Each child comes into the world as a blank slate. They have gifts, talents, and interests, and as adults, we have the joy of helping them discover what those are. As they get older and find out what they’re passionate about, they will start dreaming about what they might want to do in life. Maybe they dream about being a professional basketball player or they want to be a lawyer, doctor, or teacher. As they come up with a vision for their lives, what’s the best way to encourage them to achieve success and reach their dreams? Here are some best practices to keep in mind.
Explore and learn.
Encourage your children to try new things. Maybe that means signing them up for a soccer team for one season, putting them in a dance class, or enrolling in a theater camp. Ask them what they’re interested in learning about and then let them try it. Not every activity will stick – so be open and willing to give them a chance to try various things. Encourage learning, exploration, and research.
Show interest in what they’re learning about.
Let them share what they are interested in or what they’re learning. Show interest in what they’re saying and be genuine about that. If there is a way to engage with them in a deeper way, do that as well. For example, if they love soccer, take them out to kick the ball with them on the weekends or after school. If they are practicing piano, sit down and listen for a while.
At some point or another in life, we have visions for our lives that simply don’t end up the way we pictured. That will happen for your children, too. So, when something doesn’t work out, they fail at something, or they simply determine that their previous plan or vision isn’t going to be a success, help them accept that it’s okay. Not having things go as planned doesn’t mean that they are a failure. It just means it’s time to pivot and set out on a new vision.
Help your kids keep an open mind.
Sometimes, even the wildest and biggest dreams come true. A vision that seems out of reach or silly can become a reality with enough encouragement and determination. Tell your kids that keeping an open mind is the best way to approach things in life, and model that for them.
As parents, nannies, or caregivers, it’s natural to have hopes and dreams for your children. And while you can instill a vision within them from a young age, it’s even more rewarding to see them work toward their own dreams and ambitions. They are the next generation of world-changers, and it’s magical to be a part of making that happen.