2020 has been longer than most years, or at least it surely feels that way. As the year is nearly drawing to an end, it becomes more difficult to remain focused and to stay on task – even more so for teenagers!
If you’ve heard more than enough refrains of “Whatever!”,
possibly coupled with a slamming door,
follow these tips
to keep your teenager motivated for the last part of the year:
Help your teenager to remember
This year has thrown too much at all of us. It tends to make one less motivated, more distracted – and possibly more forgetful – as you would otherwise feel.
Help your teenager to become more organised by using visual aids such as charts, fridge memos and timetables and by creating daily and/or weekly routines. Don’t use verbal reminders too often – that equates to nagging in a teen’s mind and, let’s face it, nagging is a huge demotivator.
Give your teen a say
This is also known as ‘Letting go’ (also see: How to let go and let your child take responsibility for his/her studies and How to empower your teenager to be independent).
If your teen prefers to sleep late but flourishes when burning the midnight oil, don’t expect them to spend the entire day in front of their books as well. If your teen works hard throughout the week, going out on the weekend should not pose a problem to you.
Put it all into perspective
Sit your teen down and teach them this mantra: You have to do what you have to do so you can do what you want to do.
This is true of so many things in life. You, as the parent, have to work hard in order to have enough disposable income to play, or go on holiday, too. They have to work hard at their schoolwork if they want to get into university/college after school or if they want to get a job that suits them and that they enjoy to do.
Pay attention to what they say and do
It is not only younger kids that need attention, and positive affirmation. Teenagers might not admit to it, or even respond in an appropriate manner, but they want to feel significant and loved too. They want to know that they matter.
Let them know that you recognise their achievements, at school or otherwise. People do better, and make more of an effort when they feel better about themselves!
Set a good example
The things you do and the way you react influence your teenager’s behaviour; they also learn from you and follow your example (although they might not admit to this!).
Set limits – within reason – for your teenager and follow-through to establish whether this is upheld. If teenagers see you following-through they learn the life skills they need in order to become responsible members of society.
Don’t neglect to communicate how you feel, always keep your cool and teach them never to give up.
A measure of fun and humour goes a long way and keeps spirits up!