For many people, a new year means that it’s time to look back on the last 12 months and resolve to do better in certain areas. Whether it’s exercise, diet or getting up earlier, there are lots of ways everyone can benefit from making resolutions. Our children especially can learn a lot about self-discipline and start to see the value in setting resolutions and goals. Not only can it be a valuable teaching moment about setting goals and sticking to them, but the practice of choosing an achievable resolution for the new year can be a fun way for kids to develop their communication and decision-making skills. Here’s some ways you can help your children make their New Year’s resolutions for 2019 -
Focus on the positives
Instead of focusing on the negatives from last year, try and keep resolution setting positive. Encourage your kids to focus on goal setting and positive outcomes. Replace “I could have studied harder” with “I am going to study for 30 minutes everyday.” Putting a positive spin on things will help your kids be more excited about their resolutions and will stick to them better.
Make suggestions, but let your kids choose
Even though you know your child best and the areas which could use a little improvement, it’s important to offer a few suggestions but ultimately let them decide. New Year’s resolutions should be your child’s own personal commitment – if they don’t feel as though they’re the ones setting the goal, chances are they won’t feel a strong desire to stick to it.
Make it a tradition
The easiest way to teach your children the importance of setting New Year’s resolutions is to make it a family tradition. Discuss accomplishments and goals individually but also as a family. Everyone will have a lot more fun this way, and it’s an added bonus having some accountability partners. You never know when some encouragement will be needed.
Keep the list small
It’s important for your kids to only choose one or two New Year’s resolutions at a time. If your child starts making a super long list, it will only make them feel overwhelmed and hesitant to start working on anything. Keep the list small and achievable so your children can succeed!
Remember that when it comes to resolutions, it's important for parents to lead by example. Your child is more likely to accomplish her resolution if she sees you sticking to your own goal (which can be tough!). And don't be afraid to adjust your goals along the way if they're becoming stale or if you actually accomplish them. There's value in teaching kids to follow through on a goal long-term, even if they need to tweak it along the way.
Best of luck with the resolutions, and Happy New Years!