Sometimes your best is not enough

James Harrison, linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers, is a no-nonsense father who believes that hard work is a reward in and of itself.

Harrison has two sons and, understandably, his sons are athletes as well. Upon returning home Harrison realizes his sons have been awarded “participation trophies” by the sports league that they play in. While most “modern parents” would take to social media to brag about such a situation, Harrison did exactly the opposite.

Stating that he doesn’t want his sons to grow up thinking that they’re “entitled to something because they tried their best,” Harrison will be returning these trophies to the league that awarded them to his sons. Is he doing this to punish his sons? Absolutely not. In fact, he is trying to teach his sons a valuable lesson, one that seems to have been all but forgotten in our modern parental mindset.

Harrison’s overall goal is to teach his children that “sometimes your best is not enough, and that should drive you to want to do better.”

Is this a good thing? Obviously it is a matter of opinion, and while most parents may disagree with the method of this lesson, the overall message is most certainly an important one. Harrison is not alone in this mindset, and in all honesty, this is a mindset that needs to be encouraged.

If children are rewarded simply for showing up, how does this skew their outlook on life? What happens when they get out into the real world, the cut and dry world that we all live in day to day, and come to terms with the fact that life is hard work? Will they rise to the challenge and grind on, or will they collapse like a house of poorly placed cards?

All in all, cheers to Harrison for doing what a father should do, and if we are lucky this mindset will continue to grow now that it has reached national attention.