Life Coach For Teens

Do you want the best for your child?

Do you want to see your child succeed in life?

Hi.

My name is Sam Miller and for the past 20 years I have been helping teenagers like yours become healthy, happy, and responsible young adults.

teen life coach

As a teen life coach, I help can help your child:

  • Get focused
  • Do better in school
  • Build more confidence
  • Find their career path
  • Make better choices
  • Become more responsible
  • Learn to communicate
  • Discover their passion and purpose
  • + more

Whether your child is a “good kid” who just needs some help, or a “troubled teen” who has lost their way and needs some guidance, I can help.

Note: If your child is exuding negative emotional issues or poor behavior such as being defiant, disrespectful, moody, angry, argumentative, lying, or rebellious, please visit my teen counseling services.

TESTIMONIAL

life coach for teensBefore speaking with Sam my son was having a hard time in school and had lost interest in life. His confidence was at an all time low and I could see he was getting depressed and making poor decisions.

After working with Sam I started to notice an immediate change in my sons mood and his behavior started to improve. I no longer had to drag my son out of bed and started to see that he was becoming more responsible and doing better in school. He also helped me learn how to communicate more effectively and now my son actually listens to me. For anyone needing life coaching for their teenager I would highly recommend speaking with Sam.

– Jan

MY PHILOSOPHY

When it comes to coaching teenagers so that they will want to do better in school, make good decisions, become more responsible, etc., my philosophy comes down to two core ideas:

A. Teaching them to become self-motivated

B. Helping them find their purpose & meaning to life

A. Motivation

The first step in helping your child become a responsible young adult is to teach them how to become self-motivated.

When they are children, they rely on you the parent to be the driving force behind their life. But as they mature, they are going to need to learn how to become self-motivated so that they are now the driving force behind their life.

This is why many parents struggle with getting their kids to do their homework, clean their room, brush their teeth, and do all the things they need to do to become responsible and independent.

Because they are not self-motivated.

B. Purpose & Meaning

The second step in helping your child become a responsible young adult is to teach them how to find purpose and meaning in their life.

Because you have been the driving force in their life (up until now), your child has not had a reason as to “why” they should behave more responsibly.

So many parents struggle to get their kids to do the things they need to do and it’s because most kids don’t have a good reason as to “why” they should. They don’t see what’s in it for them.

However, once they identify their purpose in life, now they have meaning which will be the driving force (instead of you) as to “why” they will do their homework, clean their room, be more focused, and make better choices.

To summarize…

Your child is not lazy or unmotivated.

Just tell them that you are going to take them to the amusement park or out shopping and they will move at lightning speed.

The reason why most teenagers “look” lazy or unmotivated is because they have not associated all the things you want for them as a benefit from their perspective.

Once they make the connection, you will see your child become more focused and driven without you having to drag them every step of the way.

So if you want to…

Help your child become more driven, responsible, confident, and focused so that they make good decisions and become a healthy, happy, and successful young adult,

I can help.

HOW THIS WORKS

Step 1 – Contact me (at the bottom of this page) and schedule your free 20-minute consultation

Step 2 – After your free consult, if we determine that I would be a good fit then we will schedule your 90-minute intake session ($260).

During the “intake session” is where I will examine everything that is happening with your situation and then send you a written outline of what I think needs to be done to help you and your child.

Step 3 – After the intake session, if you agree with my suggestions then we can schedule our weekly 45-minute sessions (4 session packages run $515).

FAQ

1. Why should I choose you as our life coach?

Because…

I have been working with teenagers for 20 years and know how to help them become self-motivated so that they will begin doing all the things they need to be doing without you having to nag them.

However…

The best way to answer that is after your free consultation. During this call you can determine whether or not I am a good fit.

2. How much does this cost?

The initial 20-minute consult is free.

The first 90-minute intake session with written outline costs $260

Four weekly 45-minute session packages costs $515

*You will only purchase the four weekly sessions if you agree with my assessment after the intake session

3. How are payments handled?

Credit card through PayPal.

4. Do you accept insurance?

No.

5. How are sessions held?

Phone or Skype voice call only. No video chatting.

6. Do you offer in person sessions?

No.

For two good reasons:

A. Your child prefers speaking with me through phone or Skype.

B. Phone sessions makes it easier for us to connect allowing you and your child to speak with me from the comfort of your home, office, car, etc.

