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3 Simple Ways to Connect With Your Teen!

 

There have been so many wonderful things that have come out of Shelter-In-Place.

Our coaching team at PMT has discovered that Shelter-In-Place is a potential "family connection" jackpot.

Here are three simple ways for you to take advantage of this crazy time and connect with your teen: 

  1. Have Fun Together...Their Way

In this crazy season, creating space for family fun is a must.

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Having a hard time getting your teen to join in? 

Let them choose what you do!

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Play their favorite video game, make a silly video together, do Snapchat filters, start a pillow fight, watch their favorite Netflix show. Enter their world and do whatever what brings them joy, and do it together.

Out of your comfort zone?  Do it anyway!

Connected parents push themselves to enter their teen's world. 

Shared experiences help create trust and connection, especially when you willingly step into THEIR world.

 

  1. Stop, Look, Listen

While some teens are behaving better during Shelter-In-Place, many others are behaving worse. 

It makes sense...Shelter-In-Place is torture for young people.

When a tween/teen acts out, has disrespect, or makes a poor choice, it can be so easy to react: Nag. Scold. Pep-talk. Snap. Punish. Avoid.

Instead, take the time to STOP what you are doing....LOOK into their eyes...and really LISTEN.

Have you noticed how often you actually look into your kid's eyes when you speak with them?

Some parents rarely do this...and are missing out.

Yes, it can be easier to have a conversation while cooking, driving, or while cleaning, but if you want human connection, eye contact is a must.

Be mindful about your eyes when you are communicating.

Take the time to STOP, LOOK and LISTEN....or if needed, wait until you can so you can give them your undivided attention.

 

3. Dig Deeper

Teenagers are masters at responding with as few words as possible.

Sometimes, even one word will do it:

"Yes."

"No."

"Fine."

"Good."

"Nothing."

It is easy for parents to fall into a pattern of asking questions that don’t need much more than one-word to answer.

Instead, find creative ways to ask questions or that encourage your teen to go deeper.

Instead of asking, “How was your day?” try, ”What was the funniest/best/weirdest thing that happened today?”

Instead of asking “Do you want to do something as a family today?” say “We are going to do a family activity today and you are picking it, so, what are we doing?”. 

Here is another great list of good questions.

Human connection is a two-way street.

Encourage your teen to share their world with you, but also share your world with them!

Invite them to do things that you enjoy, have meaningful conversations about what is going on in your life, don’t be afraid to go a little deeper. If you model deep conversations and deep connections, they can learn how to do it! 

 

 

Patsy Conner

Family Coach 

ParentingModernTeens.com

Click HERE to schedule a coaching session for your teen to meet with Patsy.

Click HERE  to read "Young Men Are Lions - And Need To To Feel Like One."

Click HERE to read “7 Things EVERY Teen Girl Needs to Hear From Her Parents.”

Click HERE for Sean's article, "Why Teens Need EQ Skills".

Click HERE to read Sean's article, "How To Evaluate Your Teen's Emotional Maturity".

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