May 15, 2018
Hi there! Today I’m sharing with you 4 ways to keep your child motivated. Yes, it’s true that some kids are innately motivated but others need a little more. Today’s post is about how to keep your child motivated and how to parent with intention.
My entire life I have tried to set high goals. My parents always made me feel as though I truly could do anything. I suppose I took for granted that everyone’s parents were the same. The truth is that sadly it is not this way at all. So many kids are going through life day by day thinking that they are destined to live the life their parents have created. It is sad really when you think about it. Who knows what talents and traits lay hidden inside of these children.
Goal Setting. Take the time to sit with your children, even as young as 5 years old, and set goals. Let your child lead in what they want those goals to be. Do not laugh or ridicule a goal even if it seems ridiculous or unreachable to you. It is important to instill in them the idea that with hard work and perseverance anything is possible.
I believe that short term goals are just us as important, or even more important, than long term goals. The short term goals are what will bring you closer to the long term goals, so choose them wisely. Help your children see the bigger picture but help them by coming up with a plan to get there. Write down the goals. Perhaps buy a “goal notebook” that they can keep and look at from time to time. It will keep them motivated.
- Explain to your child that anything that is worth attaining will not be easy. There will be setbacks and they will fail. When this happens, the focus must be on what you do after this happens. Do you chose to stop and give up on your dreams?… or do you stop and reflect on what happened and learn from it. Sometimes we need to make a mistake to learn a lesson or see something more clearly. Do not get discouraged from these setbacks. These moments are the ones that you learn from the most.
- Encourage your child to be proactive when they fail. If they failed a test and didn’t understand something, have them set up a meeting with the teacher to learn what they didn’t understand. It is not only about the grade. It is important to learn for the sake of learning and to explore what you can do differently in the future. Otherwise, these mistakes and grades mean nothing.
- Do not allow the final grade to determine your child’s self worth or potential. Help your child go back and review how they studied and perhaps find new strategies to improve their grade on the next assessment.
Always “talk” to your kids. Listen really….the truth is when you REALLY listen to your kids, you will learn so much about what they are thinking, what they are worrying about, etc. This pertains to small kids and teens.
- Listen. We all want to be heard. When you stop to really listen to your child, without judgement, you will see that relationship grow in ways that you could only dream of.
So, go out there and sit with your child, set goals, listen and enjoy their journey into adulthood. It is the best part of being a parent-helping your child find their true potential.
Elizabeth Vainder, M.D.