Posts tagged ‘teens’

What Do I Need to Do To Get Your Attention❓

Starting my How to Love Yourself in 30 Days online course on June 5th. Click on the link to join.

What’s one of the first things you do when you get a moment to yourself? You probably pull out your phone. 📱

There’s so much you can do on your phone. You can have a whole conversation by text or talking. You can play a game, shop or watch one of your favorite shows.

However, when you’re raising children, there’s so much of you that’s required for them to grow up healthy: physically, mentally, and emotionally. Most important is to know what’s going on in their heads.

I was talking to one of my friends about their kids who are under the age of 5. We all agreed that if your child was awake and the house was quiet 🤫, they were probably getting into something! You had to watch them constantly!

baby in bathroom

As our kids get older, we feel that we don’t have to watch them as closely and assume that things are okay with them. If they weren’t, our kids would tell us. Natural assumption right?

Wrong!

In families today, our children are relying on us to put aside our devices and initiate discussions; listen to what’s going on with them. It’s not easy….

Your teen will talk. They have to be assured that you’re listening and won’t judge them. There can’t be any topic that you won’t discuss with them. Are you willing to talk about anything and everything? Can you listen without letting your facial expressions show how horrified you are with the conversation? 😫🤯

We are living in times where anything is possible and are kids want to explore, try out new and different theories, relationships and experiences. Being able to share their thoughts and concerns with you, helps them put them in perspective. Keeping the lines of communication open, by relating to your child’s thoughts and feelings; asking them what they think – makes all the difference in the world.

Have a meal together; it doesn’t matter which one. First require that all phones and tablets be put away. 2nd requirement: allow your child the freedom to say whatever is on their mind (must be respectful). Ask “Tell me what’s going on”. The first several conversations may be awkward while your kids try to figure out if you’re being honest and whether they can say what they feel. 🤷🏽‍♀️

Every time I hear or read about another mass shooting; I wonder who the shooter had to talk to within his family. If they shot or killed a family member before taking other lives, I wonder what kind of dysfunction was taking place. Were they able to share the fact that they were being bullied or that they were feeling anti-social? Were they abused? Are they suffering from a mental illness that went unaddressed?

Shooter & Ak rifle

I realize these are simple questions for complex issues. But what I do know is that young people have lots of challenges going on in their lives these days. We as parents can’t solve them all. However, being watchful, following your intuition (if you feel something is wrong, it is) and making it safe to tell you what’s going on, goes a long way to minimize issues that cause our kids to self-harm or harm others. Peace.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my parent coaching programs that help guide you through Aging Parents, Mother and Daughter drama, Mothers and their Sons challenges, Fathers and Daughters as well as Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Coach, Author & Speaker

clynnwilliams.com

May 26, 2022 at 9:15 pm 1 comment

What Being Patient Does Not Mean

Have you ever had somebody tell you, “just be patient, it will come in time.”?

What did you think?

Did a little guilt or anger creep in? Or perhaps all you could think about is OMG, when is “it” going to happen!?

The problem with statements like just be patient, is that we are impatient by nature. We want what we want, right away. Today’s technology just exacerbates that right-now mentality because of our ability to request & respond to people immediately!

Today, I’m not interested in talking about how to be patient; what I do want to talk about, is what being patient does not mean.

For creative, inventive, amazing people, there are many other things to do, to prepare for what’s coming. Here are things I think about when I am waiting

  • Is there any preparation that I can complete?
  • Are there other unrelated tasks that need to be completed?
  • What fun activities can I do, to take my mind off of “are we there yet” questions?
  • Walking, yoga, running, or working-out, are great activities to help you refocus

Preparing for something new that’s coming into my life, whether it’s a book that I’m writing, new clients joining my coaching program, or a vacation that I sorely need, requires patience.

Being patient does not mean being inactive or sitting still. Instead you are focusing your energies on activities, thoughts and preparation, so that when what you are expecting to come, occurs, you are ready for it!

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my parenting coaching programs that help guide you through Aging Parents, Mother and Daughter drama, Mothers and their Sons challenges, Fathers and Daughters as well as Fathers and their Sons.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Coach, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

April 5, 2022 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

The Secret Lives of Teens on Social Media: Here’s What You Need to Know

Social media has become an integral part of our everyday lives. Parents use it, just like their children. However, on average, teenagers are the ones who spend the most time on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, TikTok and similar platforms.

This leaves many parents worried. Some are afraid that this habit will grow into an addiction, while others are concerned about cyberbullying, over-sharing, and an “all-about-attention” attitude.

