If you are in a vicious cycle of any kind, the only way to break that cycle is to choose one point at which you make a different choice.
We tell our teen to take a shower.
He says ok in a few minutes.
Then he doesn’t do it.
You see him sitting there “wasting time” and you’re done!
He explodes more.
You feel like crap.
He feels like crap.
You both drown a little deeper in the ocean of shame.
You’re both also equally adamant that the other is wrong.
The crack deepens.
The disconnect grows.
The cycle continues on repeat.
How to break the pattern
Step 1: Lens Shift- he’s really feeling rejected and like he’s not worthy of love and acceptance. I’ll show him he is regardless of his behavior.
Step 2: Instead of telling him what to do. We ask a question “beta what’s your plans for a shower?” Even if we get no answer. We’ve planted a seed gently.
Step 3: Trust. Trust. Trust. Keep repeating 1 and 2 and trust that he will do it. He WILL shower eventually and bingo. When he does...
Step 4: Acknowledge- I noticed you showered today without me even bringing it up. That was very helpful for me. Thank you.
Once enough connection is built, the teen starts to come back to real life and showing us what an amazing person he or she is.
Trusting that teens too, are kids, and poor behaviors merely indicate feelings of worthlessness will allow us to have the lens shift.
We can do hard things, friends! You got this.
For more on teens, join me for my live workshop this weekend called Saving Our Teens. Sign up here https://www.maryammunir.com/event-details/saving-our-teens