Helping children learn to take the initiative

“Thinking is easy, acting is difficult” is a quote from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.  Initiative is when a thought is connected to action.  It is when you think of something and then actually do something.  So many people have ideas, a lesser number of individuals act on those ideas.  When to start practicing initiative is when we are young.


How can young people show initiative?  Here are a few examples:

  • brushing your teeth keeps your teeth healthy
  • exercising keeps your body strong
  • eating healthy keeps you healthy
  • studying can improve your mind


As a parent we can use the word “initiative” so that the child understands what they are doing and can then apply it later to other goals they may have.  When the student gets older and has a report due in two weeks, they will understand that ‘initiative’ will get them started on the report early, instead of waiting until the night before.


Initiative can be shown in any goal that we might set for ourselves.  Our goals though, need to be S.M.A.R.T.,  so that when we do show initiative, we stay motivated to complete our goal.  When setting goals for ourselves or our family we will be sure that they are: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time Bound.
Young or old, begin with yourself by taking action in your personal life.  Once you have initiated some good habits there – you are ready to initiate actions to help others.

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