“If he’s very smart … He’s just lazy.” How many times have we heard this? It is one of the most typical phrases that parents and teachers say to explain the school failure of some children. We are faced with children with good understanding, a good memory, who just “read it a couple of times and remember things.” So we ask ourselves “Why is it suspending?” “It is vague” they reply.
If we do not want to meet an adolescent like that, it is important to teach children from an early age the value of effort. The brain has plasticity, which is more pronounced in the early years . For this reason, it is easier to learn languages or play instruments if we start when we are small. On the other hand, the brain also tends to be comfortable, it does not like to strain. Therefore, the more we get used to doing nothing, the less we will want to do. If we do not teach our children to strive for things from a young age (give them toys even if they have misbehaved, let them play without studying first …), they will end up learning that they can get rewardswithout lifting a finger. And they will do less next time. It is not difficult if we educate them well from a young age. It will be if we allow these situations to be repeated over time.
Giving the child everything he wants and not giving him responsibilities is just a way to overprotect him. And that will not help you at all in life, you will only learn to carry your responsibilities to others. What more consequences does it entail? Not learning to value things (material and non-material), lack of enthusiasm, easily bored, bad behavior … It is even easier that when adolescence reaches the consumption of psychoactive substances to obtain pleasure easily.
We cannot let our children form a weak, capricious personality, that they are not capable of setting goals and objectives. If we do not teach the capacity for effort and sacrifice, we fall into neglect, disorder and mediocrity.
HOW TO PROMOTE THE VALUE OF EFFORT?
First of all, you have to give your child reasons to work hard. A goal, something you want to achieve. Encourage effort as something that has a payoff at the end. Make him have what he wants when he does something to deserve it.
Some demand from adults is also important (let’s not overdo it either). Over time, that external demand will turn into self-demand. Give him tasks that he can do and that don’t take him long. For example, study for 40 minutes every day, help set the table, pick up your plate, tidy your room … Ideally, start with easy tasks and increase the degree of difficulty as you grow and mature. Over time they will achieve more difficult goals and for themselves! That will raise their self-esteem a lot because they will feel useful, capable and self-confident.
On the other hand, teach him that failure cannot be an impediment to stop doing something , much less the fear of failure. To do this, adults have to set an example and not give up at the first few changes. Also, look for something that really motivates the child and use it as an opportunity to teach him everything. Because if there is no reason, it is impossible to fight for a goal. Motivation is what will make the effort more bearable. For that, get to know your child, listen to him, discover what he likes and take advantage of it.
12 STRATEGIES TO TEACH YOUR CHILDREN TO PUSH THEMSELVES
Then we leave you with 12 tips that will help your children get used to trying harder in life, both academically and personally.
1. Give him responsibilities appropriate to his age from a young age. It is important that everyone is responsible for their things.
2. Teach them to be more independent . Let them do things for themselves first even if they make mistakes. Allow time for them to try again and only help them when they have failed several times. For example, when dressing it is important that they do what they can alone, and not finish dressing them, only intervene in the event that they get stuck, but if the child already knows how to do it, it is only convenient that you leave him first.
3. Make their own decisions from a young age. That they learn to be wrong. Do not decide everything for him, it is only a way to overprotect him and make him more dependent on the parents, which will not benefit him at all in the future). What’s more, you will feed their fear of being wrong and of frustration.
4. Take advantage whenever you can to explain that behind an achievement there is an effort, so it is worth making an effort to achieve your goals.
5. In the same way, remind them often that many of the things we buy can be reused, not thrown away .
6. Get them used to the fact that whenever they commit to something they fulfill it so that they learn from a young age to take responsibility for their actions.
7. Encourage them to share their things and to be generous with the other children.
8. When they find themselves in a very frustrating situation for them that is difficult to change, teach them to take things with humor .
9. Be patient with them and do not give in to their whims right away , it is not good to anticipate rewards for them because they will get used to having them without making an effort beforehand. Better if we distribute them over time and attributing it to something good that he has done. If, for example, they are parties like Christmas, we can always say something like: “This year you have behaved very well, that’s why the Three Kings have brought you the console.”
10. Set goals that we can control every day, for example doing homework before lunch or not being late for class.
11. Motivate you to follow a collection or a hobby that requires consistency (drawing, reading , a collection of stickers …)
12. Set an example . It is the most important thing to teach children the importance of effort. How? Try not to leave half-finished tasks in front of him, do things quickly and in any way to finish earlier, continually postpone tasks, make excuses to get rid of activities …
Finally, wait for luck, for you to win the lottery, for “they ask the only question that I studied in the exam” … They are passive answers and do not imply effort. People get involved in tasks when there is a purpose, when we find it interesting, when we can participate in its planning and development, when we feel cognitively and emotionally involved, when we see ourselves as competent … Anyway, when we can make sense of it.