It’s a brand new year. Perhaps it’s time to look at how your parenting habits impact your adolescent’s growth and development.
Some parenting solutions can bring unexpected results for your entire family, no matter the reason.
Recent research shows that the teenage years can be difficult for both parents and their children. These studies also show how parenting strategies can help make a positive change in a child’s life.
Resolutions: What are they for?
Everybody makes resolutions from now on. What is a resolution exactly? How can you apply resolutions to parenting? According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a resolution can be defined as “the act of simplifying a complex idea into simpler ones.”
Parents agree that adolescence can be confusing and complex. Many parents feel powerless to help their teens through these difficult years. What happens when you simplify the complex into practical parenting strategies that make a difference?
Now you have a resolution you can implement!
Too many resolutions are not sustainable. These are two issues that families of adolescents face. Parents can help their children thrive by understanding the root cause and reducing the complexity.
Simple Parenting Solutions to Help You Handle Complex Issues
“My Teen is Angry”
A Harvard Medical School study found that 63.3% reported anger attacks involving threatening violence, destroying property, and engaging in violent acts. You can reduce anger in your family by looking deeper into the issue.
In the Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle suggests that “where there is anger, there is always pain underneath.”
From where does anger originate?
Anger is the tip of an iceberg, according to psychologists. You see only acts of frustration on the outside. There are hidden feelings underneath, such as helplessness, sadness and insecurity. The child might feel overwhelmed by expectations or traumatized by life events.
THE RESOLUTION: MEET ANGER WITH EMPATHY.
Empathy can often help to diffuse anger. Take the time to look beneath the surface. Children learn anger from their parents by learning to identify and express their emotions and modeling empathy.
Michele Borba, the psychologist, claims empathy is key to raising happy, healthy children. She cites over 350 neuroscience and developmental research references in her book. She also lists nine teaching habits that encourage empathy.
The bottom line is that children need to feel heard, seen, and understood. It’s easy to let anger rise when they feel ignored or misunderstood.
“My Teen isn’t Motivated”
Parents are increasingly confronted with the problem of high school and middle school students becoming apathetic. A recent study on apathy in middle school students showed the complexity of motivation. Students felt unmotivated due to many factors, including distractions from technology, lack of resourcefulness and expectations from their parents.
The study’s highlight was the discussion on self-satisfaction. Data showed that motivated students feel confident in their abilities and have high self-esteem. The statements of parents’ expectations were similar to those made by all the motivated students. One student stated, “My parents always tell my to try my best.” Another said that her parents told her, “If you try your best, no matter what the outcome, it will all be okay.”
Students who identified as “unmotivated” said their parents expected them to achieve certain grades. None of these students said that their parents would accept their best efforts.
As anger is, the lack of motivation is just the tip of an iceberg. It’s the outward manifestation of inner turmoil. Children need to be accepted for who they are and not for what they have achieved.
THE SOLUTION: LET YOUR CHILDREN KNOW THAT YOU BELIEVE IN THEM.
Ask yourself, “What expectations am i communicating to my teen?”
After decades of research into what motivates children to learn, Carol Dweck, a psychologist at Stanford, coined “growth mindset” in her book Mindset. She says that success and achievement go beyond the child’s learning ability. It also includes their attitude about learning.
Parents who praise their children for their efforts, such as working hard and doing their best, build confidence in their ability to succeed. Children often fear failure when parents are focused on the results, such as specific grades or achievements. This can lead to a fixed mindset and often leads to apathy. How to Foster a Growth Mindset in Your Teen. This article explains five ways to encourage a growth mindset.
The bottom line: Children must believe in themselves to succeed in life. Please encourage your child to be happy with themselves.