Consistency is More Important than Intensity

Kids these days. They seem to be in such a hurry to get things done and become accomplished. It can be exhausting (and unrealistic) to try and keep up with their pace. And while we’d like to think they do everything at full speed, there’s actually an advantage to doing things slowly: consistency trumps intensity when learning a task.

Learn more about how children learn and what you can do to help them grow by reading the rest of this article!

Be consistent – hit the same times every day and keep it as routine as possible. And while schedules are certainly important for allowing your child to learn without too much stress or confusion, another reason why they’re so important is because they help children become more successful in learning through consistency.

If you want to learn a new language, it’s important to be consistent in your studies. The more often you study the language, the faster you will grow comfortable with its cadence, vocabulary and pronunciation. The same is true for mathematics or other subjects. Consistency leads to better performance over time. Use 

However, that doesn’t mean that consistency should come at all costs. You should still keep an open line of communication with your child about what works for them and how they best feel learning happens in their lives.

For example, if after several days of studying math problems every day with your child, they start showing signs of stress when you mention adding up numbers with sums larger than ten and they express a strong desire to stop studying math for a while, it is probably best to respect their wishes and relax the study schedule.

This idea of finding out what works well for your child holds true even when they are older. The key at this stage becomes communication about these things – if you find that your teenager is not completing their high school homework because they are overwhelmed with stress or anxiety, you should talk to them about why this is happening and what you can do together to change the situation.

In short: by keeping your routines as consistent as possible, you set yourself up for success not only with those routines now but also in the future when those routines inevitably expand and grow with your child’s development. Essentially establishing consistency early on helps build that extra bit of knowledge that helps to ensure your child’s success later on because they already have a solid foundation.

If you’re at all familiar with the idea of “habit stacking,” which we talked about in this post , then you can see where we got the inspiration for this week’s article! Because really, if building habits works well enough to help us achieve our goals without too much resistance, imagine how powerful it can be when not only do those habits stack up… but they’re also consistent over time.

This is why staying consistent is so important. If your child knows that every day their routine will end with reading books before bedtime, then they’ll learn to automatically associate books with sleep. When your child wakes up groggy and cranky, they may not feel like reading; but if it’s part of their night-time routine, then they’ll be more willing to do it. Not only will this make bedtime easier on both you and your child (and probably help them sleep better), but it also narrows down the number of decision points that need to be made throughout the day – decisions that could lead to distractions or missed opportunities.

The key thing here is not just how consistent you are with your routines (although that certainly helps), but also how consistently you work towards establishing those routines . Establishing new habits isn’t easy, so don’t expect perfection right away – but rather take it one step at a time.

As you work towards your goals, think about what you can do to make it not only easier for yourself now but also in the future as well. That way, when new habits are formed they’ll be consistent over time and eventually become second nature.