Common Mistakes Parents Make When Parenting Teens – Only comment on negative behavior

Mistake – Only comment on negative behavior – Do you gladly welcome good behavior, good grades and good performance of your child? Do you complement them when they are doing positive things? Probably not very often.  Usually I find parents only talk about negative behavior. This can lead them to get discouraged.

Solution:  Now don’t think that I never want you to reprimand your teen.  Just remember that people respond better to encouragement and positive feedback than negative.  Look for ways you can catch them doing the behaviors you want instead of only looking for the negative.  “John, I liked how you finished your homework today without me telling you to do it.”  When you say things like this, it lets them know what you expect.

Your teen is learning about life and how things work.  They are pushing limits so look at what they do as a learning experience.  In my L.O.V.E. to Choose decision-making model, the E stands for Evaluate.    Have them evaluate what they did.  Was it a good decision?  Are they on the wrong path and they need to make a change right now to get back on track?  Was it not the best decision but they learned from what they did and next time they will probably choose something better.

If you are negative all the time when they make a mistake, they can develop a fear of failure.  People like that tend to avoid risk.  Without risk people don’t grow and change.  It’s risky to reach for a goal.  You need to step out of your comfort zone and it does not feel good when you do that.  The most successful people are always stepping out of their comfort zone and failing.  They learn from those failures and keep improving.  It’s easier to help them learn from the experience if you are calm and not emotionally charged.  Your brain is not working if you are emotionally charged.  Our decisions are what determine our life path so help your teen learn to make good ones.

Have you found positive ways to help teach your children how to make decisions?  Let me know experiences you have with positive vs. negative discipline.

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