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Welcome back to episode #9
Before we dive into today’s episode I wanted to take a minute to say thank so much for reaching out and letting me know how valuable episodes #7 and 8 were for you and your daughter
It’s not always easy to talk about the tough stuff, especially right now, with so many teenagers
- trying to navigate the back-and-forth-to-school
- and keeping their spirits up even though they’re missing out on so many important rites of passage
The upside is there’s definitely some solace in knowing that you’re not alone.
And MORE IMPORTANTLY, that there are simple, doable things that your daughter CAN DO, right now to build up and nurture her resilience.
Okay, on that note, let’s get on with today’s conversation because I want to give your daughter the tools, she needs to confidently make a choice, and stick to it.
We all struggle with what to do sometimes, but INDECISION can become an epidemic in the teenage years because there’s a lot at stake.
For the sake of time, I’m going to focus on the decision-making process around your daughter’s social commitments because, chances are, there’s been a time or two when you’ve had an interaction with your daughter that looks something like you asking …
“why don’t you stop scrolling through your phone and make some plans with your friends?
And then you either hear crickets, catch a sideways glance, or hear a muttered, “uh, I don’t know.”
This type situation can
- make the hairs of even the most patient parent stand on end
- or instantly cause an argument between you and your daughter
because it’s hard for you to see her sit idle, isolate herself or struggle emotionally.
And, quite frankly, when you see that her phone is semi-permanently-attached to the palm of her hand it seems like a simple task to just ask her to make some plans…right?
Or is it?
All kidding aside, there’s a hard part to this scenario and I what to share what I’ve learned, because I think it’s important for you to know that “I don’t know” IS a real response.
And it can mean many, many things, depending on
- if your daughter has been hurt by her friends in the past
- or if her tribe is in the midst of some tribal unrest
And if that’s the case, your question, that, no doubt is coming from a loving place, but can feel pretty loaded to her.
And here’s why …
Her mumbled “I don’t know” may represent
- I don’t know how things are going to turn out and I don’t know if I can handle another disappointing, scary or hurtful situation
- or she just flat out doesn’t know HOW to handle the situation
So even though your daughter really wants that happy, connected feeling, taking a risk – socially and emotionally right now – may feel like too much.
But the good news is, she CAN definitely learn to move through her “I don’t know” and confidently make a decision, no matter how difficult her situation may be.
First, I’d like to encourage her to try the 3 Practical Approaches we talked about in Episode #5 How to Turn Your Daughter’s Fears into Opportunities to Grow
Because even though
- fear and uncertainty can make her feel wobbly
- or she knows that she can’t really control the outcome – even though she reeaalllly wants to
it’s possible for her to use the 3 approaches to ditch her fears and bring her head and heart into alignment and bust through the walls of indecision.
One of the best ways to bust through the walls of indecision and feel confident about her decisions is to equip your daughter with what I call, the Choice Tool.
The Choice Tool is going to help your daughter get really clear about
- what her intentions are
- what she wants
- and what she needs
so, she can make a decision that feels good to her.
The Choice Tool is essentially 3 Key Questions:
- How important this decision is to you?
- Who are you making this decision for?
- What will you do if things go exactly as planned OR don’t quite go the way you’d hoped they would?
With question #1
I want her to prioritize her decision by asking … How important is this decision to me?
And then she can scale the importance from 1 (kinda, sorta important) to 10 (really darn important to me).
Because if the decision isn’t a big deal, it’s important for her to recognize that there’s minimal risk and no need to overthink it.
On the flip side, if her decision is really darn important, it’s crucial for her to be honest and clear with herself on the next two questions.
Who are you making this decision for?
If this decision is truly FOR and ABOUT you, then the cool part is, YOU get to CONTROL how to respond or react to your decision.
What will you do if things DON’T go exactly as planned?
Have a plan in place – literally decide ahead of time …
- Who can you talk to that’ll support you?
- And who can help you keep a clear perspective
And lovingly remind yourself that you’re growing up and part of growing up is learning- leaning what you want and what you don’t want.
So please allow those moments in time to be your teacher.
Lastly, what if things DO go just as you hoped they would?
Ahh, revel in the courage you tapped in to and seriously, celebrate the fact that you put one foot in front of the other and took a risk.
And make your moment a happy, pride-filled memory.
One of the coolest parts of sharing this with you is I’VE SEEN THIS APPROACH WORK.
So seriously, please don’t let indecision
- lead your daughter astray
- and confuse her into thinking she’s lost all control.
Because that’s where she’ll get tripped up.
Instead, invite her to try The Choice Tool by reflecting on the 3 Key Questions.
And, if you’re just not sure how to handle your daughter’s indecision, I can help.
Go ahead and grab a complimentary Discovery Session.
Or, I’m now offering a 90 Minute Strategy Session.
So, we can get your daughter’s confident decision-making skills up and running.
You can find all those links on my website, cultivatingresilientteens.com or in the show notes.
And be sure to listen in next week because we’re going to offer you a few really important tips that’ll help your daughter stay focused in a world full of distractions.
Because here’s the thing … growing up with a phone in one hand and clicking through multiple tabs with another is fooling so many teenagers into thinking they have attention deficit disorder.
When, in reality, they’re dealing with the ramifications associated with CPA – continuous partial attention.
Okay, more on that next week.
I look forward to connecting with you soon 😊
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