Today, there is pressure for parents to have kids who excel at everything. No one wants to think that their children are average. In turn, parents try to enroll their kids in activities that will make them the “best” among their peers. We sign our children up to various activities in the hope that they will find one wherein they can excel. And then we get our hearts broken when our kids decide that they want to do something else—like be better in academics.
You can’t expect your child to instantly be good at playing the even though they are enrolled in violin lessons in Boulder. It will take time for your child to discover what they want to spend their time on. It takes time before they can develop their passions.
Your presence in your child’s life is crucial in their development. You should spend time doing homework with them. You should ask them about school—what they have learned and what they are interested in. By showing your kid that you’re interested in their academic life, you’re indirectly telling them that school can be exciting. But be careful with being on top of your child’s daily activities all the time. They may develop resistance against the school because of the pressure they get from you.
Strike a balance between motivating your kid to do well in school and letting them enjoy their activities outside school. You should also share the details of your day. This will stop the dialogue from feeling like an interrogation of what they have done and how well they have done at school.
You don’t encourage passions and interests by enrolling them in a myriad of different activities. You do that by doing activities as a family. You don’t always have to spend thousands of dollars on a football summer camp or a music lesson. You can expose them to different experiences through family activities.
You shouldn’t merely focus on after-school programs. When children get exposed to people with different talents, they might decide that they want to be like them. That gives you an idea of what activities they should pursue.
Probably the best thing you can do for your child is to support their interests and passions. Some children develop their interests as young as five. Some of them discover their passions when they are 17 years old. There’s nothing wrong with this. Your child can discover what skills they want to hone at different stages in their life. People develop until they are in their early 20s.
Your child needs support in all stages of their lives. You cannot compare them to how other kids are developing because children develop at their own pace. Not pressuring them to excel in activities they may not be interested in is the best gift you can give them.
Don’t let your kid push themselves to the brink of anxiety and depression. Allow them to make mistakes and learn from their failures. Do not reward them only when they win a competition; reward them for their hard work, too. Reward them for behaving excellently even when the competition gets tough.
You can help your child become better individuals in the future by guiding them in finding their passions and interests. Each kid is unique in their own way. There is no reason for you to live up to the expectations of others. Let your child enjoy their childhood and support whatever interests they’ll fall in love with.