7 Ways to Help Your Child Overcome a Lack of Motivation
Motivation, intrinsic motivation, in particular, can dramatically improve productivity, performance, and grades. However, what can you do if you’ve noticed that your child has no motivation to study? Can you help them overcome the lack of motivation?
While your child will have to be the one doing the hard work, as a parent, you can coach them through it. They will not only help your child improve their grades, but also provide the tools and skills needed to successfully study in college and perform work.
7 Ways to Help Your Child When They Have Lack of Motivation
1. Get to the Root of the Problem
In order to effectively help your child with a lack of motivation, you need to know what’s causing it. Therefore, communicating to identify the cause should be the first action step.
Make sure to be mindful of your tone when you talk to your child. Avoid demonstrating negative emotions such as blame or disappointment as those can cause your child to become defensive. Instead, in a friendly manner, mention that you’ve noticed that something is going on, ask how they are feeling and if anything is bothering them.
Don’t pry, that too can result in resistance. Ensure that you are available and open to talk whenever they are ready.
2. Help Them Define the Why
Often, the lack of motivation comes with the inability to see the practical use of something. Therefore, you may need to help your child identify why a specific subject or topic is needed. Sometimes, it may be simply passing a specific test.
Other times, you may be able to show how the subject matter can be practically applied in real-life situations. For instance, teach how math can help your child to save for something they’d like to buy. Or how learning chemistry can help them perform safe experiments at home.
These do not need to be fancy. Cooking can also be a great activity to demonstrate different chemical properties and reactions and different products.
3. Make Sure Your Child Gets Enough Rest and Eats Healthy Food
A lack of sleep and an unhealthy diet can make your child feel tired and sluggish As a result, they may not be able to perform at their full capacity, especially if they already lack the motivation to study.
Ensure that your child doesn’t skip breakfast and eats a balanced diet with plenty of healthy fats and proteins as well as fresh fruits and vegetables. Cut our soda and commercially produced juices. While often labeled as healthy, they contain high amounts of sugar. They cause spikes and, consequently, drops in energy. Those can negatively impact their wellbeing as well as the ability to stay alert and motivated.
4. Get Your Child to Move
While younger usually move quite a lot, teenagers may be less physically active. Encourage your child to go for a walk, jog, dance, or do some other light form of exercise that they enjoy. With younger children, you can suggest them to take a break and play for a few minutes. Make sure that they move and play with actual toys rather than spend time in front of a tablet or a computer
Exercise, especially if it’s outside, has a multitude of positive effects of exercise. It helps produce endorphins and bring more oxygen to the brain. Approximately 30 minutes outdoors can also help produce Vitamin D and boost mood and energy levels.
Research also shows that exercise also improves neuroplasticity. This is vital for learning and retaining new information.
5. Provide Extra Help or Challenge
Children frequently lose motivation if the subject matter is too easy or too complicated. In the case of the former, they may eventually fall behind. The latter, however, will prevent them from successfully continuing the learning process. In either case, aim to address it quickly to provide your child with the support that they need.
If you are unable or too busy to do this yourself, you can hire a professional tutor or enroll your child in extracurricular classes. They can help with a more personalized approach that addresses the specific need of your child.
6. Provide Hands-on Learning Opportunities
In public school, subjects are often taught in a direct manner. This is a traditional teaching method when a teacher is guiding students through the material and the students remain passive. While this is the easiest method for the teacher and allows teaching large classes, students are more likely to become disinterested and develop a lack of motivation.
Hands-on-activities can help prevent students from losing interest and motivation.
For science subjects, you can opt for STEM toys that teach and develop different skills. You can also enroll your child into a STEM learning center. This will not only help them stay motivated but will also help work on skills which can be vital in their future career.
7. Help Establish Good Study Habits
Even adults struggle with straying productive and motivated. However, good study habits can help children not only overcome the lack of motivation and improve their performance in school but also succeed later in life.
First of all, teach your child how to properly plan their time. This can include allocating specific periods of time for each subject as well as rest. While often overlooked, breaks are crucial to remaining productive. They also break down unpleasant or challenging tasks into more manageable pieces.
For younger children, encourage alternating 15 minutes of studying with 5-minute breaks. For teenagers, the study periods can be longer – up to 25 minutes. Encourage getting up and moving during break times.
Another successful approach to curbing the lack of motivation is keeping study area clean and organized. Suggest personalizing and decorating the study area with objects that can motivate your child.
You can even make this into a bonding activity. Look up study area décor ideas on Pinterest, let your child choose what they like, and go shopping together. This can reinsure your child that you’re on their side and doing what you can to help them get over the lack of motivation without blaming or criticizing them.
Have you tried any of these methods? Feel free to connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and tell us about it! If you live in East Brunswick, New Jersey, and are looking for professional help or STEM classes to help your child deal with a lack of motivation, get in touch with us.