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It is important to start setting goals even at a young age.  What children learn when they are young will dictate the way they handle things later in life.  Every parent can help their children set and meet goals.  Children need something to work toward, and a sense of accomplishment when a goal is met.

Help Your Child Keep Goals Realistic

While dreaming big is wonderful and should not be stifled, it’s important for parents to teach children the difference between big dreams and reasonable goals.  For example, if your child says he’s going to own his own business, that’s great, but it’s probably not going to happen by the time he’s thirteen.  He needs to know that he has to work his way up.  He may start by having a paper route and saving his earnings.  Later, he may use those earnings to buy savings bonds.  A more realistic aim, one that works toward the ultimate goal, might be to decide he’s going to have $200.00 saved by his thirteenth birthday.

Break Down Goals into Manageable Steps

Perhaps your child’s goal is to have a book published by the time she is eighteen.  She can start by setting smaller goals, such as writing at least three articles or stories each week, or submitting at least one item for publication each week.  Your job as a parent is to help her understand that rejection is part of the process and it should not be taken personally.  Encourage her to continue submitting.  She may have several publishing credits to her name before she turns eighteen, which will give her a much better chance of meeting her ultimate goal.