Try Without Aiming
Our education system sets our children up to believe that they have to make a huge effort in order to get good results. This is often re-inforced at home by parents, particularly if we are a parent with a 'good work ethic' (which my children are always telling me I have passed on to them, which seems an euphemism for 'you were never around when we were growing up'!). Even therapists talk about “working on yourself', because we are taught at a very young age that everything must be earned, that effort brings just rewards, and that nothing comes from nothing.
But let's pretend for a moment that the opposite is true. Hard work often means overburdening the mind and debilitating the body so that it becomes counter-productive. In the high-tech, fast-paced existence that we and our children inhabit we already find it difficult 'switching off' and often exist in fight or flight mode even in our sleep. In certain cases, making an effort is not just useless, it’s actually counterproductive. Success rests rather on maintaining our serenity and tranquillity, on being at peace with oneself.
So perhaps we need to teach our children that there are some goals that can only be reached indirectly. By sincerely abandoning any attempt to attain them. Without aiming for them. In other words, letting time do its work. Perhaps there is a case for teaching our children the art of not trying too hard.