HOW TO INSPIRE MY CHILD
Maintain your connection.
Spend time together with your child doing things he/she likes. It might be a good idea to play a computer game together, do a sport, watch a sport competition or a movie, go glamping.
AVOID: dragging your child to the places YOU like and they don’t – you may try once or twice but if it doesn’t work – don’t torture them.
DO: ask them what they would like to do, give them options, explore new things together, look for the things you will both enjoy.
Teach your child practical skills – cooking, cleaning, ironing removing stains, doing the laundry, the dishwasher, shopping for food and clothes, organizing and tidying their things, packing their own suitcase, fixing things around the house. Being able to do these things gives your child power and confidence, easily creates a sense of achievement which is the corner stone of motivation and growth.
AVOID: criticizing failed effort, telling off for mistakes or ruining things, taking over and sending them away because you can do it better.
DO: praise every effort, enjoy any result, encourage to finish what they started, be prepared for some things to be damaged, create opportunities to try more things more often. Start at the age of 3yo but it’s never too late.
Discuss their vision of the future.
I want you to be strong, independent and happy. You need to know what to do if… I see your bright future – you can achieve everything by yourself. When you achieve things by yourself – you will be proud and happy. I want to see you proud of yourself and happy with your life. You have a great potential – I want to see you release it and enjoy your life.
Discussing the future we set some practical goal to aim for.
AVOID: criticizing their idea of the future (even if they say they are planning to earn money by playing computer games), forcing your vision of their future occupation or family situation (you have to be a programmer), setting goals that are too materialistic (I want you to have a big house and 3 children).
DO: voice expectations based on self-fulfillment, happiness and realizing their potential.
Responsibility and praise.
Define areas where you expect your child to fully take care of the situation. It may start little – with brushing their teeth, having a regular shower and making their bed. Praise them for doing this without being reminded.
Move on to bigger things – keeping things in order, doing homework, cooking for themselves if they have to, taking care of getting their clothes washed and ironed, taking care of pets.
AVOID: forgetting about the responsibilities you set – monitor daily until the habit is formed (for about 1-2 months), nagging – set clear consequences for not doing the responsibility.
DO: praise every effort towards doing the things they have to be responsible for, start with 1-2 responsibilities, introduce 1 extra only after the first skills are learnt.
It is vital to have free time to look around, think, live offline. It’s natural to feel bored – boredom is the mother of great ideas and creativity. Let it happen. Let your child redecorate their room, cook, sort their things, doodle and look for things to do.
Be a role-model.
Think what inspires you to do great things or to change? Are you often inspired and motivated? Tell your child about your achievements and about how they make you feel. They must know what a fulfilled life looks and feels like, how rewarding it is to reach your goals. Share your life with your child and they will follow you!
Head Psychologist MC Education & MCS School
Founder MC Education & MCS School