiring Process Model   Human Relations professionals or a panel of subject matter experts (SMEs) evaluate qualified applicants in accordance with the assessment method(s) selected in Step 5.

Credentials: Choosing Subject Matter Experts   Sept. 25, 2007 ... Choosing Subject Matter Experts. An article advocating that associations that change their volunteer leadership structure and elections process to ensure that they have qualified leaders sitting on committees and boards. For certifying agencies, qualified volunteers are also needed as subject matter experts to participate in the development of assessment instruments. We went through our archive of resources and came up with these tips for selecting a balanced and qualified group of SMEs.


Physical and Mental Training Considerations

Skater. Parent, and Coaching Issues


The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:

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