Cultivating hope does not have to be a complicated process for us because, fortunately, there are research-based strategies for us to help our kids increase their skills of hope. One strategy is to help our kids identify and prioritize their top macro and micro goals. The point of this exercise is to understand what our kids want, not what we or their schools want or they will begin to lose motivation in achieving their goals.
To do the exercise, begin by having them list”big picture” items that are important for them ( such as school, friends, sports, etc). Afterwards, have them reflect on the list and ask them how satisfied they are with each item. Next, create clear and attainable goals that will help them achieve satisfaction for each of their big picture item. For example, “I want to join the baseball team” may be one of the goals they have if “sports” is a big picture item on their list. Lastly, have them rank their goals in order of importance. This step will help them identify the top goals that may need more of their focus and energy in order to make the most impact on their well-being.
For more ideas on how to help kids build skills of hope, visit https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_to_help_students_develop_hope.