New Year New Goals!
Welcome to IWG's new monthly newsletter in our continued service to our clients we would like to provide you with more tips and advice to navigate your day to day lives.
Welcome and enjoy.

Why should we have Goals instead of Resolutions?
1. Set Goals That Motivate You
When you set goals for yourself, it is important that they motivate you: this means making sure that they are important to you, and that there is value in achieving them.

To make sure your goal is motivating, write down why it's valuable and important to you. Ask yourself, "If I were to share my goal with others, what would I tell them to convince them it was a worthwhile goal?" You can use this motivating value statement to help you if you start to doubt yourself or lose confidence in your ability to actually make the goal happen.
2. Set SMART Goals
Goals should be:
  • Specific.
  • Measurable.
  • Attainable.
  • Relevant.
  • Time Bound

3. Set Goals in Writing
The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real and tangible. You have no excuse for forgetting about it.

4. Make an Action Plan
This step is often missed in the process of goal setting. You get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan all of the steps that are needed along the way.

5. Stick With It!
Remember, goal setting is an ongoing activity not just a means to an end. 
Early Childhood : How to Help Your Child Set and Reach Goals
Teaching your child to overcome obstacles and accomplish their goals will help them learn perseverance and encourage healthy decision-making. 

Since young children cannot fully understand the abstract concept of goals, it is the responsibility of the parent to help your child select appropriate goals. 

By knowing your child, you can create an environment that enhances their strengths and supports their areas for improvement. Before starting the conversation with your children, have a few goals in mind to help guide them toward a productive, achievable, age-appropriate goal. 

Focus on cooperation rather than competition. It’s not about who does it ‘better’ or ‘faster.’

How can your children help each other toward their goals? And how can they help you in yours?
Remember to lead by example: If you do not keep your commitments, neither will your child. 

Since young children cannot understand ‘abstract’ thought yet, they must see their goals in a tangible way. Create a 2018 goal-board that you design together, or have a visual reminder of goals somewhere in the home. Have your child add their handprint or signature to show their commitment. 

Focus on giving positive encouragement toward goals, rather than punishment for lack of success. How your child ‘feels’ about goals and their ability to be successful early on in life will set the tone for their self-esteem as an adult. 

Check in on a regular basis with your child to keep them mindful of their 
commitments. Try reviewing goals once a week with each child 
individually, and once a month together as a family.
The Early Childhood team now offers a closed Facebook group for parents and caregivers. Where there will be tips and discussion.... Join now!
V.E.T.T.S. & Community: Teaching our youth to dream has never been more important. Goals are just dreams with a plan and our youth believe that they do not have the luxury to dream. Here is a great article by educator and author Sonia Cunningham Leverage, on teaching children to dream.
Teaching Our Children to Dream
Teaching our children to dream is important. Teaching our children to dream early in life is even more important. Our children need to know our dreams, and they need to see us take steps to achieve those dreams. Then there can be a joint celebration. Once we talk to our children and explain what some good, healthy dreams might be, like making all A's, making the cheerleading squad or learning to ride a bicycle without training wheels, we should help them identify the steps they will need to take in order to obtain those goals. Our role is to help guide them on their journey. With every successful accomplishment, self-esteem and confidence are added benefits. 
Sometimes, dreams and goals are used synonymously. Keep in mind that dreams are more about the journey. Be sure to teach children the difference between night dreams, daydreams and real dreams. They must understand that any dream worth having will take patience, faith and determination. 

My children’s book, BJ’s Big Dream, is about a young boy with a big dream. His dream actually takes years, but he is determined not to give up. Though he meets challenges along the way, he stays the course. He actually has dreams within his dream, and in these dreams he sees himself as he wants to be. This helps him to stay focused and concentrate on his dream even more. 
So, ask your child or your students what are their dreams? What are their plans to accomplish those dreams? Who will help them get there? Are there obstacles they might face? How will they handle these? Once they reach that dream, what will they dream next? It’s important to keep these conversations going to make sure that children aren’t selling themselves short and that they are DREAMING BIG!!!
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