shoot for the MOON…
…even if you miss you will land among the stars
Teaching your child how to set goals is one of the best things you can do for their future. Setting a goal not only helps with motivation, it encourages kids to achieve their dreams in an organized fashion. The next time your child has an ambition, help them grow by showing them how to achieve even the biggest of goals.
encourage your kid to go big
Sure, many of the goals a child can concoct are unlikely. Going to Lego Land when you live on the other side of the continent from it costs about $4,000. Yet if your child is eager to save that much money, you should encourage them to do so. Even if they never make that $4,000 (or no longer want to go to Lego Land after it is saved) studies show that goal-setting is linked to higher achievement in life, and whatever money they do save is more than they had before.
make that big goal into a series of smaller goals
If the goal is to become an Olympic swimmer, one doesn’t simply show up at the games and dive in without even knowing how to swim. The same goes for achieving a big goal. The first step is to get swimming lessons and to find a way to practice as often as possible. According to a Fox59 article, breaking up a big goal into smaller ones also makes struggling forward easier because you can see your progress.
model goal setting for them
On New Year’s Eve, many of us set goals for better health, smarter finances, and higher learning. This is a tradition adults do, but it is also a great opportunity to introduce goals to children, and show them through your own actions how to set and achieve goals. (And let’s face it, when you know your children are watching and learning, you’re just a bit more likely to try harder for those goals.)
Drawing attention to the process, both from making the goal, breaking it into smaller ones, and then achieving those goals one by one is a great way to show kids how it is done. If you’re planning to lose weight, you can set a small goal of losing just one pound, or going on a walk every day, and let them see your starting weight, go on those walks, drink that extra glass of water, right along with you. When they see that successful loss (yes, even when the loss is one pound and your goal is 25) they might be more encouraged with their own goals.
Teaching your kid to dream big and aim big will help them later in life. The child that sets up their savings account to one day go to their favorite amusement park will be the child who isn’t afraid to try for Yale or Harvard later in life. Big goals make big successes, so helping your child now will pay dividends later.
books that encourage goal setting
Sharing books about others who followed their dreams and set goals along the way can inspire your children to do the same. A few great examples of stories that do a wonderful job setting the example are How To Catch A Star by Oliver Jeffers which tells the tale of a boy who sets a goal to catch a star and the various ways in which he tries to do just that, Salt in His Shoes: Michael Jordan in Pursuit of a Dream by Deloris Jordan is an inspiring story about how the famous basketball player, Michael Jordan almost gave up on his dreams because he feared he wasn’t tall enough until his parents shared their wisdom about what it really took to reach his goals, and Someday by Eileen Spinelli beautifully showcases the exciting future aspirations of a young girl and her current childhood experiences that can equip her with the skills to accomplish them.
Another great resource for giving your children the tools they need for success in reaching their goals is Big Life Journal! Through their journals and printables, kids can learn about having a growth mindset and the perseverance to achieve whatever they set their minds to.
Please enjoy this free Tot Tails coloring page to help share this message with your child.