6 Ways to Help Your Kids Make New Year’s Resolutions
It's that time of the year, again, when we reflect back on the past year and reminisce, feel grateful, and resolve to do better in areas where we feel we've fallen short. Children often love to be in on the resolution making! If yours are like mine, they like to make resolution suggestions for you too … out of the mouths of babes, right? Here are a few things you'll want to keep in mind when helping and encouraging your kids to make New Year's resolutions.
While suggestions, and even guidance along the way, are great areas for parental input, the final decision of which resolution to make should, ultimately, be your child's.
1. Focus on the Positive
It's easy to look at the negative when we're talking about things we want to change. “I was such a couch potato this year,” or “I did awful on my math tests,” for example. We want this to be a positive experience for our children. Focus more on goal setting and positive outcomes, rather than on negative, past experiences. So, instead of working on “not being a couch potato,” you would make a goal, instead, to be more active and limit TV time. You can talk about several ways they might accomplish that positive goal.
2. Take Baby Steps Toward Your Big Goal
Just like a goal to be active takes lots of little choices, like getting outside, taking a walk, playing soccer, or turning the TV off, any big goal is going to include lots of small choices and tasks along the way. If your child has been struggling with math, you can focus on achievement in math, broken down into smaller parts. For example, your child's goal might be to “Spend at least 15 minutes, each night, studying for math, and solving problems,” or “Working to achieve at least a 90% on each math test.” Don't allow any talk of things that have already happened, which can't be changed. This activity is only about moving forward with a better outlook, and taking baby steps in order to get there.