How Fries and a Movie Helped My Relationship with My Teen

Have you ever noticed when you loosen up control and allow for a little more spontaneity and play, that things go better? Well, I have.😊
Lately, my relationship with my teen has been prickly… him being impatient and snarky and me being demanding (in his eyes) and unhappy with his tone. Recently, he had a day off of school. I laid in bed that morning meditating, wanting the day to go well. I visualized him smiling, us laughing together and enjoying each other’s company. 

I set an intention that morning to have a good day with him, to enjoy him. Then I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.
At breakfast, I told him that I would like to spend the day together and told him what I had planned. Of course, I planned only things that I thought he would like: Chick-fil-A (He loves a plate of trans fats) and a Mark Wahlberg movie (He likes slapstick, teen boy humor). I also told him that if he would rather hang out with his friends, that would be totally fine. His choice. Much to my surprise and delight, he chose to hang with his mom! Or he chose junk food. Either way, it was a win for team parent!
I decided to ease up on my love of crossing things off my never-ending to-do list and choose to “play hooky” with my kid. Now, for some of you, this is no-brainer…to do list vs. play. Hands down, you would trash the list and run out the door toward something fun. In my family growing up, being productive and getting things done was valued over play. I didn’t have role models of adults playing. So, my teen is my teacher on how to play. My job is to loosen my grip on the “shoulds” and embrace the “why the hell nots”. I can thank my teen for helping me to play and enjoy life even more!
P.S. We had a great day! Don’t tell him, but I like Chick-Fil-A just as much as he does.

How to Listen to Get Your Teen to Talk

Sometimes it's hard to get our teens to open up to us. In this video, I will give some great tips on what blocks us from connecting and how to improve our listening skills to allow our teens to feel heard and open up more.
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Barb Steinberg, LMSW is a teen life coach and workshop facilitator who transforms the lives of adolescent girls and the adults who care about them through practical strategies, insight, compassion and humor. 

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