We can all remember our first day of school, emotions everywhere. It was a day full of excitement and anxiety and for some of us of one outweighed the other. The feeling of butterflies in your stomach and not knowing what the day will bring can be scary and when you are not prepared to handle this “new thing” it can be overwhelming. Being prepared to enter into a new school year is vital to our teens’ success in school; so we must equip them with the tools needed to handle all that they will encounter, easing the anxiety ultimately eliminating it all together.
At school our teens are being bombarded with peer pressure, wanting to be liked, bullies and so many other things we aren’t even privy to and it is our responsibility to show them how to combat these on a daily basis. It would be easier if we could get rid of these things and protect our teens from all danger and craziness but we can’t; however we can make them to null affect.
When our children are going through their teen years a lot is happening to their bodies inside and out. These changes affect them all in different ways and cause them to have anxieties, because as most of us they want to fit in too. They want to be accepted just like we wanted when we were in school. Due to our adult lives we seem to forget what we went through at their age and act as if these feelings are nonexistence when they are as real to them as they were to us. Remembering this gives us a chance to relate to them on another level by sharing with them how we handled it or would have liked to handle it.
Being older I realized that what others think of us is not what counts it’s what we think of ourselves that really matters. But when you are a teenager you don’t know that, all you know is that you may not be liked by your peers new and old and it doesn’t feel good and it is our duty to let them know this. We cannot assume they know this when in fact they don’t. Theses anxieties make it hard to want to enter into school but with our help they can overcome them. The root of anxiety is always lack of self acceptance causing us to want it from others and once we show our teens that they are treated the way they think of themselves they will be ok. As teenagers grow the brain grows into its adulthood stage causing the thoughts to change and as the thoughts change so does behavior and feelings but as parents we have to protect their minds for a lack of better terms.
It is our job to put positive words and thoughts into them; this is the time we teach them how to handle life. Our teens are like brand new computers that need data inputted on their hard drives. Every day we must scan them for viruses and malicious spyware by talking to them and seeing what’s going on on the inside of them. You’re right, they are not always going to want to talk to YOU but that’s ok you keep talking and asking questions even when things seem good. Stay in the loop because it’s the only way you are going to be able to make sure they are ok. We have to pay attention to the words that come out of their mouths because that’s what’s really going to show you where they are right now. What they say is what they think and as long as we have their thinking right they will be right!
Jeanelle Lanham is a mom of two teenage boys, a wife to a wonderful man, as well as a Veteran of the Gulf War. In addition to working on her Doctorate in Teen & Family Counseling Jeanelle Lanham is the Founder and CEO of the Teen Nonprofit Hodge Podge TC, a Published Author, Licensed Yoga Practitioner, Minister, and Certified Teen & Family Life Coach. Jeanelle has over fifteen years experience in Teen and Family counseling, making a mark in the lives of teens all over the world that can not be erased. Along with counseling Teens & their Families Jeanelle counsels reality show celebrities. Jeanelle has a book in print The Code – that she co-wrote with the experts of the movies The Compass and The Secret. She continues to write books that help teens and their parents live successful lives.