Parents are frequently in search of quick-fix solutions for what are often complex challenges with their teenagers. This is in hopes that they will magically resolve all the behavioural challenges they face when parenting their teen. Parents seek advice from friends, families, therapists, influencers, and bloggers on the “what to do when…” hoping to discover that one technique, that singular behaviour management strategy that will completely transform their circumstances. The truth is that there is no quick fix. It took me awhile to fully comprehend this truth as I handed out solutions and advice like candy early in my coaching career. I bought into the fast food, quick-fix mentality many parents seek. Sometimes, my advice actually worked! Most of the time, however, the results were short-lived.
I have learned, however, that there is a Silver Bullet that all parents have at their disposal. In actuality, it is a strategy that, for many parents, may seem counterintuitive. Here it is – work harder on yourself than on your teenager. Focus your time and energy on the only thing you truly have power and control over…YOU. Rather than going down the rabbit hole of figuring out how to “fix” your teenager, ask yourself this question, “How can I become a more effective parent for my teen?” I understand that this isn’t exciting, requires significant effort, and that the change won’t happen overnight. But it is the key…the Silver Bullet to positively altering your relationship with your teenager.