We all know the power of setting goals. Instill the habit of setting goals in your child, and they’ll be much more successful in life. By developing the habit at a young age, setting goals will be automatic later in life.
When children make decisions and are successful, they’re happier and more confident! Just like any adult.
Setting goals is a valuable skill at any age
- Start small. Before beginning any task, ask your child what the goal is.
‣ Make my room clean
‣ Get an “A” on my vocabulary test
‣ Organize my books
‣ Finish reading this book
- Ensure that your child is successful. If the goal is to finish the book, make sure the book gets read. Help her study for her vocabulary test.
‣ Most of us are good at setting goals and making plans. It’s the execution that’s challenging. Teach your child to complete what they start.
- Set goals together for the week. Share some of your goals and encourage your child to set some goals. The goals could be nearly anything.
‣ Eat at McDonald’s once this week.
‣ Go to see a movie.
‣ Go to bed by 8:00 every night.
‣ Ask Mary to spend the night.
‣ Share some of your own goals, such as cleaning out the garage, paying the bills, or washing the car.
‣ Sit down together each night and review your collective progress. Make plans to achieve your goals. Teach the habit of regularly reviewing your goals each day.
- Set multi-step goals. It’s easy to get in the car and drive to McDonald’s, but that’s okay. Small goals count, too. Encourage your child to set one goal that will take a few weeks of effort. It might be learning a piece of music on the piano or earning $25 by the end of the month doing jobs around the house.
‣ Choose a goal that will require consistent effort and track your child’s progress. The discipline needed to achieve a bigger goal creates a bigger thrill. It’s also great practice for the future.
‣ Be sure to set a deadline. A goal without a deadline is rarely achieved.
Even younger, school-aged children can set and achieve goals. The quality of the goal isn’t as important as developing the habit of setting goals. We tend to carry habits throughout our lives. Teach your child to set, review, and achieve goals now. The success and control over life your child will experience will make him happy and confident.
Raising children uses every bit of your being – your heart, your time, your patience, your foresight, your intuition to protect them, and you have to use all of this while trying to figure out how to discipline them. – Nicole Ari Parker
Next Chapter: Dealing with Fears