Helping Your Kids Achieve Goals in the New Year

January. I love this month. Not because it is typically a blustery, sideways snow blowing month in Michigan. I love it because it is a time we can wipe away the past year (be it good or bad) and visually focus and “begin” new. January to me is refreshing and no matter what happened the previous year, we can make our own future. My husband and I are big dreamers. We do a lot of goal setting. For him and I, it’s ingrained in to us now. We dream, set a goal to get that dream, figure out a plan and then work the plan to achieve the dream/goal. Clear as mud, right? 🙂 Well, that is what my children think when we talk to them about dreaming and setting goals. For them, the closest thing they can relate to a goal is going to get ice cream after a great grade on some homework. Whatever works is our motto! Let’s start from the beginning though.

While we don’t have “goal planning sessions” with our children, we do talk about setting a need/want out in front of them and then working hard to achieve and get the need/want. Our 3 year old hasn’t quite grasped this concept fully, she is only able to grasp the visual reminders. However, our 6 year old is getting the hang of things. Here are a few things that we have learned along the way to help our children understand goal setting and working hard to achieve something:

  • For young kids, making a goal something visual that they can see is a must. They don’t understand waiting and working hard for something like us adults do. They need the visual reminder. We work a lot in pictures around our house. We cut things out of catalogs and print things from the computer. We then place the goals and dreams in a prominent place for the girls to remember what they are working hard for.
  • Thomas Nelson My Splendidly Silver Sticker and Doodling Purse BookMake sure you set the goals in short term increments to attain the long term goal. For example, the goal for our girls for the month of January is for their rooms to be clean. Each week we give the girls three tasks to complete, once they are complete, they get a sticker…a reward for working hard. At the end of the month when they have collected all their stickers, they get the big reward. Family Fun Night! 🙂 The book pictured, My Splendidly Silver Sticker and Doodling Purse, is a fun alternative that can be used!
  • Don’t make the goals so big, and expect so much out of the little ones that they fail right away. This isn’t setting them up for good goal setting habits for the long term. For young ones, we want them to dream. We want them to think the world is their oyster. Help them along their journey. Always, continually build up your little ones 🙂
  • Pray, ask God for it and believe that God will and wants to fulfill every one of your needs and desires. That’s an easy one for kids to grasp 🙂 And I think it’s a fun one to teach as well. God is GOOD!
  • Keep what is important to YOUR family, first and foremost. For us that is our Lord. We want our girls to know that He is there no matter what we are going through. If you fail, He is there. If you win, He is there. He is walking beside them at all stages of their journey. When they are little it is hard to explain this, so we have found that books really do the trick. There are amazing authors out there who can relay messages to little kids better than us parents can. Admit to it and grab a book. We do 🙂 Some great Tommy Nelson books that I recommend are:Thomas Nelson Smack Dab in the Middle of God's LoveThomas Nelson God Listens When I Pray

Goal planning is a very important thing to do, not only for yourself, but for your family. Aren’t you much happier when you are working towards achieving something? What are some things that you do with your family when it comes to goal planning?

Shannon is much more than a 7-letter name. Her life consists of three little ladies and an amazing husband of 11+ years. Outside of her blogging life at and, you can find her hovering over anything chocolate and peanut butter then running it off whenever she has a chance. Running fills her cup so she can take care of the family God has blessed her with. She is a wordy, type-A, OCD Momma who loves fashion, running, cute babies and more importantly her family and her God. {Life motto :: Phil 4:13}