Tips for Parents
The only way any parent, family, or individual adolescent can reach their potential is through direct, focused, and correct total action based on true spiritual principles that cover the holistic spectrum of life.
Your teenager needs you NOW!
- It is harder to raise a teenager today than at any period in the history of our country.
- There is an epidemic of teenagers who currently have acute social and emotional problems.
- Teenagers today have far more negative influences, distractions, and complications to deal with than any previous generation of teenagers.
The best course of action that can be taken by parents when their teenager is struggling or is out of control, is exactly the same in theme (though different in particulars) as reaching one’s potential; it must be direct, focused, and correct total action that is based on true spiritual principles.
Start at the top of the mountain, not in the middle or at the bottom. All too often parents, through panic, laziness, or ignorance fail to step back and really see what is ultimately best. Anytime you begin with any quick fix, or halfway measure, you are guaranteeing yourself a lot more frustration, and wasted time, along with that of your child’s in the long run.
This puts the power of positive attraction and compelling force to work against your child’s stubbornness, self-deception, anger etc. It removes all his excuses and opportunity to blame you for not providing what was really needed.
Only work backwards from the opportunity for your child to engage in a program of total transformation if he or she rejects it.
The Greatest Need
The greatest need for teenagers is to develop a holistic lifestyle that will produce mental, physical, spiritual, social, and creative health and fitness.
The Greatest Message
The greatest message that any teenager can have is the message of abundant life. To know that God has a unique plan of life specifically for him or her that will produce everything their heart really wants and will produce overflowing happiness and well-being throughout the course of their life on this earth, and eternal life to follow is to have the greatest dream laid out in front of them. This dynamic way of living is called the abundant life and is truly living the dream because both the process and the lifestyle and the rewards are equally enjoyable and glorious.
The Greatest Challenge
The greatest challenge that any young person can receive is to enter into the process of total transformation, holistic development, and growth toward reaching their potential in the abundant life. That means learning to live correctly and intentionally in all core areas of life -mental, physical, spiritual, social, and creative – establishing patterns that are consistent with correct living. All young people should realize that until they enter into the abundant life, they are not really living on the cutting edge, nor should they expect to have consistent well-being in their life, since this world always takes more than it gives and therefore the individual who is outside of the abundant life has a trajectory that slopes downward.
The Greatest Opportunity
The greatest opportunity that any young person can have is to work with a team that can mentor, teach, coach, and structure him or her according to transformative living and abundant life. This means expertly and passionately. And this is precisely why I created my programs and offer them to young people across the country.
Exposing their child to The Greatest Message, holding in front of them The Greatest Challenge, setting an example of the abundant life in their (the parents) own way, and providing The Greatest Opportunity for proper training is the best a parent can do for a child in terms of setting them up for a happy successful life. (It goes without saying that a parent should provide the basic physical, mental, and moral foundation of life.)
The Efficiency Plan
All too often parents, through panic, laziness or ignorance fail to step back and really aggressively pursue what is best for their child.
Principles of efficiency when dealing with teenagers:
- Pursue the best first. By starting with the best you will be guaranteed the best results and you won’t need to enter into the realms of chaos, waste, and stupidity that will waste enormous amounts of time. Raising teenagers is costly and time consuming under the best of circumstances; the difference between putting time, effort, and resources in the right place (according to true spiritual principles and the wrong place (going against true spiritual principles) is the difference between a fruitful labor of love and a fruitless labor of misery.
- Go on offense rather than being on defense. Many parents have become almost addicted to being in a crisis management mode; hence they put forth tremendous amounts of energy but never get in control of things or establish real victory for their kids.
- Prepare yourself by understanding that it is going to take time, effort, and resources to do things correctly, will allow you to create the right mindset to invest what is necessary to do what is necessary.
Once the best is offered to your teenager, you will not have to retrace your steps over ineffectual protocol (medication, purely secular counseling etc.) that at its best could never produce true transformation. By offering the best first (see principle #1) you take away any excuses your teens have against you.
The most powerful and efficient plan that a parent can do with a problematic teen:
- Have tremendous hope and expectation regardless of the current situation; God is in the business of building greatness in individuals and families.
- Evaluate, as accurately as possible, where you are and how you got there. (what was the total interaction on both our part and your teens that created the present condition (see principle #7).
- Ask yourself the question that if you got a choice to parent all over again, what would you do differently from when your teenager(s) was little.
- Understand what the abundant life/total transformation message is, and gain vision for its implementation and impact on your teenager’s life.
- Expose your teenager to the concepts of abundant life and total transformation (which constitute the ultimate message and challenge that they can possibly get at this point in their life) and provide the opportunity for them to enter in.
- Once your child is exposed to the best, do not go backwards in your own mind and understanding, keep that reality fresh in front of them and especially don’t allow your child to see or hear you waiver in any way from that which was given to them.
- Once the abundant life message is given, it is vitally important to encourage your teen in it, and always keep it alive and in front of them as their very best option.
- If your teen desires to move forward with transformation, then strongly support them in it by encouraging them to follow through with the program.
- Once a breakthrough occurs, that breakthrough is your new standard and beginning point. Anything that falls beneath that standard must be rejected as inferior, and viewed as a waste of time.
- If your teen temporarily rejects the message of transformation and the plan to achieve it, you must still keep the opportunity constant while skillfully employing plan B (whatever that backup plan may be in each situation). However even when your teen seems stubborn and intractable, always for your son or daughter to open up to the opportunity to transform their life. Once the message is given to them it will act as a seed that may spring at a later time in the future.