Acquiring control over our emotions and giving ourselves a moment to think before acting is a long process that practically never ends and that we have been learning since we were children (some with more success than others). Taking into account the amount of changes that occur during adolescence, parents have the responsibility to help a teenage son manage his emotions. We give you some keys to keep in mind.
The truth is that when it comes to working on emotions with young children, the process is much easier, because we are with them most of the time and because we have much more control over all the things that happen around them.
But when our children become teenagers, they begin to experience many situations for the first time: they begin to learn to drive a car, to do paperwork by themselves, or even to have a first job. The fact is that more and more they will be at their own pace and they will not have us around to pave the way. It is true that a lot they will have to learn it for themselves, but there are several things we can do to help them.
Here are some tips to help our teens manage their emotions:
1. Help him reflect
It is important to have a close emotional bond and open communication with our son, which allows him to know that he can get closer to us. Sometimes you just wait to be heard, you don't necessarily want or need us to tell you how bad it was or to fill you with ideas about what to do. He that they feel listened to and accompanied by us without being invasive it's very valuable; We can gently help them to self-reflect on any bad reaction they may have had and make them find the way to solve it themselves.
Son: I had an argument with my Physics Teacher and I dropped out of his class.
Dad: How did that make you feel? / Do you think you could have handled things better?
When they have to perform an important task or have a family event already agreed it is important to give them reminders and help them keep it in mind writing it down in a calendar that they have in view: delivery of projects, doctor's appointment, job interview, etc.
In this way we prevent them from feeling anxious or having a moment of crisis for having overlooked something important.
- Friday I need you to come home early from school because your doctor's appointment is at 4:00 pm.
- Don't forget to have the documents you need ready for your re-enrollment process at the school for Wednesday.
- Remember that on the weekend we go out, please do not make commitments.
3. Help him recognize and talk about his emotions
Helping our children to recognize how they are feeling in certain situations is a good way to help them have more control over their reactions. We must be attentive to those signs that something is disturbing them:
- That they canceled the project you were participating in surely made you feel frustrated. Do you want to talk about that?
- That your friend didn't want to join you must have been a bit disappointing? How did you feel?
4. Teach him not to take things personally
This is great advice for parents, teens, and kids. Many of the things that make us angry or disappointed have not been done expressly to harm us, but many times we perceive it that way and that generates much more emotional reactions in us. On the contrary, it is different if we understand that, although it was wrong and we could have been harmed, they did not carry the specific intention of hurting us.
Let's teach our children to not taking everything that happens around personally; they will undoubtedly become much more objective and will be able to control their emotions better.
5. Lead by example
It is impossible for us to try teach our teenage son to control his impulses if you see us shouting curses when someone commits a traffic fault or when our computer does not work properly.
It is essential to evaluate the way in which we handle our emotions and work on it, to give them a good role model.
6. Be grateful and reinforce their self-control
When we observe that our son managed to control his emotions properly, let us not hesitate to let him know. This will help you to see yourself as someone who can control yourself and will reinforce your reactions next time.
- Thank you for having controlled yourself and not falling for the practical jokes of your cousin, sometimes it can be very heavy.
- I know you would rather be in your swimming class, but this event is special to me; Thanks for joining me.
The path to self-control is permanent. If it is sometimes difficult for us as adults, we must be clear that a teenager is even more challenging. Let's help them walk the path by staying close.
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