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Thanks for checking out the weekly school newsletter article. The information is taken from the published book: 101 Practical Ways to Motivate your Child.

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Goal Setting

A great way of getting [and sustaining] motivation is to have a clear set of goals. Goals give focus to what we do as well as providing relevance to our daily tasks.

Many things have been written about goals and goal setting but here are three of my ideas to ponder before I give my way to turn a dream into a targeted goal.

  • Any goal your child has needs to be their own. Of course you can help them shape it through discussion – but if they don’t own it then it won’t have any power to cause them to be motivated.
  • Goals need to stretch us and create challenges to motivate us but not just the huge long term ones. If the goal is too big and too far in the distance then that will potentially demotivate us.
  • Goals need to be alive, vibrant and regularly viewed/reviewed. If they remain hidden in the cupboard they will lose both their impact and their ability to motivate.

A dream is something longed and hoped for but has no real sense of certainty to it ever coming to pass. The key for them to take their dreams and make them into S.M.A.R.T. goals.

S = specific
M = measurable
A = achievable
R = resourced
T = timely

Let me give you an example – let’s say your child is artistic in a drama sense and they have a dream to be famous one day. It may happen but a S.M.A.R.T. goal might be: I want to perform on Broadway by the time I am 30 years old.

By stating it in this way [check out each of the S.M.A.R.T. steps] it creates a more concrete picture and becomes a motivator. It will be a stretch to achieve it and may well benefit from smaller S.M.A.R.T. steps – for example:

I will become an active member of my local theatre company, performing on stage this year and/or I will audition for next years school production.

Help your child set goals – short, medium and long term – and see them be motivated as they achieve them. Just make sure you avoid the temptation to make them work towards your goals and not their own.

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