My grandson plays football in a local youth football league. We play other teams in surrounding counties. One week as we arrived at the stadium the prior game was still in progress and the visiting team had yet to get any points on the scoreboard. As I was looking for a place to sit I heard this man yelling from the stands, “This is pathetic. Ya’ll are an embarrassment to us!” Keep in mind he is yelling this at 9 and 10-year-old young boys who are giving it all their all and trying their hardest.
My first reaction was my heart breaking for those little boys out there and how that must have deflated them so much. They already felt bad as their score was 0. They didn’t need any reminding or discouraging remarks from the stands. My second thought was that this man needed to be removed from the stands and never allowed at another game.
His comment kept resonating with me during my grandson’s game. Why did he say that? Was he disgruntled? Maybe he had some personal issues? But still there was no reason to shout that to the boys. What kind of example was he setting? As parents, grandparents, and fans of teams we exhibit a broad range of emotions when cheering our team on! Depending on the volume of our emotion, we affect some, most, or all the others in the stands and on the field.
Not only is this true at ballgames, but also in our other roles in life – parent, grandparent, manager, employee, church member, volunteer, or any other role you may have. The way you respond to situations, whether positively or negatively, affects those around you. So, the next time you find yourself rooting for your “home team”, make sure you are setting the right example for everyone around you!