How on earth do you motivate a child? If only we had a magic wand!
The reason why we all seem to find this difficult is because we think about motivation in a very binary way: 'carrot and stick', 'reward and punishment'. "Do this and I'll give you some money." "Do that and you've got a screen ban."
Sure, that works for simple stuff like tidying a bedroom (sometimes), but for bigger more important stuff like RESILIENCE, it doesn't work very well, if at all.
so what do we do instead?
The word motivation comes from the latin 'movere', meaning'to move',
Therein lies the clue as to why your child lacks motivation, they aren't moving towards anything.
In other words, they lack a purpose... they need a reason WHY.
To help them find that, you need to know where to look.
Your purpose lives in the intersection between your interests and passions, your skills and abilities, and from knowing who you are and what you are capable of- your strengths.
Real motivation comes from within, not from outside.
This then is the key to helping your child to develop their motivation and their resilience.
help your child to explore their interests so that they can find and develop their passion
help your child to understand themselves: who they are and what they are capable of
help your child to developed the skills and resources they need to be successful at what they do
motivation and resilience
Resilience itself is not an objective, it's not something that you can 'motivate' your child toward.
Instead resilience is a by-product of having a true purpose.
You only need to look at someone like Greta Thunberg to understand this power of having a true purpose.
That's not to say that RESILIENCE can't be taught, it can- as you will see in a moment.
It's just that without a purpose there is no MOTIVATION to BE RESILIENT.
step 1: help your child to find their passion
A number of rules here:
You have to kiss a few frogs to find a prince, you might have to help your kid try lots of different interests.
It should be their choice- not yours, you have a better chance of getting them to stick at it.
It should be fun for as long as possible- don't get too heavy too quickly.
They need lots of encouragement and support.
You need to help them not quit.
We wrote more about how to do this here, in our summary of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth
step 2: help your child to understand themselves
How do you help your child understand themselves, to know who they really are and what they are capable of?
Character Strengths are the positive parts of personality that influence how you think, feel and behave.
Scientists have identified 24 universal character strengths that we all have- see below.
Character strengths reflect the 'real' you—who you are at your core.
Understanding their unique blend of these strengths is the first step towards your child having the confidence to be their best self.
It's also a key component of motivation, without knowing their 'real' selves, how will your child get the best out of themselves?
step 3: help your child to develop resources
Whilst having a true purpose will help with motivation and resilience, it's not the only strength that your child needs to be RESILIENT.
We have identified 6 key character strengths that are essential to resilience: ZEST, HOPE, CREATIVITY, SELF-REGULATION, BRAVERY & PERSEVERANCE.
Life is full of ups and downs, developing these 6 strengths will give your child the skills and the confidence to be able to deal with whatever comes their way.
Knowing that you have the skills to cope helps massively with motivation.
In order to become the resilient and motivated person you know they can be, your child will need to learn:
Imagine how motivated your child would be if they developed these strengths?
how do you do all this?
We have developed character strengths based tool that helps kids understand who they are and teaches them the skills they need to develop the 6 key strengths of resilience: THE BEST ME THAT I CAN BE.
Part-manual, part-workbook and part-journal, it is designed to take your child on a journey of self-discovery and personal growth.
It's a blueprint for their success in school and for their life beyond the classroom.
And, its the life manual that we wish that we'd had when we were growing up.
the best Me contains
A digital pdf download for you to print at home, also includes a separate FREE strength building activity workbook.
full 30 day money back guarantee
preview: take a closer look at what's inside
Here's a preview of some of the 98 pages...
2 options for you
- 1WORKBOOKS ONLY: THE BEST ME workbook + the FREE strengths building workbook
- 2FULL SUPPORT: both workbooks + lifetime membership to a private Facebook community.
FULL SUPPORT means we'll be there to guide and support you and your child along this journey- whenever you need it.
You can ask us direct questions, we post daily hints and tips and you'll get a free strength/ life skill building activity each month to help your child develop even further.
(The normal cost for this is £60, but for today only you get to enjoy this benefit for as long as you want for just £7).
both options enjoy a full 30 day money back guarantee
the best you that you can be
THE BEST ME is a brilliant self-help guide and based on personal experience we totally recommend doing it alongside your kids- (just buy one and print out 2 copies at home).
what others say about our work
The main focus is to help you discover your own values and put your own plan into action, as opposed to telling you what to do.
LAURA CLARK// The Butterfly Mother
It is presented in a very straightforward and easy to read manner and I can already see that there is value in the takeaway.
ALICIA ANTONIO// The Bottle Poppin Mamma
I would highly recommend to any parent needing to get in the here and now of parenting… but also who wants to look to the future too.
TALYA STONE// Motherhood: The Real Deal