Parenting your adolescent is possibly one of the most challenging experiences in your life and their negative qualities can often be the qualities you think of first.
As we begin a new year, I want to encourage you to focus on a few of the aspects of your child’s character that you particularly admire or you want to strengthen in them throughout the year.
Here are some suggestions:
- Focused (pick your topic like school, sports, etc. or just generally)
- Kind (pick your people like a sibling, friend or just generally)
The list can go on and on.
After you have made a list of the qualities that you want to focus on, select just three or four of them that are particularly important to you and write them down in a journal or notebook. Each week during 2018, choose one of the 3-4 qualities you would like to target. Look for expressions of that quality in your child that you have observed in different ways throughout the week and note what you see or hear in your notebook. Write down specifics like when you observed your child’s positive response and how it influenced the situation.
Give Weekly Encouragement
Spend a few private moments with your child at some point during the week and encourage them with the positive insights you have noticed in their character. Be specific so they can appreciate that you are serious about what you are saying and not just trying to randomly encourage them.
Some weeks will be more inspiring than others, but always have something positive to express. Your opinion of them matters the most, so be generous. It is difficult being an adolescent. They are bombarded with negative comments and thoughts every day. These special times of connection with you will become a treasure for your child and for you.
As you move through the year, hopefully, your conversations can deepen and you will get to know each other in a new and more mature way.
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