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How to Set Goals With Kids

2023 is already a few months in. Can you believe it?! Time has flown by. As you gear up for another year, you’re probably thinking about the things you want to accomplish or achieve and your kids might have things on their minds, too! So, why not make goal-setting a family activity? Whether your kids are littles or in their teens, setting goals can help the whole family be successful in the new year. Here are some simple ways to include your kids as you think through your 2023 goals:

  1. Make sure your goals are SMART.

  2. Obviously we want our goals to be smart. But this is actually an acronym for SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ATTAINABLE, RELEVANT, and TIME-BOUND. Creating “SMART” goals helps you look at the things you want to achieve and gives you an actionable plan to get after them. This can work for your kids, too!

  3. Write down the steps you need to take.

  4. Goals don’t complete themselves! So, make sure you all write down the steps you need to take to make these goals happen. For example: if one of your goals is to go to the park 3x/week with your kids, what needs to happen to make that goal a reality? Maybe the steps are:

1. Figure out at the beginning of each week what days you’ll go to the park

2. Get the kids ready for the park

3. Pack snacks and a blanket

4. Drive to the park

The steps don’t have to be extravagant to make sense! This is just a different way to visualize the steps you have to take, and helps break down that goal into bite-sized pieces.

3. Schedule frequent check-ins.

  1. Maybe this happens once a week or once a month—however it works for your schedule, make sure to talk to your family about when and where you want to check in on each other’s goals. This helps set expectations for the WHOLE family, and motivates everyone to make progress so you all have something to report at that week/month’s check-in.

To make it easy for you and your kiddos to get on the same page, our friends at a Scholar Within have created a SMART goal-setting template for the young ones! You can find it here, and it’s available for print or download. We want to hear about your goals! Post on your Instagram and tag @thegardencartoon and use the hashtag #GardenGoals so we can check in with you, too! Happy New Year, Garden family!

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