One World.
Every Child.

One World.
Every Child.

Putting in the Effort Together

Putting in the Effort Together

Putting in the Effort Together

by Michal Berg

Perhaps one of the hardest things we experience as a parent is watching our children not put in the effort needed to succeed or simply not being the best they can be. It can be school-related, well-being habits, or an attitude of giving up before even trying.

The longer children go through life without learning to make an effort or successfully overcome challenges, the less secure and capable they will feel.

The longer children go through life without learning to make an effort or successfully overcome challenges, the less secure and capable they will feel.

Unfortunately and unconsciously, we, parents, are often the reason our children don’t get the opportunity to face their challenges. We do that because we love them so much, and it is hard for us to see them in pain or fail or not fit in, so we want to make it all okay for them, but by doing so, we hinder their ability to overcome adversity.

There is no better gift we can give our children than the ability to overcome challenges.

There is no better gift we can give our children than the ability to overcome challenges.

So how can we help our children understand the power of making an effort and stop enabling them?

One of the Opponent’s biggest tricks is to give us constant excuses for not being successful. Our reasons for not doing what it takes to succeed are just the Opponent’s tricks to challenge us so we can overcome our self-doubt and laziness. We can target these challenges by taking one small step at a time through a process of identifying what is hard for me, what I am afraid of, and what I need to move forward, and then setting realistic goals to move us past these obstacles.

How can we find little ways to achieve more today than we did yesterday?

How can we find little ways to achieve more today than we did yesterday?

You can try this exercise below with your child to help you feel more comfortable letting go and empowering your child to face their challenges. It would also be best if you do this exercise along with your child, mapping your own challenge; it will be a great role model opportunity.

You can try this exercise below with your child to help you feel more comfortable letting go and empowering your child to face their challenges. It would also be best if you do this exercise along with your child, mapping your own challenge; it will be a great role model opportunity.

Start by creating a three-column table with the headings as below:

It Is Hard for Me To… My Opponent is Telling Me To…
The steps I will take…
The Step Take to Overcome…

 

Set aside some quiet time to complete the charts, work together to identify what’s difficult for each of you and what’s preventing you from doing what you need to do, and then choose practical small steps to which you can hold each other accountable.

The key to the exercise’s success is your willingness to go through the identifying process with your children openly. Your children cannot feel that this is only their problem. Be honest and open, and show them that you are going through challenges every day, just like they are, and how it is possible to face and overcome them.

Keep the charts available for daily reference, reinforcement, and tweaking. Perhaps put it in your child’s room or a more public space, like the kitchen, to remind you to discuss it often. You can add a reward system for achieving the goals along the way.

Here are some additional tips to encourage effort in your children:

  • Acknowledge and say something positive whenever your notice your child makes an effort. Too often, we only comment when they don’t.
  • Praise virtues that take an effort like: not teasing back, pausing before responding, giving a hand without being asked, being grateful, and being thoughtful.
  • Share often with your child an age-appropriate challenge you’ve had, what effort you needed to put forward, and how it benefited you.
  • Have patience and give love. Your children are a work in progress, and your love helps them persevere.
Start by creating
a three-column table
with the headings as below:
My Opponent is Telling Me To…
The steps I will take…
The Step Take to Overcome…
It Is Hard for Me To…


Set aside some quiet time to complete the charts, work together to identify what’s difficult for each of you and what’s preventing you from doing what you need to do, and then choose practical small steps to which you can hold each other accountable.

The key to the exercise’s success is your willingness to go through the identifying process with your children openly. Your children cannot feel that this is only their problem. Be honest and open, and show them that you are going through challenges every day, just like they are, and how it is possible to face and overcome them.

Keep the charts available for daily reference, reinforcement, and tweaking. Perhaps put it in your child’s room or a more public space, like the kitchen, to remind you to discuss it often. You can add a reward system for achieving the goals along the way.

Here are some additional tips to encourage effort in your children:

  • Acknowledge and say something positive whenever your notice your child makes an effort. Too often, we only comment when they don’t.
  • Praise virtues that take an effort like: not teasing back, pausing before responding, giving a hand without being asked, being grateful, and being thoughtful.
  • Share often with your child an age-appropriate challenge you’ve had, what effort you needed to put forward, and how it benefited you.
  • Have patience and give love. Your children are a work in progress, and your love helps them persevere.

Recent Posts

ALL POSTS
READ MORE POSTS

Newsletter

Join our mailing list to get articles, news and practical tips on how to develop spiritual and emotional intelligence for the whole family.

Newsletter

Join our mailing list to get articles, news and practical tips on how to develop spiritual and emotional intelligence for the whole family.

Go to Top