Catch Me If You Can…You Can’t Control My Mind2 min read
Can you remember the first time your teen refused to do what you asked? Or you got the passive obedience treatment – “they told me to sit and not go anywhere. In my body I was sitting but my mind was walking towards the door”.
Teen years represent conflict years for both teens and parents. The teen is both an adult and a child. The problem is that since the teen is just coming out of the child stage, parents tend to still see them as children. The teen on the other hand thinks he is no longer a child and does not need to always be told what to do. Whether as parents, teen workers, teachers, controlling teens is a mirage. Even when they do what you ask, you may still miss the more important issue – owning the mind of your teen.
Instead of control, think connect. When you connect with your teen, you will be able to have conversations that lead the teen to take the action you are proposing. The modern era has opened the teen to a new world – a world where their opinion counts. Almost everything is decided with a vote, reality shows, elections, rightness of a lifestyle, best movies, best songs, best videos, the winning idea. If everyone else is saying their opinion matters they can’t understand why are you not?
When you aim for connection, your teen will be able to believe and trust that you want the best for them.
Psychologist often calls the teen years, the stage of temporary insanity. They want to dare everything and explore the entire world around them. Don’t kill the sense adventure but equip them so they can always make the right choices. Unless they make the decision, they won’t own it.
Connecting with your teen will help you equip them to make the right choice
Make that choice – lead by connecting not by controlling
Solid Foundation, a teen-focused NGO I volunteer with conducts trainings for parents, teachers and significant adults in the lives of teens on how to face challenges of raising teens in a contemporary world. A brief profile of the organisation is found here.