How To Encourage Your Kids to Apply Themselves

Parents often grow frustrating trying to convince their youngsters that applying themselves to chores, schoolwork, and other necessary tasks is important. You don’t have to resort to threats or bribery, though. Try some of these tips:

• Focus on progress, not perfection. Kids will shy away from chores if they feel they can never do a good enough job. Set reasonable standards, but don’t obsess about their getting everything perfect. Reward progress, not just results.

• Give them a choice. If kids feel they have a choice about what to do, or how to do it, they’ll try harder. Provide them with options, and be honest about what how they can do a good job.

• Give them lots of praise. Make them feel good about what they’re doing. They’ll want to do more if they feel good about their work. Point out their strengths, and make sure you’re sincere, honest, and specific in your praise.

• Talk about your own work. When you share your own achievements in your job or hobbies, kids may be motivated to work harder so they have their own successes to share with you.

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