Everyone wants their children to succeed. One of the best ways to achieve that is to help them develop perseverance. It’s been proven time again that working hard is more important than intelligence or natural talent. So, how do you raise children who persevere in the face of difficulty? Here are three tips.
1. Praise Effort, Not Talent
Persevering people don’t rely on talent; they rely on hard work. Encourage this attitude in your kids by praising their hard work, rather than their innate qualities. For example, don’t say, "You're so smart!" or "You're so athletic!" Tell them, "Wow! You really worked hard at that! I can see that your work is paying off."
2. Lead by Example
Do you persevere at boring, hard tasks? Or do you give up at the first sign of challenge? Kids learn by watching their parents. If you want to raise a child who perseveres, show them what that looks like. Better yet, recruit their help on challenging tasks! For example, build a garden together, letting your child help with everything from planning the space to digging in the dirt to watering the plants.
3. Teach Them How to Achieve Goals
Creating a plan to achieve a goal is a learnable skill, and it’s important to help your children learn it early. Have your child think of something they want to do. Start with a small, reasonable goal, like finishing a craft project or reading a book that’s a bit difficult. Next, help them to break down the task into steps, and then schedule those steps. For example, they could read one chapter of a challenging book each week for several weeks. As they work toward their goal, praise their effort.
If your children don’t meet a goal, that’s also a chance to learn. Simple discuss what went wrong, what they learned, and how they can do it differently next time. Then, support them through that second goal.
Next time, join us as we discuss ways to persevere when you are studying.