Let’s face it, it’s hard to get our children to clean their rooms, eat their vegetables, and sometimes brush their teeth or shower (ewwww). With trying to get them to do the basic things, how on the Earth are you going to talk to them about setting goals. We live in a microwave society where everything is supposed to happen instantly and if it doesn’t it’s not worth it. Kids are supposed to achieve things right away or why even do it. Parental figures we are going to have to unplug the microwave and go back to the basics of waiting for things to heat up in the oven…
We have done the work to implant in our children that they can do whatever they put their minds to. Dream the impossible dream and then make it possible. What a wonderful thought of just being able to dream something and it happens for you. That’s cool if you have a magic wand but if you don’t, like most of us you will need to set goals and make a plan to achieve them. In my previous post and podcast episode I gave you some tools as to what adults can do to help position themselves to win. Now it’s time to help our children take on that same winning attitude. How do we do that? See below:
- Why is it important for children to set goals? If we plant the seed within our children that they can accomplish what they set out to do, how do they know how to get there? We have to take the time and have discussions with them about what they want to do and how they plan to do it. Now some goals will be huge and take time and others will be small, but no matter the end game we have to help them create the steps to help them achieve their goal. This starts by determining what the goal is and then setting up a process for them to achieve said goal.
- Every child has something they dream of doing. Some are realistic others not so much. Conversation is vital to the next step. Talk with your children about what they really want to accomplish and why they want to accomplish this. The may say I want to save $500, why do you want to save $500, how will you save $500??? Getting to the root of why they want to do something can help you gain clarity on the person you are raising and help you set them on the path to winning.
- Get Real! Now if your child wants to be a stylist to unicorns, that’s great, but is it a realistic goal?! Allow your child to be creative while setting a realistic goal that they can actually accomplish.
- Take time out! Ultimately it’s their goal to accomplish so allow them to be the lead on accomplishing it. Check in with them, ask how it’s going, offer your opinion IF ASKED! The whole purpose of them setting a goal for themselves is for them to navigate this process and figure things out. You can observe, be a listening ear but allow them to drive this ship.
- Hold them accountable! No matter how big or small once the goal is set then it needs to be accomplished. While you may not be in the driver’s seat of accomplishing the goal, back seat drive at some point and don’t allow your child to give up. Even if the goal has to be modified, instill in your children that once something is started they need to see it through.
- Celebrate! No matter how many times they have to start over or make changes to the goal, CELEBRATE the accomplishment. This will set the tone for a lifetime of getting things done and feeling good about the results.
I can’t tell you if my children will be doctors , lawyers, hair stylist, or karate instructors someday, but what I can tell you is that they will have the tools they need to accomplish the goals they set for themselves. What are you doing to help your children excel?
If you’d like to learn more about helping children set goals, tune into Episode 2 of The Parental Guidance Counselor podcast! Don’t forget to subscribe!