Teaching the Youth to Be Community-Oriented
A lot of parents could not even get their kids to clean up their rooms, so it’s impossible to make teenagers to their computers and take on an “impossible” feat, right? Maybe not. There are approaches to inspire them to go out of their self zones and develop concern for the world around them.
As a parent, these steps can help you shape your teens into responsible and community-loving adults one day:
1. Give them autonomy.
How do you think would it feel if someone were to breathe down your neck each and every time you move? That’s exactly how it is for most teenagers. Adults usually get rather defensive when this point is mentioned, saying their kids must first act more responsibly before they will be given autonomy. However, it’s the opposite that is actually true: how are young people to act more responsibly if they never get the chance? If anything, psychological research has uncovered that as you trust someone more, he is more likely to act the way you want him to.
2.Show real empathy.
Empathy is beyond being a good listener or putting yourself in the other’s shoes.” It’s feeling the feelings of others. If your kid’s pet dog died, for example, empathizing is not saying, “I know how it feels.” Empathy is grieving together. If your teen is scared of looking “uncool” when volunteering, it shouldn’t be simply accepted as “teens being teens.” Empathy entails decisive action, like exploring ideas on how to make volunteering cool.
3. Be a good example.
Kids have never been superb at listening to their parents, but they have always imitated them. And there’s a biological explanation for that. Ever heard about mirror neurons and their impact on group behavior? Here’s the bottom line: don’t expect your teens to do what you personally wouldn’t.
4. Appreciate their efforts.
Feeling like you don’t see them is a sure way to kill their motivation. After all, why pitch in when you feel like nothing’s changed? This is why it’s vital to express to them that their work is making a significant difference. And you need to say it to them individually, not as a group.
5. Give them a meaningful purpose.
Why do these teens have to do all these things? Is it to make their parents happy? Is it to get a chance to be close to someone they like? To get some kind of points from their teacher? All of these are poor motivation. Tell them how the youth’s service can matter to the general good of your community, and what’s at stake if they don’t show up. This is good motivation because a purpose in life is one of the most crucial factors of psychological as well as physical health. Proof is retiree volunteers living longer and less likely to be depressed than their stay-home counterparts.
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