7. What happens if my teenager does not want to talk to you?

A. Put them on the phone and let them listen to me. I will do all the talking. 80% of the time they open up because I know what to say to them.

B. If they fall in the 20% and still don’t want to talk, then I can at least coach you on how to deal with them.

8. How long does it take to see results?

This can vary depending on your circumstances.

However, I guarantee after our first session you will feel much better knowing that things are moving in the right direction.

9. What’s the next step?

To inquire about a free consultation, fill out the contact form below. If you do not hear back from me within two business days (Mon – Fri), please feel free to email me again.

Teen Therapy Services

Does your teenager need therapy?

Hi.

My name is Sam Miller and for the last 20 years I have been helping parents just like you address the many challenges of adolescents.

teen therapy

As a teen therapist, I have worked with many troubled youth with their issues including:

– Abusive behavior (acting emotionally or verbally abusive towards you or others)

– ADD or ADHD (having a hard time focusing at school)

– Angry (constantly angry and emotionally unstable)

– Anxiety (stressed out or having anxiety attacks)

– Arguing (talking back and being argumentative)

– Depression (feeling low, lost, sad, withdrawn, or suicidal)

– Defiant & Disrespectful (rebellious and no longer listens to you)

– Low self esteem (lack confidence and low self worth)

– Lying (being manipulative and dishonest)

– Mood swings (dealing with lots of ups and downs)

– Out of control (behaving irresponsibly and making poor choices)

– Run away (have run away from home)

– School (doing poorly in school and apathetic)

– Technology & Video Game Addiction (are spending too much time on their phone or computer)

– Unmotivated (behaving very lazy or irresponsible)

And much more.

TESTIMONIAL

teen therapistBefore speaking with Sam things in our home began to spin out of control. My 14 year old son was becoming very moody and depressed and started to become abusive with me. He was doing poorly in school, constantly lying, and spent too much time playing video games. We tried putting him on medications but nothing seemed to work.

After my son began to talk to Sam I noticed small changes in his behavior and how he was speaking with me. Little by little I could see that his outlook on life was changing and his behavior was improving. Sam also helped me understand how to be a better mother especially since the father was not around. If you need help with your teenager I highly recommend working with Sam.

– Ariel

MY PHILOSOPHY

Whatever issues you are facing right now, they most likely stem from one of these root causes:

1. Unresolved Emotional Issues

Whether your teen is angry, sad, frustrated, confused, or moody, when he or she has unresolved emotional issues they will be the driving cause of poor behaviors such as being defiant, disrespectful, disobedient, rebellious, depressed, apathetic, argumentative, aggressive, antisocial, and so on. This is where your child can become a “troubled teen” and “out of control”.

2. Loss of Respect

At some point in your relationship, your child has lost respect for you and no longer listens to you. This is why many teenagers start “talking back”, “lying”, are “ungrateful”, become “hateful”, and are constantly fighting with you.

3. Poor Habits & Lack Of Discipline

If your child becomes lazy, unmotivated, and irresponsible, it is because they have established a “rhythm” of poor behavior where they have formed bad habits and lack discipline.

4. Purpose & Meaning

One of the main causes of why so many teenagers exude poor behavior is because they lack purpose and meaning in their life. Without it, they will continue to focus their energy on “destructive” behavior rather than “constructive” behavior.

Here’s the deal…

Your teenager is going through their “formative years” right now which is going to have a profound impact on the rest of their life.

How you choose to help him or her now will determine their ability to become a healthy, happy, and responsible adult.

However…

Because you have lost your ability to communicate with them means they are no longer listening to you.

This is where I can help.

As your teen therapist not only can I help your child address their issues, but I can also help you rebuild your relationship with them so that they will want to talk to you when things become difficult again.

Get the help that you need now so that you can…

  • Regain control of the situation so that it does not get worse
  • Have the peace of mind knowing that you are doing your best so that you don’t feel guilty
  • Feel confident knowing your child and the situation is getting better
  • Create a healthy and long lasting relationship with your child

HOW THIS WORKS

Step 1 – Contact me (at the bottom of this page) and schedule your free 20-minute consultation

Step 2 – After your free consult, if we determine that I would be a good fit then we will schedule your 90-minute intake session ($260).

During the “intake session” is where I will examine everything that is happening with your situation and then send you a written outline of what I think needs to be done to help you and your child.

Step 3 – After the intake session, if you agree with my suggestions then we can schedule our weekly 45-minute sessions (4 session packages run $515).

