Have you ever noticed that people who are really successful have first started with a goal in mind? They know where they want to be and they have a plan to get there. After they’ve decided what they want to achieve, they set to work. They use small, attainable goals to eventually reach the point they dream of.
Kids are no different. They need a goal and a plan to guide them in the right direction. Most parents have goals for kids but it’s also important for kids to set their own goals. By setting their own goals, kids learn to work hard to accomplish what they want. They learn to be responsible for their actions, whether or not they reach their goal. They learn to sacrifice to see change.
A new year is the perfect time to sit down and discuss your goals for kids.
It’s easy to set goals, the hard part is achieving them.
Begin setting goals for kids now to teach them to work hard for something they want in life. Share with them your goals. Maybe you can share a big goal you’ve accomplished or even a goal you didn’t achieve. Talking to them about your own goals will show them that even adults, who seem to have it all together, need to set goals for themselves.
Once you’ve decide which goals you’d like to focus on, you can get to work. Begin by breaking the goal down into smaller, more attainable goals. Instead of working to save $1,000 in the next year, aim to save $85 each month. By breaking it down into bite-size goals, you are less likely to lose motivation and give up on your goals altogether.
After you’ve broken your goals down, you need to put them in writing. Studies show that people who write their goals (and to-do lists) down, are much more productive. Seeing them on paper makes them more “real.” It’s also a good idea to write a brief statement about why you want to reach your goals. Looking to save $1,000 for a family vacation? Write all about it. Pour your heart and soul into it, being as detailed as possible. Documenting why you want to wake up to the sun rising over the ocean, with the sand on your toes and the cool breeze blowing through your hair is much more motivating that just saying “Go on vacation.” Speak life into your goals. Really think about how it will feel to achieve them and let that push you to work harder.
Taking a step-by-step approach to achieving your goals makes it easier to complete successfully. Create a simple plan to help you reach the goals. Making $85 each month without a plan isn’t going to be easy. Make a list of ways to raise money, whether you choose to have a yard sale or sell outgrown clothing. Once you’re armed with a plan, you’ve done the hardest part! Now you just need to get to work!
Try focusing on one goal at a time until you’ve made it a habit. (Habits are formed by doing the same thing for 21 days straight, without missing a day.) Find ways to squeeze your goals into your daily routine. Whether that means you need to go for a quick jog everyday or you need to start reading more books, it’s easier to do a little bit at a time.
While it’s a good idea to have long-term goals, your main focus should be on the smaller steps leading to the big goal. Don’t worry about running a marathon if you can’t even complete a 5K! Start small and work your way up to your big goals.
By teaching kids to set goals at a young age, you will be showing them that they are in charge of their decisions. They learn to be more productive, learn to plan ahead and to focus on the task at hand. They will grow confident in their ability to handle hard situations through prioritizing and perseverance.
But sometimes goal-setting is hard. Remember, these are the training years. We are not working with CEOs but instead children, who are being molded to lead future generations. If your child struggles or wants to give up on their goal, remind them of why they started in the first place. Be gentle with them, encouraging them to use their abilities and talents to succeed. Help them to understand that they are in control of their goals and the results they’ll get depend solely on themselves. This is an easy way to make them want to keep working, striving to attain what they originally set out to do. With hard work, they’ll be more satisfied with goals they’ve worked harder to achieve.
Help your kiddos stay on track by checking in with them frequently. Discuss how their plans are going and check to make sure they’re staying on track. Help them figure out how to maneuver around roadblocks and deal with disappointments. Sometimes it’s easier to set limits than quit something cold turkey. Instead of trying to give up electronics for good, try reducing the amount of time spent on them each week. Gradually reduce the time until they’ve reached their goal.
Goal setting is one of the most powerful tools you can use to increase your productivity. By teaching your kids young, you instill strong work ethic and responsibility that they’ll need as adults.
For an easy way to set goals for kids, try this fun and FREE printable to get you started in 2017!
Simply save our “Goals for Kids” printable (above) and print it directly from your computer!
Easy as can be, right!?!