The beginning of a New Year is an opportune time to teach your child how to set a goal as well as to discuss the wonderful feeling of achieving one’s goal. The ability to set a goal for oneself is an important skill.
Try explaining goal setting as simply as possible. For example, “setting a goal for yourself is choosing something that you want to accomplish and then taking the steps to make it happen.” A phrase to keep in mind is, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me!” Explain that a person is in charge of achieving his or her goals, and that while a person can ask for, and receive help and support, ultimately it is one’s own responsibility.
- 90% of successful people set goals.
- By setting goals, a person chooses where they will go in life.
- By setting a goal, a person can achieve more, improve performance, increase self-esteem, and increase self confidence.
- By setting a goal, a person can feel less stress, concentrate better and feel happier!
Basic Steps to Goal Setting: Be S.M.A.R.T., make your goal Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Bound.
Specific: Define what is important to you; what do you want to accomplish? Decide exactly what you want your goal to be. For example, instead of “get better grades” the goal should be stated as, “I will earn a B or better in math.” Instead of “make more friends” the goal should be stated as, “I will invite someone new over to my house to play.”
Measurable: Include precise amounts or dates so you know when you have met your goal. For example, “I will complete my math homework every day” or “I will invite a new friend over to play once a month.”
Attainable: Give your goal some real thought. Is it YOUR goal or really your parents? Is it actually possible or too far out of reach? For example, “I will get a part that I enjoy in the school play” may be more attainable then, “I will be the lead in the school play.”
Relevant: Your goal must further you in the direction you want to go in. Review your goal once a month and determine if it is still important to you. Talk about your goal with a parent or teacher. If the goal is no longer of interest, feel free to change it!
Time-Bound: A deadline is essential so you know when to celebrate your success! It feels so great to achieve a goal so choose an end time that is realistic. For example, “I will complete my math homework every day for four weeks.”
And of course the best part of goal setting: choose a reward for when the goal is met. 🙂Talk with your child about celebrating the achievement of meeting a goal. Have your child take the time to enjoy the feeling of satisfaction of a job well done. Tell your child they deserve a reward! And if they didn’t achieve the goal, take the time to reflect on what happened. Was the goal unrealistic? Did your child try his or her best? And remember, a goal can always be adjusted the goal and a person can always try again!
Goal setting is empowering because it provides a focus and a true sense of accomplishment when the goal is met. Teaching your child to set a realistic goal is giving the gift of knowing how dreams can become a reality.
If you would like to talk about ways to teach your child to set a goal, or any other parenting question, please give me a call at 310-849-6751 or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Lets talk!
I look forward to talking with you! All my best, Jeri