Always running late? Homework doesn’t get done? Chores are regularly forgotten? Teen procrastination can create so much stress and anxiety for parents, as well as the kids doing it. They may think they’re good at working under pressure, but in reality they’re just piling on the stress that will lead to burnout. While some procrastination is completely normal, the teenage years are the perfect time to work on building new routines that will prepare them for the increasing challenges of high school, college and beyond.
Back to School can be a good thing and a bad thing… The beginning of the school year can be exciting: starting in a new school, challenging new classes, seeing school friends more often. But it can also be chaotic, disorganized, and challenging. Shifting from summer to a rigorous school schedule can be a painful transition, for parents as well as teens. Early wake-ups, homework, school projects, after-school clubs and activities can fill up a day pretty quickly. This year our oldest is starting high school, which means we also have a totally new routine to get used to. So, it’s totally understandable that a few things will fall through the cracks as students and parents adjust to the new demands.
We talk a lot about SMART goals for teens on this website and on our Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages because we are big believers in everyone’s ability to improve their chances of success. But, I also realize that learning how to define each goal as a SMART goal is not so easy if you haven’t had any practice doing that. The very first time I sat down with my own kids to turn their goals into SMART Goals, it took quite a few tries and discussions back and forth to walk them through the process that would give them a “stretch goal” that was also defined in enough detail that they could now work off of their activities list or action plan. I even looked for examples of SMART goals for teens, and honestly I didn’t really find much to go on.
This summer is flying by! At least that’s what it feels like at our house. It seems like the end of school only gave way to tired teens and tired parents. We tried to give our kids time to recover, sleeping in, extra time with their friends, knowing that the first month they would still be pretty busy with tennis camps, dance competitions, chores, and family activities. And now we’re halfway through the summer, and it seems that we’ve fallen into some bad habits of too much time in front of electronics, and maybe not enough motivation to get away from them.
Wouldn’t it be great to get your tween or teen to use some of their summer to work on a Genius Project that builds on a passion or something they’re curious about?
So it’s the start of summer, again, and everyone is tired. But, you’re dreading your teens spending yet another summer in front of the TV, phones, and video games. When kids are too old for summer camp, but too young for a job or internship, it can be a real challenge to find a way to keep kids busy in something meaningful that they will learn from. As our own kids have gotten older, our agreement is that they can stay home as long as they spend scheduled time working on something meaningful. Last year they worked on their skills for tennis and dance, and this year we’re adding the idea of a Genius Project.
Teens are told all the time to find a passion, find their sense of purpose. But that’s not so easy to do without some serious self-reflection. Is your teen having trouble figuring out what makes them truly happy? A vision board for teens could be the key to unleashing their dreams!
A vision board that shows them their dreams NOW, like going to a specific university, playing varsity sports, getting the lead in a school play, or publishing a website or podcast, can be a very powerful tool for self-motivation.
Have you been hearing a lot about grit and perseverance but don’t know how to help your teen develop grit? Grit and growth mindset have been the key buzzwords from schools and educators in the last few years. But, for those of us not in the school system, we may be left with lots of questions.
Does my teen have grit?
How do I know if my teen has grit?
If my child doesn’t have grit, can it be developed?
If my child needs help developing grit, how can I help?
Does your teen need help learning to organize and prioritize their work? Executive functioning skills are the key!
It seems like every teenager has trouble planning their day around their homework, sports activities, or just plain getting things done. But, we are not born with organizational and planning skills! But with a little patience and practice kids of all ages can develop skills appropriate for their age.
Creating an easy to follow system can play a big role in bringing your teen around to complete their work, while reducing the stress they feel from being overwhelmed. So they can get ready to get more done!
Today’s world is so different than 20 years ago. There are higher expectations for accomplishing great things at an earlier age. Getting straight A’s to get into a great college are just the beginning. Every teen needs to perform highly in sports, music, or drama. They also need to make sure they stand out in their extracurricular activities with special talents and leadership skills. Learning how to set and work towards SMART goals could be the key to success!
But, no one teaches teens how to get all of this done. They don’t know how to define goals in a way that they improve their chances of success. This means they’re on their own to learn how to get organized and stay focused, while juggling many challenges with very limited time.