Teens today have more pressure than ever before. Peer pressure, school pressure, social and online pressure, maybe even parental pressure. It often comes to a head and teens find themselves incredibly overwhelmed. From the research I have been doing over the past few years, when asking teens their biggest challenge it is almost always, “how can I possibly do it all? How can I keep up with everything? School, friends, sports, relationships, family, etc.”
Now as parents, we worry about peer pressure, bullying, and the safety of our children. How can we help? Especially if they don’t want our help?
Perspective is the #1 thing I like to bring in conversations with teens. Questions can bring infinite perspective to the life of your teen and pull them out of their current reality.
You are their parent, no one knows them better than you do. This also gives you the incredible opportunity of lifting them up, breathing life into their soul. Love and encouragement go a long way.
I believe that peer pressure is especially present when confidence is low.
If teens don’t know who they are and the value they bring… then they’ll likely try to be who everyone else wants them to be.
You can be a great catalyst in this discovery…
What is your teen great at?
What role do they play in your family, at school, on their sports team?
Are they creative, a problem solver, a planner, charismatic, a leader? How would you describe their best attributes? Have you shared and encouraged these attributes in them?
Then… help them to identify the best qualities of their friends, enemies, siblings, teachers. To pull back from current reality and recognize what others are also facing, and the good they bring can go a long way.
I have found that when teens can see outside of the tunnel vision of their everyday reality, and begin to understand their unique contribution, gifts, talents, and passions, the pressure subsides, it is not as important anymore and thus becomes much less of an issue.
They will be armed in confidence.
If I am confident in who I am, why would I want to be anyone else?
NOTE: If you'd like to learn more about how we help teens answers these questions, explore possible paths and design a compelling future...you can read more HERE.