FAQ

1. Why should I choose you as our therapist?

Because…

A. I have been doing this for 20 years and have seen every type of scenario you can imagine

B. I know how to connect with your teen where they will want to listen to me

C. I know how to help you regain control of the situation

However…

The best way to answer that is after your free consultation. During this call you can determine whether or not I am a good fit.

2. How much does this cost?

The initial 20-minute consult is free.

The first 90-minute intake session with written outline costs $260

Four weekly 45-minute session packages costs $515

*You will only purchase the four weekly sessions if you agree with my assessment after the intake session

3. How are payments handled?

Credit card through PayPal.

4. Do you accept insurance?

No.

5. How are sessions held?

Phone or Skype voice call only. No video chatting.

6. Do you offer in person sessions?

No.

For two good reasons:

A. Your teen probably does not want therapy and by having phone sessions, it makes them feel safer and less vulnerable increasing the chances of them speaking with me.

B. Phone sessions makes it easier for us to connect allowing you and your child to speak with me from the comfort of your home, office, car, etc.

7. What happens if my teenager does not want to talk to you?

A. Put them on the phone and let them listen to me. I will do all the talking. 80% of the time they open up because I know what to say to them.

B. If they fall in the 20% and still don’t want to talk, then I can at least coach you on how to deal with them.

8. How long does it take to see results?

This can vary depending on your circumstances.

However, I guarantee after our first session you will feel much better knowing that things are moving in the right direction.

9. What’s the next step?

To inquire about a free consultation, fill out the contact form below. If you do not hear back from me within two business days (Mon – Fri), please feel free to email me again.

Teen Counseling Services

Need counseling for your teenager?

Hi.

My name is Sam Miller and for the past 20 years I have been helping parents just like you address the many challenges of adolescents.

teen counseling
As a teen counselor, I have worked with many troubled youth with their issues including:

– Abusive behavior (acting emotionally or verbally abusive towards you or others)

– ADD or ADHD (having a hard time focusing at school)

– Angry (constantly angry and emotionally unstable)

– Anxiety (stressed out or having anxiety attacks)

– Arguing (talking back and being argumentative)

– Depression (feeling low, lost, sad, withdrawn, or suicidal)

– Defiant & Disrespectful (rebellious and no longer listens to you)

– Low self esteem (lack confidence and low self worth)

– Lying (being manipulative and dishonest)

– Mood swings (dealing with lots of ups and downs)

– Out of control (behaving irresponsibly and making poor choices)

– Run away (have run away from home)

– School (doing poorly in school and apathetic)

– Technology & Video Game Addiction (are spending too much time on their phone or computer)

– Unmotivated (behaving very lazy or irresponsible)

And much more.

TESTIMONIAL

Before speaking with Sam I was truly at a loss and had no idea how I was going to help my son (16 years old). He had been ditching school, caught doing drugs, depressed, and was hanging around with the wrong crowd. Not only was I worried, but I felt guilty that I failed him as parent. I know a lot of his problems had to do with not having his father around.

After my sessions with Sam I instantly felt this relief come over me where for the first time I knew that everything was going to be okay. Once he began talking to my boy, I could see that his attitude completely shifted. I am so grateful for the work he does. He is a true healer! – Linda Hale

MY PHILOSOPHY

Whatever issues you are facing right now, they most likely stem from one of these root causes:

1. Unresolved Emotional Issues

Whether your teen is angry, sad, frustrated, confused, or moody, when he or she has unresolved emotional issues they will be the driving cause of poor behaviors such as being defiant, disrespectful, disobedient, rebellious, depressed, apathetic, argumentative, aggressive, antisocial, and so on. This is where your child can become a “troubled teen” and “out of control”.

2. Loss of Respect

At some point in your relationship, your child has lost respect for you and no longer listens to you. This is why many teenagers start “talking back”, “lying”, are “ungrateful”, become “hateful”, and are constantly fighting with you.

3. Poor Habits & Lack Of Discipline

If your child becomes lazy, unmotivated, and irresponsible, it is because they have established a “rhythm” of poor behavior where they have formed bad habits and lack discipline.

4. Purpose & Meaning

One of the main causes of why so many teenagers exude poor behavior is because they lack purpose and meaning in their life. Without it, they will continue to focus their energy on “destructive” behavior rather than “constructive” behavior.