Author Donna Lynn Hope asks an important question: “How different would people act if they couldn’t show off on social media? Would they still do it?”

If our children were to be born in more innocent times, without social media, would they be any different?

Consider these questions:

  • How do we know what our children are doing online?

  • Is there a way to control our child’s behavior on social media, without invading their privacy and breaking their trust?

  • How do we recognize if social media is negatively affecting our children?

This topic is complicated, and there are no simple answers. However, if you ask your child about the time they spend on social media, you might be surprised at how willing they are to talk about it.

When you speak with them about their emotions and challenges, and address potential issues in self-esteem, you may find that social media won’t pose such a threat to them.

Even so, you may still be wondering how you can safely explore your child’s secret life on social media.

These solutions will help:

  1. Dignify their devices. If you want to limit your child’s social media usage, avoid taking away their device. They will find another one. Help them find effective ways to self-regulate, instead.

    • Fear of missing out often motivates the time spent on social media.

    • However, teens are aware of the consequences this habit creates. Encourage them to reflect on these consequences and focus on the impact social media overload has on their personal, academic, and other goals.

  2. Ask about the apps. Ask your child which apps they spend the most time on. Is it Instagram, Facebook, or perhaps Snapchat? Once you find out, install those apps on your phone, too, and figure out how they work.

    • Some apps have geolocation which can pose a real danger. Try to manage your child’s social media activity by informing them of the danger rather than imposing your opinion.

    • Don’t be a manager, be a mentor.

  3. Help them to protect their privacy. Talk about privacy settings on different social media accounts. Some teens are not aware of this option.

    • Agree with them to accept only the followers and friends that they know personally. This is not an easy task for a teen because the number of followers is often the barometer of popularity.

    • However, if they understand the necessity for well-managed online presence, this shouldn’t be a problem.

  4. Talk about sexting. Parents find the infamous conversation about “The Birds and the Bees” just as awkward as children do. However, now you have another level to deal with – sexting.

    • Teens can often confuse sending explicit messages and photos for intimacy that might not exist.

    • Talk about what it means to have a healthy relationship and how to develop and maintain one.

  5. Overcome social media prejudice. Many parents believe that social media is completely, or almost completely, bad. However, it is neither good nor bad per se. It’s a new form of communication.

    • When parents talk to their children about social media from this standpoint, the child is likely to withhold and hide information.

    • Genuine curiosity and an open mind about your child’s interest in social media can make a significant difference.

  6. Care about their emotions. Teenagers want their opinions to be heard. This especially goes for the things they’re passionate or angry about. Social media offers instant feedback to their posts, which makes kids feel listened to, validated, and acknowledged.

    • However, if you offer empathy for challenges your child is facing, you can provide listening and validation inside of your family, too. This will give you an insight into what your teen posts on social media and an opportunity to help them self-filter.

When your child asks you for the first time if they can open a social media account, avoid judging them or jumping to conclusions. Accept their need to engage in such community-based way of communication, talk about it, and help them build a safe profile.

Teach them how to protect themselves and what to expect.

You’ll never have all the information about their activity, but if you’re interested and understanding, you might get just the right amount.

I help parents build the kind of communication and trust that allows parent-child relationships to grow and feel better through coaching and parent classes. Email me for more information: info@clynnwilliams.com 😘 

Thanks for reading my blog and following me on Instagram and Twitter @MsParentguru.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Coach, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

November 5, 2021 at 8:00 am Leave a comment

My Teen Is Old Enough…

Being a teen is overrated. They are old enough to know what to do, but they don’t have the maturity or experience to consistently make the right decisions.

Teen male on a motorcycle

Being a teen is overrated. They are old enough to know what to do, but they don’t have the maturity or experience to consistently make the right decisions.

I was the oldest child and my mom and dad taught me the difference between right and wrong. I was responsible for “setting a good example” for my brother and sister. While I didn’t want to disappoint them, my parents also had “eyes” in the community and throughout the city; other adults who would report back if they saw me in places where they didn’t think I should be. Even so, I broke the rules… like the time I rode on my boyfriend’s motorcycle. Two broken rules:

  • No boyfriends (at my age)
  • No riding on anyone’s motorcycle

Never mind that we could have an accident and I could be hurt or killed. That never occurred to me (as a teen) because I was fearless and willing to try things. Even if it meant breaking the rules.

Parents often believe that once their child becomes a teenager, they don’t need as much supervision. That’s not true either. You don’t have to worry that your teen will fall down the stairs, like a 2- or 3-year-old. But they could accept a ride from a stranger when they need to get someplace on time. Or they may be tricked into giving out their phone number in an online chat, because the person they’re talking to says they are 15 too, like your child.

