U.S. author Henry David Thoreau said, “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams; live the life you have imagined.” When a child is young, he is full of dreams and aspirations. He wants to be a firefighter, doctor, musician or president of the United States. As a child gets older, however, he might begin to see what she feels is the reality of his life and his vision for the future may narrow. Helping a child to pursue her dreams is as simple as helping her see a future that is limitless, with potential opportunities everywhere.
Take your child to a variety of places in order to expose him to fresh experiences that will expand her mind. You might take a field trip to view an affluent neighborhood, a poor neighborhood, giant office buildings, hospitals and fire stations. A child can also choose from many online field trip and web quests to expand his thinking. Also, take the time to play imaginative games with your child that will open his mind to resourceful thinking.
Generate a Vision
It is common for organizations to have a vision statement that encapsulates the organization's purpose, so why not have your child apply the same idea to his life? The first step is to have him think about the what wants to do with his life, then write them down to make them more concrete, then outline measures that will set him on the path toward achieving his dream.
Encourage the Impossible
A parent who wants to protect her child might sometimes do this is to their detriment, because if a child is not exposed to new experiences, it can limit her growth. Encourage your child to take risks when it comes to pursuing dreams. Let her know that achieving her goal is possible, no matter how implausible it seems.
Achieving a dream “takes strength, perseverance and education,” according to an article on the Teen Ink website. Education opens doors to a child not only through creating more opportunities, but by teaching him how to think more creatively. Imaginative thinking will help your child envision himself in a variety of roles and settings, and set him on a path toward realizing his dreams.
Learn from Failure
According to an article in the University of Wisconsin, Parenthood in America Journal, “Learning to cope with failure is the essence of learning to take risks.” Whether it is playing sports or making a speech, safe risk-taking behaviors can promote confidence and self-esteem and move your child one step closer to realizing her ideas. Teaching your child that it is OK to fail will improve the chances that she will become more resilient and better able to manage obstacles.
- Brainy Quote: Your Dream Quotes
- Mind Tools: Mission Statements and Vision Statements: Unleashing Purpose
- University of Wisconsin: Parenthood in America: Growing Together: The Key to Creative Parenting
- Intercultural Development Research Association
- Teen Ink: How Will Education Make Your Dreams Come True?
- Visage/Stockbyte/Getty Images