Here’s the deal…

Your teenager is going through their “formative years” right now which is going to have a profound impact on the rest of their life.

How you choose to help him or her now will determine their ability to become a healthy, happy, and responsible adult.

However…

Because you have lost your ability to communicate with them means they are no longer listening to you.

This is where I can help.

As your teen counselor not only can I help your child address their issues, but I can also help you rebuild your relationship with them so that they will want to talk to you when things become difficult again.

Get the help that you need now so that you can…

  • Regain control of the situation so that it does not get worse
  • Have the peace of mind knowing that you are doing your best so that you don’t feel guilty
  • Feel confident knowing your child and the situation is getting better
  • Create a healthy and long lasting relationship with your child

HOW THIS WORKS

Step 1 – Contact me (at the bottom of this page) and schedule your free 20-minute consultation

Step 2 – After your free consult, if we determine that I would be a good fit then we will schedule your 90-minute intake session ($260).

During the “intake session” is where I will examine everything that is happening with your situation and then send you a written outline of what I think needs to be done to help you and your child.

Step 3 – After the intake session, if you agree with my suggestions then we can schedule our weekly 45-minute sessions (4 session packages run $515).

FAQ

1. Why should I choose you as our counselor?

Because…

A. I have been doing this for 20 years and have seen every type of scenario you can imagine

B. I know how to connect with your teen where they will want to listen to me

C. I know how to help you regain control of the situation

However…

The best way to answer that is after your free consultation. During this call you can determine whether or not I am a good fit.

2. How much does this cost?

The first 90-minute session with written outline costs $260

Four weekly 45-minute session packages costs $515

*You will only purchase the four weekly sessions if you agree with my assessment after the intake session

3. How are payments handled?

Credit card through PayPal.

4. Do you accept insurance?

No.

5. How are sessions held?

Phone or Skype voice call only. No video chatting.

6. Do you offer in person sessions?

No.

For two good reasons:

A. Your teen probably does not want counseling and by having phone sessions, it makes them feel safer and less vulnerable increasing the chances of them speaking with me.

B. Phone sessions makes it easier for us to connect allowing you and your child to speak with me from the comfort of your home, office, etc.

7. What happens if my teenager does not want to talk to you?

A. Put them on the phone and let them listen to me. I will do all the talking. 80% of the time they open up because I know what to say to them.

B. If they fall in the 20% and still don’t want to talk, then I can at least coach you on how to deal with them.

8. How long does it take to see results?

This can vary depending on your circumstances.

However, I guarantee after our first session you will feel much better knowing that things are moving in the right direction.

9. What’s the next step?

To inquire about a free consultation, fill out the contact form below. If you do not hear back from me within two business days (Mon – Fri), please feel free to email me again.

Get Help For Your Teen

Dear parent,

Are you struggling with your teenager?

Are they out of control, lost, depressed, angry, unmotivated, or behaving poorly?

Have you lost your ability to communicate with them?

If so…I can help!

My name is Sam Miller and as the founder of the Parenting Teenagers Academy, my mission is to provide parents the best tools  to help them raise responsible, healthy, happy, and successful young adults.

For the last 15 years, as a teen counselor and coach I have been working with many troubled teens to help them address their emotions, solve their problems, and communicate more effectively so they can get back on track with their life.

I have worked with teenagers who are depressed, angry, addicted to drugs, have anxiety, withdrawn, lost, rebellious, lack motivation,  irresponsible, and more. In fact, many parents have come to me as their last resort before sending them off to boot camp or putting them on harmful pills where I have saved them thousands of dollars!

Your child does not need drugs that can cause them irreversible damage.

Nor do they need someone barking orders to scare them into compliance.

What they need is someone who knows how to listen to them in a way where they feel heard and talk to them in a way that will help them “want” to become more open, communicative, and responsible.

Because isn’t that what you want?

Don’t you want your child to make good choices so that you no longer have to babysit and worry about them in life?

Don’t you want to feel good knowing that your child has the tools and emotional well-being to become successful and happy in life?

TESTIMONIAL

Before speaking with Sam I was truly at a loss and had no idea how I was going to help my son (16 years old). He had been ditching school, caught doing drugs, depressed, and was hanging around with the wrong crowd. Not only was I worried, but I felt guilty that I failed him as parent. I know a lot of his problems had to do with not having his father around.

