Five Parenting Tips: Promoting Healthy Social Skills and Character Among Teens
Slowly, but surely mental health is gaining ground and getting the attention it so desperately deserves. Everyone is stressed out. In the middle of this highly stressful environment, there is an overwhelming trend toward a “me first” attitude. Our teens are becoming more entitled, angry and demanding, and less helpful, grateful, and compassionate.
Parents have the power to change this trend. This entitlement and “me first” attitude, is at the root of most criminal activity. From small infractions to murder; when an investigation is done, the underlying motive is selfishness and entitlement.
The only way to guard against this is to not feed into selfishness, and intentionally help develop better social and characterological skills in teens.
Be The Model. Show teens by your actions how to be grateful, and compassionate. You are a living advertisement for your teens.
Give Compliments. Pay attention to the good things they do. Provide many opportunities for teens to be helpful, compassionate, and friendly. Positive feedback will reinforce their excellent behavior, and it boosts their immune system.
Make helpfulness a part of everyday living. When kindness is a part of everyday life, it becomes a part of the character. Parents practice being kind and supportive to your teens. Watch them grow kinder.
Express gratitude daily. If you never express thankfulness towards your teens, they will eventually stop trying to please you. They are learning that it doesn’t make a difference if they are kind or not, they can’t satisfy you.
Encourage good social skills. In today’s climate of