The road through adolescence may seem like a long journey while it is happening, but in reality it is just a small moment in our lives. It is also a critical time. Children develop interests, hobbies, and study skills, and personality traits that will last them a life time. Sometimes kids will pick up on some traits, and sometimes it will take time. To get them truly competent at any activity will require persistence.
Some of us had parents that focused on our persistence, and some of us did not have that benefit. Either way, we can all be there for our children and be persistent in developing some part of their future. Even if you only see them on the weekends it is your job as a parent to help them become persistent in their actions.
One misnomer is persistence means doing the same thing the exact same way every time. In fact, you should be doing the same thing in as many possibly ways as you can to keep them interested and engaged. Even simple things can have a lot of variation. Example: Twelve year-old daughter has fallen for the new craze, Pokémon GO, which she like playing with her friends. I am not particularly fond of the game, but her interests are of interest to me. I have seen a lot less useful games out there. At least Pokémon gets them exploring and exercising. My daughter plays and is okay at the game, but isn’t serious about it. I think it is good to get her exploring our city in a safe manner, so I encourage her to look online for more effective and better ways to play. I ask her everyday about her favorite creature, and what stats it has. I ask her briefly everyday how the progress is going on the hatching of 10k eggs, and what new things she found. Obviously I did my research too…
While this seems mundane it is important. She learned a lot of skills. She walked nearly 50k in a month. She learned to charge her phone each night instead of leave it lying around. She learned that the best things aren’t the easiest to find.(or hatch) We discussed statistics as it relates to the game, and most important she learned that she liked jogging. It also got me exercising more to keep up with her. So now we have healthy habit of walking and jogging every morning. Important note: They gain benefits in Pokémon for walking , and some chores require walking which gives them more reasons to do their chores. E.g. taking out garbage, walking to the store, mowing the lawn etc. Of course there are other challenges of helping her be mindful of the environment while playing, and staying self-disciplined in her school work.
This is just a small example for developing persistence in all facets of kids’ lives. These tools can be used to reinforce all positive actions, and help continue to grow your relationship with them. This is particularly important for sports and academic programs. I know I appreciate employees with high levels of persistence and perseverance, and I know it is a trait I will develop with all of my children.
Now to keep them from being so persistent about asking for a new Xbox, clothes, smart phones, and other expensive items…