He was determined and focused. He was persevering. This young boy – maybe five or six – was busy in the yard. Kneeling, standing, moving quickly to another spot. Repeat. I soon realized what he was doing. He was pulling dandelions from the yard. But, he was pulling only the flower part. No stem. No root.

Who knows if this was his own idea or if someone had sent him outside to get rid of the weeds? He probably thought he was being very helpful. And, at a glance, the yard will look better. But, not for long.

Deadheading is defined as “to remove withered flowers from a plant, as to encourage further blooming.” Oh-oh! His parents don’t want further blooming.

When his efforts appear to not work or when a parent or another adult expresses disappointment after seeing what he did, what will happen? I wonder if he will decide to not put forth effort again. In other words, “Why bother?” Could this be a reason many don’t persevere?

We must remember to be approachable so our children/students can ask us for instructions. Better yet, we should provide information on how to do something before they need to ask. This way, as they persevere, they’ll be successful.

Success leads to many things, including perseverance the next time a similar opportunity comes along. And, maybe even with something very different. If this isn’t the case, it may be because the task is now so easy that perseverance isn’t necessary. Increase the challenge to rebirth the perseverance character quality.

Is this relevant to children you know? To yourself? What will you do about it?