Children of today’s age are smart, intelligent, and quick solution givers. Parents rely on them blindly as they believe children are better versed with sources of information and are absolute tech-savvy.
In days where parents are trying to update themselves, here’s something you can teach your kids which will benefit them in a long term!
The Marshmallow Theory:
Back in 1972, Walter Mischel, a professor at Stanford University made an experiment on children known as the famous ‘Marshmallow experiment’. Wherein, a child was asked to have a marshmallow in front of him but not eat it. Condition put was: if he controls his urge to taste the delicate and delicious marshmallow for 15 long minutes, he would be rewarded with another one. That way, he ends up having two marshmallows!
This experiment tests a child’s patience and an urge for instant gratification. Further study shows how children who resisted their desire happened to become successful and score better in competitive exams.
Should our children also give one similar test?
You wouldn’t have to! Here’s how you can make an effort in order to build similar qualities that this test would teach.
Develop Kids’ Growth Mindset
As kids, no one knew the correct way of doing things or which lesson to pick in order to succeed at a given task.
Parents can embed a thought which will stay with children for life. Tell them how their brains are ‘grow-able’. If the brain is watered and nurtured well, it will eventually grow. That if correct lessons are picked, good analysis is done and enough hard work is put, the brain will expand for their betterment!
This is called having a growth mindset. It requires patience, calm nature in moving forward, and consistency in learning. Basically to overcome the want of instant gratification.
Talk About Being Gritty
A simple loophole in understanding a concept ends up for children to do a quick search on phones and get the answer in a few milliseconds. What this process misses on is reading articles and books, going through theories, and building their own opinion.
Propose a discussion for children without the use of any electronic devices. Make it fun by validating their points and thereby motivating them to have more such discussions.
This way, they would be involved in sharing and building knowledge than getting answers instantly. Delayed gratification will reward your child with grit. In the long run, this is going to help them over any other internet wisdom.
Importance of Deliberate Practice
Where did you last hear the word upskill? Maybe, in an advertisement for another online course!
The point being, online courses have become synonymous with education and upskilling. A personal study is a concept that no longer exists.
Hence, make children learn the importance of 5-senses study or experiential learning. Let them play open in the ground and practice their knowledge on actual platforms.
When your child will observe their actions, calculate risks by themselves, and keep re-directing their execution; they will learn in the truest form.
Don’t Appreciate Them Often
One of the reasons why children fall prey to instant gratification is getting quick positive results.
This attitude could be changed if parents make children realize that appreciation comes when one shows persistence and hard work.
Hence, instead of giving out compliments to them easily, try appreciating and pointing out their efforts. They will slowly understand where the hard part lies and what outcome they will receive when they work well at it.
The Power of Giving Over Receiving
Failures are now looked at differently. No one wants to fail in today’s date. The smallest unsuccessful attempt leads to mental stress and depression for children. This is also because of the increasing competition and cut-throat pressure to perform.
Parents through personal experiences and their day-to-day activities should show the importance of keep doing and moving forward. Self-expectations spoil not just the end result but also restrict one’s natural flow.
Hence, the number of your child’s effort might not always equal to the amount of success they will receive. Parents should have an open conversation about their children’s performances and instead of scolding them on failures, they should give them moral support to keep trying.
This also helps in developing children’s patience and endurance level towards a task/skill.
Follow a Step By Step Process
Have you noticed how Google ends up claiming your normal symptoms as signs to some serious disease? Today’s children show similar trait by jumping to end results and skipping in-between stages.
Parents can make children learn this by giving a reward after the completion of an allotted task.
This task can be judged by parents and accordingly gift pocket money, games, and toys.
Putting small responsibilities on them and observing their way of performance will help parents know their kids’ attitudes better.
Thomas Alva Edison after inventing the incandescent bulb said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work!”
It is important for every child who wants to stand out and innovate the world that it is necessary for them to avoid instant gratification and go through an extensive process. It is agreeably opposite to what the world is heading towards today but that’s what makes your child unique apart from the rest.
Having discussions and by putting honest efforts, parents can make this difference and get their children future-ready.