It just seems to be human nature to put off today what you can do tomorrow. Most people find themselves fighting procrastination at one time or another, while others seem to make an Olympic sport of it. There are many reasons we give for procrastinating, although more often than not, they are simply excuses. Truth is, at the core of procrastination is a lack of motivation and an instinctual desire to protect ourselves from pain.
Our children are no different…their natural instinct is to do those things that maximize pleasure and minimize pain (after all, what’s more painful than stopping their video game to start on their homework, or to study for a test?!). However, we as parents, can play a important role when it comes to teaching our children better habits (remember, learning to overcome procrastination will benefit your children in all facets of their lives, both now and in the future).
One of the most significant things we can do is to model the behavior we want to encourage (e.g. tackle a job you’ve “been meaning to do” and show them how good it feels to complete it). We can also set rules and routines that encourage good study habits. For example, make it a rule that they must do their homework or study prior to any screen time (let the screen time be their “reward” for doing the work that needs to be done).
Click here to check out what this article has to say about why kids procrastinate and what parents can do to help them make better choices…
Most of us would argue that we still manage to ‘function’, despite our propensity to procrastinate. However, if we were to be totally truthful, the majority would also agree that we would be more successful in all facets of life, if we found a way to overcome this personal demon. The same can be said of our children. Let’s give them an advantage by providing them with some techniques they can use to spur themselves into action and get the job done!
Kids don’t only procrastinate when it comes to schoolwork. If you find yourself struggling to get your children to tidy up, read this post about teaching kids to declutter.