Hi everyone and welcome to this week's Motivate Me, which is all about body image, self-esteem and the impact of social media on teenagers.
At the beginning of the week, Christian Ronaldo, arguably one of the greatest footballers of all time, caused a sensation at the 2020 European Championship.
Was it something on the field?
Was it a red card?
No, at a press conference after the game, he "moved" two bottles of Coca-Cola from the press table where he was sitting to one side. Then he held up a bottle of water and underscored his preference by saying, "Agua".
It's important to note that Coca-Cola is one of the main sponsors of the 2020 UEFA European Championship, but a tournament spokesperson defended Ronaldo, saying that everyone is "entitled to their drink preferences".
Paul Pogba, the French star, also caused a stir. Pogba is a practicing Muslim and does not drink alcohol. That explains why he wanted to remove the Heineken before his post-game press conference.
The UEFA machine went into full swing to appease both camps – the sponsors and the players' “preferences”.
There was a marked (over) reaction to Ronaldo's actions and nervous investors sold Coca-Cola shares, which caused the value of Coca-Cola to fall by more than 4 billion euros.
Remember last week when I wrote about mimetic behavior – "Once the first stone is thrown, the second stone becomes easier to throw."
Will other sports stars follow Ronaldo's example?
Can the Ronaldo government follow suit?
Can parents follow Ronaldo's example?
This is my cue to introduce a three part podcast series called Connecting the Dots. This series addresses a number of problems faced by both teenagers and their parents. Part 1 is in the can and can be heard here.
This podcast series is going to challenge you and ask you some big questions, but on the flip side, it also offers compassion and a warm hug. My co-host on the show is Stuart Wilson of ZestLife, a behavioral psychotherapist who specializes in adolescent and adolescent and family therapy, and he's a parent too, and as we both like to admit, we're not perfect and we're always learning too . Our children do not live in a bubble and they too face many of the challenges your children face.
Don't cancel this email just because your kids are adults and have flown the nest. It is doubly important to note that the youth phase can go beyond 24 years.
Furthermore, the manner in which we openly and frankly discuss the podcast is in stark contrast to Ireland in the 1980s and 1990s, when much of what we talk about on the podcast was banned and not open to public discourse. Why do I mention this? Out of the air, Stuart told me that he has a client who is 80 years old and is visiting Stuart's clinic to bridge an unstable relationship with his 60-year-old son.
Trust me, there is invaluable knowledge from Stuart no matter how old you are; be it the teenager, the parents, the grandparents, the aunt or the uncle, the souvenirs from this podcast series are life-improving and life-enriching. The impact of social media on teenagers is the first step and I look forward to sharing the second podcast early next week.
And kudos to teenage boy Eoghan Brennan who has 6 stones weight loss played a key role in helping me connect the dots and put together this particular podcast series. You can listen to Eoghan's story about weight loss here.