Helping Your Kids Set Goals for the New Year

How to help your kids to set goals for the new year?

set goals for kids

Photo by Gabriel Tovar on Unsplash

We all want our kids to be happy, healthy, and successful, but how can you ensure they develop the strengths they need to live up to their fullest potential? One way is to help them set goals and support them as they work toward achieving them.

This tactic can be truly helpful for your child and teaches them valuable lessons to use throughout their lives. Take these steps to help your kids set goals for the new year.

Set goals with your kids

Goal-setting helps kids learn how to establish priorities and decide what they want their lives to look like in the future. You can help them identify specific ways they can improve their lives during the next year.

Setting goals also help kids feel more confident about themselves because they can track their progress and achievements over time. Help your child set a goal by asking them what they want to accomplish and ensure it is achievable. That way, they keep their motivation going throughout the entire process. 

You and your kids may not have any ideas for a New Year’s resolution. Here are some top suggestions that your kids can use to help set their goals:

  • Eat healthier
  • Become more active
  • Read more and reduce screen time
  • Help around the house and do chores
  • Make new friends
  • Learn a new skill
  • Be more environmentally responsible
  • Spend time with family

Break the goal down into small steps

Once your child establishes a goal, the next step is to break it down into smaller steps. This will make it easier to get started because they will feel the progress they’ve made after each stage, motivating them to keep going.

Ensure these steps are achievable and flexible enough for unexpected circumstances to occur. The last thing you want for your child is to feel discouraged because it was too hard or impossible to do at this stage in their life.

Help your child understand the purpose and value of their goal

It’s important to understand the purpose and value of a goal. Your child needs to grasp why they want to achieve their milestone. Otherwise, they’ll be less likely to complete it.

Asking questions like, “What does achieving this goal mean to you?” or “Why do you want to do this?” can help them better understand the purpose. When asking these questions, avoid providing any suggestions as answers. They should be able to come up with their own reasons.

Provide the necessary tools

Be specific about what tools they will need. Your kids need to know what resources will help them achieve their goals. Perhaps you can offer examples of things they’ll need.

For instance, if they’re trying to eat healthier, you could suggest downloading a smartphone app for kids to help them keep track of what they’re eating.

Ensure your suggestions are specific enough and resources are available.

Help your child stick to their goal

The most important thing you can do is be patient and encouraging. Kids often want to give up when they don’t see immediate results. Therefore, you must remind them that changes take time. Remind them why they wanted the goal in the first place or share how great it will feel when they accomplish it. 

If your child isn’t making progress at some point, you may need to step in and help them along. Your job is to help them keep going. For instance, it might require you to take over some of their responsibilities so they can focus on accomplishing their goals.

Young kids can have goals, too

You’re never too young to have goals. You can help your children learn about the process and make them happen. Even 4-year-olds can set goals for themselves. At this age, you might start with something small — such as what they want to eat for lunch. However, once your child gets older, you can help them develop longer-term goals involving more than today’s food selection.

Once they determine what they want to achieve, you can teach them how to create a plan — and ask follow-up questions to come up with creative solutions.

Help your kids succeed

The new year is a great time to start setting goals. With the right support, your children can do it, too. They must know how much you believe in them and that you’re willing to help them achieve their dreams.

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