Teenagers are impulsive creatures by nature and often don’t invest enough time in considering a situation and weighing up the available range of options before making their decision to act. Being a teen can be hard, so can being the parent of one.
Sometimes your teen will make a wrong decision and this is how life’s hard lessons are learnt. We can just hope that mistakes are not serious, but as we know they can be, but live and learn is a valuable and valid way of growing. There are times too where they make good choices, but with no real understanding of the thought processes that led them to the better decisions and, therefore more desirable outcomes, and so it’s a bit like fingers crossed and then phew, we can exhale in relief!
Working with teens on a daily basis (yes, and with my own at home) has got me to thinking that a simple rule of thumb for decision making is the way to go. A busy teen brain – full of thoughts about minecraft or makeup – needs it to be kept simple and importantly useable because sitting and taking time to weigh up options is just not cool.
I teach the teens I work with, and my own, that the best (ie simplest) way to make a quick decision is to imagine if the proposed event was being recorded by a journalist for front page coverage in the next day’s paper. If they’d be happy to have the world read about their actions or words (Grandma reads the paper you know, as do teachers, neighbours, parents of friends etc) then go for it! If not, walk away. Immediately. It’s just not worth it.
It’s easy. It’s memorable. It’s quick and it works well. Of course, it can apply equally to grown ups too 😉
Do you have a quick and easy way of making a snap decision for yourself that could be shared?
* I first posted this at www.familysurvivalcoach.com