Setting goals with kids

Friday, January 4, 2019

Last summer, the kids received planners as gifts from a birthday party. I decided to teach them about goal setting.

I quickly realized they didn't know what a goal was. I told them that a goal is something they want to do. Because we were at the end of the summer, we focused on goals for the school year.

The most fun part for me was to hear them talk about their goals. I kept the max at 3 items because I know from experience that setting too many goals is a recipe for being overwhelmed and distracted.

I honestly did not treat the kids like little adults when it came to their goals. I might have reminded them of their goals twice. More often, I reminded them of the small steps they needed to take in order to reach their goals. Those small steps included paying attention in school, doing homework and reading.

We celebrated their achievements. We never threw a party or bought them expensive gifts. We affirmed them on the hard work they did. It led them to the results they got.

My intention with this process was to teach a skill to the kids. I believe that this skill can be applied in different areas of their life.

But what if they fail? I believe that failure can teach us a lot. When the kids fail, we encourage them to try harder and not to give up. Failing doesn't make you a failure. Failing makes you educated and able to get new strategies as you continue to proceed to your goals.

Here are the steps:

• Teach the kids your definition of “goal” is
• Tell me why goals are important
• Let them set 3 goals or less
• Celebrate their achievements and affirm them