(As shared on Decoding Your Child Facebook post on 31 May 2019)
If there’s something I hear most from parents, it is their frustration at their unmotivated teens, esp their boys.
It is very interesting to note that motivation is not something we inculcate in our children. Like creativity, motivation is actually something we and our children are born with! (Just watch how fast a baby crawls towards his favourite toy!)
Unfortunately, along the way as our children grow up, we parents start to put up a lot of boundaries. We start dictating what they need to do. We start telling them a lot “no”s. And research shows that boys tend to get more “no”s than their female counterparts.
The more persistent the child, the more vehement our “NO!” gets and the more demoralised the child becomes. For every “no” a child receives, a part of him is stifled. Of course I’m not saying we cannot say no to our children. But if our kids receive mostly “no”s for every request they make, they start to realise they have no say in their lives and they STOP to think about things they want to do or brew up interesting ideas they have or activities they want to pursue. THAT is how we kill BOTH their creativity and their motivation. Why motivation? Because they are no longer doing things they enjoy or want to. Because they are doing things that we tell them to do ALL THE TIME. And we know how extremely difficult it is to stay motivated doing something that someone else tells us to do.
Hence if we want our children, esp our boys, to be motivated, give them room to pursue their interest. Give them back control over their lives. The more control they have over their lives, the more motivated they would become.
Slowly but surely, we will see the spark of motivation and creativity rekindled in their eyes.
The school holidays are upon us. Do give as much time as possible for your children to chill, play and do what they like. It’s a time for them to recharge so they can fill THEIR cups and have room to find motivation within themselves.
Happy Vacation and Happy Parenting!!