For some reason, teenagers are always assumed to be laid back, distant and difficult to comprehend. That’s not entirely true. Your attitude and approach towards your teen have got a lot to do with how they turn out to be.
We have all gone through those teenage years but somehow when it comes to dealing with our own teen, we become the strict parents who expect the world from them. Let’s face it, your teenagers are going through a lot, academically and personally. You cannot put your hands up and then wonder why they are so irresponsible, demotivated and clueless in life.
This is a phase that calls for immense patience, understanding and care. So, follow these 4 practices to keep your teenager motivated, while building a strong rapport with them –
Do you often complain about how your teenager does not listen to you? Well, maybe you can change that by trying to listen to them first and having conversations on a regular basis.
Communicating with teenagers is truly a skill. It surely does not involve you doing all the talking and expecting them to obey your orders. Treat your teenager like an adult, have healthy conversations and don’t hesitate to apologize if you make a mistake.
Pay close attention to their behaviors. Maybe your teenager is overburdened with college assignments and all they need is someone they can trust and talk to. So, the next time they say, “Can I get my quick essay help?”, instead of reprimanding them to do it on their own, help them out and ease some burden off their shoulders.
When was the last time you said, “good job” to your child or appreciated their efforts? Words of encouragement and appreciation can do wonders to your child’s morale.
Given the physical and emotional changes they are undergoing, your teenager wants to feel appreciated and valued. Whether it’s a simple thank you, a pat on the back or even a hug – even the slightest gesture that shows your love and appreciation is enough to keep your teens motivated and in high spirits.
So, don’t be the parent who only highlights mistakes and compares their children to their peers. This terrible habit is only worsening your relationship with your child and sabotaging their self-esteem like nothing else.
Your teenager is no longer a child who needs handholding – the faster you accept it the better. Nothing is more frustrating for a teenager who is expected to act like an adult but is constantly treated like a child.
This is the phase where your teen is forming opinions and learning how to deal with things differently. In order for them to grow up to be responsible and mature adults, you need to first treat them like one. What does that involve? Start with engaging them in decision making processes, hear them out and let them learn from their mistakes. Involving them makes them act more responsibly while boosting their confidence. In case of disagreements, explain yourself calmly instead of shutting them off when they ask questions. These simple changes in your parenting style are sure to go a long way in giving rise to emotionally stable, confident adults.
Spend Quality Time
No, talking to them about their future plans does not count as ‘spending quality time’ together. Sometimes, it’s best to have the most casual conversations with your teens and get to know them better.
As a busy, working parent, it might be difficult for you to spend time with them but in such cases, even having one meal together in a day, going out on weekends or planning a family holiday every 6 months helps. Indulge in activities your teen enjoys doing or take a class together, prioritizing spending time with your teenager helps strengthen the bond you share and breaks barriers.
Friend your teenager – you will be surprised to see what a positive impact that can have on their lives.
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