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By Manuja Jeyabalan

By Manuja Jeyabalan

Goal setting is important for any adolescent. Learning to challenge yourself and keeping a mindset can teach you a lot. A great way to learn is learning from your mistakes, but learning from your parent’s mistakes is even better. My father Nadesu Jeyabalan thought me a lot of things, which were his mistakes. I interviewed my father about his adolescent years and his goals.

“My father graduated with a degree of electrical engineering.”

My father’s goal during his adolescence years was to make his mother happy. My father grew up without a father of his own and it was a struggle for his mother to generate money. My father was able to accomplish his goal by making sure he maintained a commendable grade during his high school and university years. During those times my father and grandmother worked every day by vending go to drinks and snacks. That was the only way my father was able to go to university. My father realised all the hard work his mother did for him to make sure he goes to university, for that he knew he had to work hard and make all that hard work pay off. My father missed opportunity was during his 2nd year in university when he was asked to participate in a teacher’s assistant program in math. If my father took that opportunity he would have got paid and could have gotten a teaching degree. My father chose not to take the program because of the time it would take out

of his day. What he could have done was plan it out by managing his time. This caused my father to look back and realise what a great opportunity he missed.

“Family is very important, must be looked upon more that friends and grades.”

“Work effectively and maintain your time.”

Advice my father gave me was to use my time effectively. During school time, work productively, ask questions and take notes. At home, finishing homework on time, re-look notes and has sometime to myself. My smart goal is to obtain an above 80% average for the term one report card. More


advice from my father was to record my marks and figure out what subjects need more work than others.

“Procrastinating has a major affect on the work we do “

Some obstacles that would get in the way of an above 80% average would be procrastinating in work. I have a habit of leaving work for the last minute. I would start my assignments at least 3 days earlier than the due date. Another obstacle would be talking to my friends instead of homework. I would talk to them after doing my homework. My enabling goals are to attend all my classes, participate in class, study for tests and take down notes. A time management strategy that’s useful for my smart goal would be not to procrastinate and plan out my hour blocks. I will have about 2 hours a day set for homework. I’m sure if I continue to follow these

steps I would achieve my smart goal.

Some similarity that my father and I shared through our goals were not being able to use our time wisely and planning out the hours of our days. My Smart goal shows intellectual development because I am trying to do better by learning and improving the grades I’m getting. My Smart goal also shows emotional development because being able to change my usual working habits, made me sometimes depressed and tired while I worked. My smart goal will help me as a teenager because it is an academic goal which will help me improve in various ways.


Family studies (2)