Goals give a direction and a purpose to life. Goal setting for kids helps them to understand the importance of every task they take up and makes them responsible towards accomplishing it. Here are few tips to help you set goals for your child.
What did you say when you were asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Pat came the answer, “I want to be like my father”, if you are a boy and “I want to be like my mother”, if you are a girl. It all seemed easy then. The question and the answer clearly suggest, that kids try to emulate their parents. Thus, workaholic parents, living under a misconception that school shapes the child, pay attention! Your kids are trying to follow your footsteps. Another interesting characteristic of the aforementioned small talk is, the person asking the question, is making the child think of a futuristic situation and the child is deliberately listening, and then responding to the question. But what happens when kids avoid such questions? There are ways of goal setting that parents and teachers can work around to help the child overcome simple obstacles and emerge as a winner of predetermined goals.
Probe the Interests of the Kid
Ask and find out what interests your child. Let your child do the talking, while you be a good listener. Usually, parents push their children to pursue academics to ensure success, without considering their interests. Your child may be good at a certain subject or certain sport, or may have good language skills or may have an above average skill for understanding music.
Write the Goal
Let your child pursue what interests him/her. Make your child write down, why is he/she wants to achieve this goal. Ask your child to support this goal with a reason. Say for instance, the goal is: I want an “A” grade on my English paper. The reason for this goal could be: I want an “A” on my English paper so that I can get an extra hour of TV. The reason may seem frivolous to you, but they are equally important to your child. Encourage the child by telling him/her that the goal is attainable if efforts are put in.
Plan of Action
Once you have a goal, outline a specific plan of action. Make a plan day by day and hour by hour of how the goal is being achieved. As you make this plan, your child will begin realizing the time wasters and will automatically, cut down on them. A course of action will give your child the exact way to reach the goal.
An important part of goal setting is overcoming obstacles. Obstacles are a part of earning every achievement. Help your child to overcome obstacles through motivation techniques. Encourage your child to see beyond them by showing the child that obstacles are just a temporary phenomenon.
Every goal is deadline driven, thus, time management is of utmost importance. Keep track of the efforts your child is putting in, to get to the goal in time. The goal has to be achieved in a set deadline so procrastination is not something that your child can afford to do right now. However, not achieving the goal can make your child depressed and discouraged. Thus, work with your child on every step to help accomplish the goals.
Goal setting for kids is in itself a goal to be achieved by parents, teachers, and children, together. A crucial aspect of teaching your child about goal setting is, to follow what you are preaching. Make small promises to your child and fulfill them, as this ensures that your child looks up to you in every manner. Thus, give your child an opportunity to emulate an ideal example of goal setting.