Think about the recent rash of carjackings or smash and grab crimes that are being performed by teens. Some of the kids are 12 or 13 years old. I can hear you – “Not My Child”.

How do you know?

You work every day and you’ve taught your child right from wrong. They would never steal a car, hold a person at gunpoint/knifepoint, or snatch their purse/wallet. Right?

You say, “my child is smart, comes from a two-parent family, we are not poor.” Those crimes only occur with/by… You fill-in the rest of this sentence with your thoughts or biases.

As a parent expert who has taught and studied adolescents, teens, and 20-somethings for the past 20 years, I can tell you this:

  • Teens love thrill and excitement
  • They are easily influenced by their peers and the world around them
  • Leaving them on their own for 3-4 hours every day (after school) without supervision is a problem

Join my Zoom Parent Masterclass on Thursday, October 21st where we will discuss teens: their wants, needs and love language. Admission is $25 until October 9th; $45 thereafter.

CLICK HERE to Register.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting coaching programs that help you through Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons, Fathers and Daughters and Fathers and their Sons.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Masterclass

October 2, 2021 at 12:47 pm Leave a comment

Give Them Something To Believe In

Life is funny, you leave one crisis, and move into a second or third one. 

This week I’m thinking about boys… yes, our sons. And the challenges some of them face growing up.

For the last several years, we have experienced a number of young men losing their life to gun violence. Violence of being shot by rivals and violence due to police shootings. Last year (2020), not only did we experience over 600,000 people who died from COVID-19, we also watched as the number of black boys and men who were shot and killed by police, increased.

Toward the end of 2020, many cities noticed a rash of crimes where people were being carjacked and robbed or killed. Many of these crimes were committed by young men, some as young as 11 or 12. It makes you wonder what kind of direction or guidance they are receiving at home?

I had firsthand knowledge of guidance for a young boy.

My little brother…

I think back to my brother and how he responded to my mom and dad’s divorce. He was young, about 11 years old and missed having Dad at home. He was angry and felt alone.

He started getting into trouble.

A lot. Getting into trouble in those days, meant being disrespectful, destroying somebody’s property, or stealing. Our dad wasn’t coming by for regular visits, but if my mother called about my brother, Dad would come and discipline him. 

My brother was so unhappy that he began trying to take his life. (Thank God he was unsuccessful.) He also began hanging out with the “bad boys” in the neighborhood.

My mother sold our house and moved to a different neighborhood.

Who can say what kind of stress these boys are undergoing at home?

  • It could be due to financial issues.
  • Maybe the stress is verbal or physical.
  • Your son could be dealing with depression.
  • Perhaps he is reacting to deaths of people he knows due to COVID-19, domestic or gun violence. If his family has gang affiliation and the violence is orchestrated by gang leaders, imagine how stressful that could be.

How do you help your son if he is facing any of these (or other issues)? What do you do if he’s going through male teen angst? Maybe he’s exhibiting disrespectful, aggressive, violent behavior or mood swings.

What happens if you can’t change neighborhoods?

Try these five things before giving up or seeking professional help:

  • Schedule Time With Your Son – talk frequently and spend regularly scheduled time with him and keep his schedule jam-packed with school, sports, clubs, time with friends, and after-school jobs.
  • Set a Sleep Routine it’s easier being a teen if he’s getting enough sleep.
  • Get Moving – the last thing a moody teen wants to do is get up and move, but it’s one of the best ways he can feel better.
  • Listen Without Lecturingresist the urge to lecture your son. Listen with an open mind.
  • Keep Your Cool take a deep breath, keep your cool and find a way to communicate without lashing out.

Find an honorable, trustworthy male mentor that he can talk to, when he can’t talk to you. Remember to model healthy ways to handle stress. Take good care yourself.

I help parents build the kind of communication and trust that allows parent-child relationships to grow and feel better through coaching and parent classes. Email me for more information: info@clynnwilliams.com 😘 

Thanks for reading my blog. Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @MsParentguru.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Coach, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

July 20, 2021 at 9:45 pm Leave a comment

Care Enough To Join Me

We had an event in my community yesterday and it had been a culmination of twice weekly activities over a six week period, that included young people from elementary through high school as well as adults.

We had a pretty decent turnout, with most parents attending with their child. The odd thing was that the parents of one of our teens did not attend. She said they were home cleaning house 🧼 🧽. I was really bummed out, for her. She had had some rough times during our weekly meetings with family issues but during the entire time, we never met her parents. 👁👁

It took me back to the days when my children were younger. We tried to attend everything they were involved in. Of course that wasn’t possible, but we tried. And maybe this was true for my teen’s parents. Maybe they attend every other event and just couldn’t with this one. Watching her during our project meetings I got a different impression. To me she felt lonely and alone.

