The passage of time is a remarkable thing to ponder. We are approaching the end of another academic year, punctuated by proms, graduations, celebrations, and excitement for the change of schedules that summer offers. From the adult perspective we have a lens that offers a historical perspective with a catalog full of captured meaningful moments. There is a different experience of the passage of time from the perspective of our teens. While we might lean toward the tendency to slow things down, they often tend to drive full speed ahead to each next adventure. The challenge is to find a shared rhythm and process for navigating. The research helps us to trust our intuition with providing evidence for what really is important.
First, connection. As our teens pull away from us, we must be creative in maintaining “ a hold on the rein”. I often describe this as being elastic. Having open communication about expectations helps everyone know just where the boundaries are. Boundaries with love are like oxygen.
Second, nurturing resilience. The step from high school to next chapter can be both exhilarating and overwhelming. Summer allows for time to reinforce the skills for sage decision making, anticipating consequences, planning, thinking things through, being able to handle adversity and life’s inevitable ups and downs. The frontal lobe remains in a state of construction through the early 20’s, so as parents we must continue serving as “external frontal lobe coaches”, helping to create dialog to enable the process to grow and strengthen. By doing so we increase resiliency and reduce risk.
Third, life style awareness. It is critical to help our teens understand the importance of sleep, nutrition, breath work/meditation, exercise, time management, and the healthy “fun factor”.
As they approach the launching pad for their next step”
Breathe and believe
Believe and breathe
Be (breathe) in the here and now.
Our teens are a wonder to behold and embrace.