Going to college is exciting for every student, but that excitement can be short lived. As soon as they fall into a routine of going to class during the day and studying at night, it’s easy to lose motivation. That’s especially the case if they’re set back by a bad grade on a paper or a test.
What is a parent or family member to do? Is there anything that can be done to keep your loved one on the right track?
Here are a five tips that will help you keep your college student motivated.
Strike a Money Deal
There’s a lot for a college student to worry about. They have to worry about getting to class on time, studying for that test, and getting good grades. On top of that, they’re living on their own for the first time, which means taking care of their own dishes, laundry, and more!
If they’re also worried about money, they’re going to be distracted from their studies. Giving them money can help them worry less.
Send money to your college student, but be smart about how you do it. For example, instead of sending money all willy-nilly, strike a deal with them. Agree to give them so much cash for every A they get, or send them money when it’s time to buy books.
By being smart about how you send your college student money, you can make sure it motivates them to keep going instead of finding out the cash went straight to the bar.
Help Them Set Small Goals
The big goal is to graduate from college. That goal may be four or more years away!
Make that big goal seem more doable by helping your college student set small goals instead. Celebrating the end of the semester is a great way to help them stay motivated, but you can also help them set even smaller, daily goals that keep them motivated.
Ask them if they’ve written the rough draft of their paper, if they’ve finished the paper, and if they’ve turned it in. Setting and achieving small goals makes those big goals seem a lot less intimidating.
Celebrate Even the Smallest Successes
There’s no point in setting goals if you aren’t going to celebrate them! Even the smallest successes deserve a celebration.
It’s human nature to always look around the bend for the next big thing. Instead of fully appreciating having met a goal, it’s easy to get sidetracked by moving onto the next goal. That’s a sure-fire way to lose motivation.
Make a big deal about even the littlest successes when your college student calls. That will boost their confidence and make them feel like they can reach all the goals they’re facing.
Help Them Find the Support They Need
College is tough. Your student can’t do it on their own, and you can’t be the only support they lean on when they need a little help. However, finding that support can be difficult, especially with a full schedule of classes!
Put in a little homework of your own to help your student find the support they need. Ideas include:
* Student loan and scholarship information
* Campus tutors in various subjects
* Contact information for counselors and advisors
* Social clubs that meet after class
You can also support them by helping them make appointments, especially if they’re studying far away from home. Helping them find doctors, dentists, and chiropractors, and helping them make appointments, can cause your student to worry less about the details of living and more about studying.
Try Not to Judge
Parenting a college student is hard. You have to learn how to let go and stay in touch just the right amount. That can be nearly impossible if you want to motivate your college student!
However, one of the best things you can do is try not to judge them. The goal is to support a child who naturally comes to you for help and advice. They will be a lot less likely to discuss their challenges and setbacks with you if you spend the entire time on the phone judging their choices and telling them what to change in order to do better next time.
Instead, let them take the lead and know that mistakes happen. A supportive parent is always more motivational than an overbearing parent.
Your child’s motivation has to come from within in order for them to be successful, but that doesn’t mean you can’t help that internal motivation along! With these tips, you can help your child face and celebrate college challenges with confidence.