So this is what I want to say to her parents: It is important to show up in your kid’s life as often as you can. Doesn’t matter if they are 5, 15 or 25 years old. Our kids love our support! Yes it’s easy to show up for the large events like graduations and milestone birthdays. But sometimes we have to be parents no matter how busy our days are and be available! That means we play games with our kids, we go for walks (yea put down the headphones, game controllers and phones) 😁

As the parental unit (one of my daughter’s favorite phrases), our kids won’t remember that we were trying to make a living and had to put food on the table that’s not the first thing that they will remember about us. What they may remember is that we sat on the stairs and talked with them about what the 2020 election means; they’ll remember that we drove to the lakefront and watched the sunset; that we talked into the night about good and bad decisions, that we watch their favorite Disney movie 10 times… in a row. They will remember playing Monopoly with you and how many properties you bought!

Your child will remember the times you spent doing stuff together!

I feel bad because my teen friend looks and feels lonely. It doesn’t feel like she has a good support system and I hope she has a stronger one in the future.

Oh and parents… try to be more mindful of the time your child really needs with you.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

clynnwilliams.com

October 10, 2020 at 6:51 pm Leave a comment

The Importance of Self-Care During a Pandemic…and Beyond

Guest blog by Kristen Fescoe, Resility Health

As we find ourselves living an uncertain and challenging time, self-care has never been so important. Before the outbreak of COVID-19, self-care was something many of us pushed to the back burner. There would always be time for it tomorrow. For most, tomorrow never came. Now, as we are being asked to slow down and change the way we live, it seems that tomorrow may be today.

There are plenty of benefits to creating a self-care routine. Feeling better about yourself, living a more present life and focusing on your own goals are all important examples. Self-care is one of the best ways to stave off the physical and emotional impact of stress and worry.

When you experience a stressor in your life, big or small, your brain and body react with the fight or flight reflex. Your brain releases chemical messengers into your bloodstream. Your pulse and blood pressure quicken. While this is great if there is a real threat to you, it can be damaging to your mental and physical health if you experience it for an extended period of time.

This is where self-care plays an important role. By taking a little time every day to focus on your emotional well-being, you can start to change the way you react to stress. No matter how badly we would like to, it’s really hard to eliminate stress from our lives. Especially now, during this difficult time. Stress is a constant in most of our lives.

What we can change is the way we react to stress.

Daily self-care is a mechanism to do this. Let’s say you decide that 3 times a day you will perform a self-check-in. So each morning, afternoon and evening you will spend 2-3 minutes checking in with yourself and thinking about how you feel both physically and emotionally.

During these few minutes, you will think about any pain or discomfort you have, anything that has been silently nagging at your attention, anything that might be impacting your mood. By just taking notice of it you actually can start to change how you react to it. If you were to do this every day for 3-4 weeks you will quickly find that you become much more aware of when your body is reacting to stress and you will even start to reduce your body’s automatic stress response.

There has never been a better time to begin a self-care regimen. Stress is at an all-time high. People are dealing with everything from loss of loved ones to extreme loneliness and even the exacerbation of psychological disorders. Life isn’t easy. Since you can’t do anything to remove stress from your life, there is something you can do to change its impact on you.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Parent Coach, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com


May 6, 2020 at 8:27 pm 1 comment

How Do You Manage Anger?

Dealing with anger and its repercussions can be very challenging. Being unaware of how to handle irritating and stressful situations may be a reason for many fits of anger and rage. Most people, except for young children and (possibly) teens, recognize their problem with uncontrollable anger.  Although there are many anger management activities which would enable them to better cope with confrontational situations, some people are unaware of these techniques and activities.

There are many anger management activities that parents and their children can practice or participate in when attempting to cope with daily feelings of anger.

One activity which is recommended for anger management is exercise. Exercise has been proven to have a positive impact on a person’s mood. Exercise helps an individual to decrease any negative feelings they might be experiencing. An effective anger management activity might be as simple as going for a walk or jog in the park. Visiting the gym to work out of taking part in their favorite sport may work well for an individual as an anger management activity. Taking a hike or spending a few hours in the beauty of nature would definitely allow a person to clear their head and release tension. Outdoor anger management activities can create an environment of serenity.

