Teenagers are some of the most fascinating, brilliant people on this planet, and also some of the most misunderstood. As parents, you may wonder how to guide them, how much advice to give, or how much you should control their choices. You may search for the latest ‘expert’ advice on how to keep them out of danger or help them grow into responsible adults. It can be very confusing!
But what if it weren’t that difficult? Here’s a bold statement to consider: You know everything you need to know to effectively and lovingly guide your teenager to their highest potential. Really! It’s a matter of listening to and trusting your inner guidance. As a parent, you can learn how to slow down, listen and connect to your inner wisdom. That wisdom will help give you clarity in each situation and point you in the direction of what’s right for your unique, individual teen.
If connecting to your own inner guidance is something you aren’t sure you know how to do, you may want to look for a resources like books, classes or a coach or advisor who can teach you how to connect with yourself and new ways of connecting with your teen. It really comes down to learning how to find your inner guidance and trusting yourself enough to follow it.
As you learn how to trust your inner knowing, you can teach your teen how to do the same. You can give them space to discover and follow their internal guidance and you can trust your teen to make choices that are best for them and that will help them grow along their chosen path.
You may ask, “If teens really know what’s best for them, why do so many make ‘bad’ choices?” Consider that some teens make choices that appear ‘bad’ because they are not taught to listen to and to trust their own inner guidance. Instead they are giving up their choice to people and circumstances outside of themselves. Because they are not connected to their own inner knowing, they may make choices based on what is popular, what may appear easier or what may help them to feel like they belong somewhere. Ultimately that doesn’t work. It doesn’t work for teens and it doesn’t work for adults.
When teens know themselves more deeply and realize you trust their ability to make good choices, their self-confidence is enhanced. Teens want to live meaningful lives and make positive contributions to society. Showing them that you believe in their ability to do so will greatly improve your relationship with them and improve the world in which we live.
Some suggested reading:
Zen Parenting: The Art of Learning What You Already Know
Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting
The Parent’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents