Understanding Teenagers Thinking – 5 Solid Steps

1) Letting go

Letting go is the first step. By letting go of your normal way of thinking. Get real of the fact that your teens are in transition to becoming a young adult and they are changing their taste in clothes, friends, food, hairstyle, the way they talk, they might also distance themselves from you. Not taking it personally is a great step forward.

2) Research

You might want to do some research, observe what other teens wear, watch and play. If your children do not want to talk to you, another strategy is to talk to their friends. By asking them some questions to find out what is their thinking, their interests and their opinions about what is going on in their lives.

One conversation with a teenager of 15 tells me that we really need to educate them with some reality. This young man said when he finished his Secondary four (9th grade) he is going to stop schooling, work in MacDonalds and buy a Housing Development Board's apartment that is subsidized by the government.

3) Educate

I asked him, "Do you know how much does it cost?" He said, "no". I shared with him that the smallest public apartment that he can buy cost about S$180,000.00; And when I asked him, "How can you purchase it with $5.00 an hour working in a fast food joint? How many years do you think you need to work to afford that apartment?

4) Listening

He answered confidently, "I can buy it with my father's Central Provident Fund (CPF)." It's like a kind of pension scheme. I was shocked and asked him what is the father doing as a profession and he said he is a taxi driver. I sounded him out that the CPF's policy has been changing and whether he is aware that a good portion of his father's CPF cannot be taken out and it's meant for his retirement. I suggested that he do some research and discuss with his father about his plan.

5) Respect

The point I am making is, by talking with your children's friends also means you respect and listens to them. If your teenager does not make time to talk to you or is not interested in this kind of conversation; Your teenager will also learn something out of your dialogue with his friends. This seems to be an easy strategy.

To shift the mindset of people to develop self-leadership in life through self-love. To connect parents and teens to inspire each other to live life purposefully.

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