Anger management activities such as attending a support group, camp or retreat would help people who are experiencing difficulties controlling their anger. One positive aspect of attending anger management activities allows the person to see that their problem is not unique; that it is shared by plenty of other people. Being able to share with people in similar situations might be the key to anger management for some individuals. Sharing would likely provide hope through success stories. In anger management activities such as these, people are forced

to deal with their anger issues through various activities group sessions and one on one consults.

Anger management activities are recommended when dealing with children who are coping with anger or loss issues. A child is unlikely to respond well to group sessions and perhaps even become bored with one on one consultations. Finding activities which are interesting and even challenging may be a better alternative. Kids enjoy fun and games. Designing anger management games which are enjoyable yet beneficial would be so much more effective than forcing a child to sit down with an anger management counselor. Worksheets, coloring pages, individual games as well as interactive games would be accepted much better by children than a trip to the psychiatrist. When children are involved, it is essential to approach the problem carefully. Being overbearing will not go over well with kids. When considering anger management activities for kids, it is essential to be mindful that they are only children and the approach is important.

When considering anger management activities, choose ones which you find interesting and enjoyable. Sticking a person in an unfamiliar setting may create additional feelings of anger or isolation, neither of which is the intention of anger management activities. Finding an activity that works should be the key focus. I will be hosting a free parenting class on anger and grief on June 1, 2018 at Dyett High School through Parent University. Registration is highly recommended due to class size: dyettparentu.eventbrite.com

 

C. Lynn Williams

#MsParentguru & Founder of Finding Superwoman™

clynnwilliams.com

May 30, 2018 at 9:23 pm Leave a comment

Manners Matter

Have you ever seen something and wondered – ‘Did I just see that!’ 

I was driving on the expressway and traffic was really congested. In broad daylight a man pulled over to the side of the road and proceeded to pull out his genitals and use the bathroom! WHAT?!? Seriously!?! I thought what kind of home training did he have?

In another situation, a woman begins to talk on her phone. You can hear the voice on the other end of the phone because she has her caller on speakerphone. Why?

I met with one of my clients last week, at a public playroom for kids, since she had her kiddos with her. The playroom reminded me of when my kids were invited to places to play with each other while parents got to know each other. The biggest difference between then and now is that a few of the parents were on their phones while their child played.

What she did next got my attention. Before allowing her son to play with the other kids, she reminded him of the ‘house rules‘. The house rules were her expectations of his behavior. “Play nice.” “Hitting is not a way to resolve a problem.” Her little guy was only 4 1/2 years old, but he was being taught how to handle conflict and remain mannerable! She said that she noticed that when he and another child had conflict, he would hit. She wanted to teach him other ways to resolve conflict besides hitting (or taking what he wanted). Manners do matter, maybe not to adults who urinate on the side of expressways or when talking on speakerphone in public places. 

Manners are behaviors that are taught either by how you are raised or what you see at home. If kids are taught to be mannerable by adults who are mannerable, then that’s what they are. If the environment where you live, permits misbehavior like disrespect, littering, fighting, road rage, temper tantrums, things like that; then manners don’t matter to you.

But we live in a global society, where people from many cultures are expected to get along with each other. Manners matter because how we live our everyday lives spills over into how we treat each other and our neighbors. Respecting each other, protecting our environment and raising our children to do the same is what matters.

Interested in learning more about your family’s dynamics? Contact me – Ms. Parent Guru to receive information about my inspiring parenting relationship programs for Aging Parents, Mothers and Daughters, Mothers and their Sons or Fathers and Daughters.

Click Here to become a part of my parenting community.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru

Family Dynamics Strategist, Author & Speaker

www.clynnwilliams.com

May 30, 2017 at 1:41 pm Leave a comment

If You Are A Too Busy Working Mom…

Have you ever felt completely at your wits end because you had a project due at work or in your business, and your img_9908daughter needed you? I’ve been there and remember how difficult it was to make the choice to spend time with her. Yes I chose my daughter. Because there will ALWAYS be a project, a meeting, an event to attend.

Here’s the million dollar question! What’s the consequence if you don’t spend time when she needs (wants) you? Will she want to talk a week, month or year later? Will what was so important to her to share with you today, matter in six months (when you have more time)?

Go to my YouTube channel: MsParentGuru and check out my YouTube video blog: Click Here

If you are struggling to have meaningful conversations with your daughter and want help, let’s have a conversation about your next steps. Here’s a link to reach me. While you’re deciding if you really want to talk about that mother-daughter relationship, pick up a copy of my book, Raising Your Daughter.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentGuru

Connect with my parent community: www.clynnwilliams.com

November 10, 2016 at 1:32 pm Leave a comment

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