The challenge for so many students is in staying focused on finishing out the school year on a positive note, while balancing all of the outdoor activities, the parties and social events going on. The challenge for parents and teachers is to keep their kids focused without robing yourself of your own sanity. Balance is the key to nature and to all of life and when we have balance in our own lives, we flourish.
So how do we get our kids to maintain this healthy balance while we know they would much rather spend their time frolicking in the sun? In this article, I share 3 easy tips that will help students stay focused on their academic responsibilities while at the same time being able to experience the gift of Mother Nature.
1) Setting Intentions Before Beginning Work
Energy follows focus so the act of setting an intention PRIOR to taking action allows for a much more intentional session of studying. Often when kids sit down to study, they waste so much time because they are not being present in what they are doing. If they are excited about going outside and playing soccer or sitting on the beach, they are not going to be very intentional about their studies. So rather than sitting in their room for 2 hours of unfocused studying, have them set their intention first so they make the most use of their energy in much less time. An effective intention might be: “I am going to complete each of these study questions for English class, absorb the answers easily and feel great about what I’ve reviewed. I intend to do this within an hour”. You can also have them write out their intention as that really focuses the energy even more.
Many times kids need to go outside after school and balance their energies before hitting the books once again. After all, they’ve been cooped up in a building most of the day focusing on school work. Let them decide what feels best to them, as long as they set aside time later in the evening without distractions of TV, phone or computers.
2) Study in the Shade
Another way to encourage them to sit outside and study is to sit outside with them and read a book. The energy of a relaxed focus is very soothing and enjoyable. Set a specific block of time for this and then afterwards go for a walk in the park and some ice cream (your treat )!
3) Prioritize and Make a Schedule
Help your teen prioritize their workload so they don’t get overwhelmed. If they have 7 finals coming up they may be carrying the burden of having to study for all of these exams within 2 weeks. Not every single class is going to require the same amount of focused energy. Help him decide which classes are most important for him to place his attention. If he would like, look at the exam schedules together and go over the different options available. Perhaps he has a C average in Social Studies as this is not his favorite subject. Rather than putting the pressure on to study harder in this class to bring up his average, encourage him to spend more time in those areas in which he excels and really enjoys. The reason behind this is because if and when he applies to colleges, he is most likely going to lean toward a major that utilizes the skills in which he is gifted and enjoys. Instead of thinking he has to be ‘well rounded’ and bring up his average in all classes, leverage his time by putting more of his energy in the areas where his future is leading him.
When making a set schedule for studying, we are more likely to follow it. Help your son know when he is more focused. It may be after dinner or right after school to get it out of the way. We are all different and it is best that we understand our own style of learning. And be sure to be flexible with this, if it is absolutely gorgeous out, be sure to allow outside time. And when it rains, take advantage of the weather to fit in some time for other assignments that are coming up.
If your kids learn to be intentional and set up the atmosphere before studying while having a flexible schedule planned out, they will be much more relaxed and focused on a positive outcome and will be way more balanced in their studying approach. And remember to not take it too seriously and have fun. That’s when we learn the best!
P.S.~If you are looking for a strategic plan to help your son or daughter achieve better results in school, I invite you to connect with me to see how a Super Confidence Discovery Session can get you and your teen laser focused on the results they are looking to achieve. All you have to do is go here and fill out this form