We sure know that parenting a teenager can be like lassoing a volcano!
ARE YOU TIRED YET??
Want to be less tired?
If you’re like too many parents, you dread waking up each morning and dealing with the unpredictabilities and even animosity spewing from your teenager.
Here’s a thought
– the wisest reply to ALMOST EVERY teen issue – is to ASK - -
“why do you say that?”
“why do you think that?”
“what tells you that or supports that?” from you past [experience]
WHY is this universally powerful?
Because (1) we frequently reply to issues – THINKING we know what they’re thinking and we reply to that – and we are often wrong.
And sometimes, even if we’re right. a teen will tell us we’re wrong, just to disagree!
Secondly, by subtly asking them to explain their thinking, it causes them to reflect on THEIR OWN thoughts and thinking
Thirdly – it often diminishes the venom and anger they may be feeling
Fourth – it gives you time to consider and plan YOUR REPLY [which very often, is another question]
So the keys are:
· Pause [take a breath, release any emotion]
· Gently ask WHY _____?
· Follow up in a low-key manner with no [negative] emotion,
· maybe with a non-commital “That’s interesting…”
· OR “that’s an interesting thought – thanks for explaining”
BTW – the minute you make it a debate or argument, even if you win, you lose!
Think long-term vs. short-term. Do you really need to in this debate or issue?
We learn most from our mistakes – allow them their mistake-making leeway.
In a huge proportion of cases, they’ll come back, with love!
Questions or comments? CoachSteve@Launch-Your-Life.com