The subject of teenage discipline may mean different things to different people. For some people, it means imposing limits on what their teen child can and can't do. For others, it may mean punishment for an inappropriate act. Yet for others, mentioning the subject of teenage discipline can induce anxiety. Many parents are struggling with out of control teens, and are not sure what to do to turn the situation around.
The first thing to do is to remain calm and relax. You may be wondering exactly how you are supposed to do that when you feel nothing but stress, and maybe even fear, surrounding this situation. The answer: Don't forget to breathe. Have you ever noticed that your breaths become shallow and fast paced when you are angry or anxious? Taking just five minutes to breath in and out through the nose can make a world of difference in your mental state. You will notice your breaths becoming slower and deeper. You will feel calm. Once you are feeling calm, you will be much better equipped to handle a stressful situation involving a teen.
The next thing is to have trust. Trust yourself! Trust that you are a good parent, and that you can turn this situation around. Trust in your child that they will be able to change destructive patterns. The only constant that exists anywhere in the universe is that everything is impermanent, and therefore subject to change. This applies to a bad situation as well. This situation can be turned around.
When a situation involving destructive teen behavior has gone on for a long time, it is time for a new approach. Are there biological factors involved such as bi-polar disorder, or depression? Is the child being properly medicated for these ailments? Are there certain environmental factors that act as triggers to the aggressive behavior? All of these things can be determining factors as to why teens act out.
What part are you playing in this behavior? I know what you're thinking. But, here is something to consider. Every relationship involves projection. We are projecting onto the other person, and they are projecting right back to us. Do you think it's possible for another human being to carry the full weight of our idea of who they should be? If you say that out loud, it sounds ridiculous. And, really it is ridiculous. It's not possible for another person to be exactly who we think they should be. Being aware that there is projection from both parties involved is a great way to begin to see who that person really is, rather than who we think they should be.
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