After my sessions with Sam I instantly felt this relief come over me where for the first time I knew that everything was going to be okay. Once he began talking to my boy, I could see that his attitude completely shifted. I am so grateful for the work he does. He is a true healer! – Linda Hale

Here is how it works…

Step 1 – We have a free 20-minute phone consult to see if I would be a good fit

Step 2 – We schedule our weekly sessions where I can speak with you or your child (usually a mixture of both)

FAQ

1. How much does this cost?

After the free consult, one 45-minute session is $150 or a package of four is $500. Each session must be once per week at the same time. Credit card payments are managed through PayPal (no insurance accepted).

2. How are sessions held?

Phone.

3. What happens if my teenager does not want to talk to you?

A. Put them on the phone and let them listen to me. I will do all the talking. 80% of the time they open up because I know what to say to them.

B. If they fall in the 20% and still don’t want to talk, then I can at least coach you on how to deal with them.

4. How long does it take to see results?

This can vary depending on your circumstances. However, I guarantee after our first session you will feel much better knowing that things are moving in the right direction.

To inquire about a free consultation, fill out the form below:

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Your Phone

Your Timezone

Best time to reach you?

What do you need help with?


Tips & Advice For Raising Your Teenager

Hello.

My name is Sam Miller and I am the founder of The Parenting Teenagers Academy.

Here are all of our free lessons on how to help your teen address these issues.

If you need counseling and coaching support, go here

Alcohol – How to talk to your teen about alcohol

Anger – How to help your teen address their anger issues

Being Cool & Popular – How to talk to your teen about not being cool & popular

Boredom – How to talk to your teen when they are bored

Bullying – How to talk to your teen about bullying

Career & Life Purpose  – How to talk to your teen about building their future career & life purpose

Dating & Sex – How to talk to your teen about dating and sex

Depression – How to talk to your teen when they are depressed

Drugs – How to talk to your teen about drugs

Hurt Feelings – How to talk to your teen if they have hurt feelings

Lying – How to address your teen when you catch them lying

Money – How to talk to your teen about being responsible with money

Out of Control – How to talk to your teen when they are out of control

Overweight – How to talk to your when they become overweight

Partying – How to talk to your teen about partying

Rebellion – How to address teenage rebellion

School – Tips on how to address problems at school

Stealing – What to do if your teen is stealing

Technology Addiction – What to do if your teen is addicted to technology

Motivatonal Quotes & Phrases For Parents

In this day and age of social media and mobile phones, it can be hard for a parent to capture their child’s attention and keep them motivated to do the right things in life.

Between work, putting food on the table, chores, and so on, we know how difficult it can be to stay inspired to do your best.

So we have come up with a list of motivational quotes and phrases that will help you get through the many challenges ahead.

We also thought it would be a good idea to include some motivational quotes that you can use with your child as a way to inspire them.

1. When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn. – Harriet Beecher Stowe

2. Try giving up all the thoughts that make you feel bad, or even just some of them, and see how doing that changes your life. You don’t need negative thoughts. All they have ever given you was a false self that suffers. They are all lies. ― Gina Lake

3. Reframing encourages you to say, ‘Let’s look at this another way.’ By changing the frame around a situation, you not only change your perception of it, but its meaning for you as well. If you were to take one painting and view it in three different frames, each combination would offer a completely different presentation. Your perceptions work the same way. ― Susan C. Young

4. No one is in control of your happiness but you; therefore, you have the power to change anything about yourself or your life that you want to change. – Barbara DeAngelis

5. Somewhere between handling challenges, taking care of business, and juggling responsibilities, you may have lost pieces of yourself which you long to recover. Perhaps they were buried and forgotten long ago. Rediscovering is more than just being reminded of these golden treasures. It is being able to excavate your riches by pulling them out, polishing them off, and allowing them to shine again. ― Susan C. Young

6. Remember to say thank you for being alive, remember to tell people you love them while they’re still alive.

7. A woman with a voice is by definition a strong woman. But the search to find that voice can be remarkably difficult. – Melinda Gates

8. I’ve come to believe that each of us has a personal calling that’s as unique as a fingerprint – and that the best way to succeed is to discover what you love and then find a way to offer it to others in the form of service, working hard, and also allowing the energy of the universe to lead you. – Oprah Winfrey

9. There are two kinds of teachers: the kind that fills you with so much quail shot that you can’t move, and the kind that just gives you a little prod behind and you jump to the skies. — Robert Frost

10. Education is not to reform students or amuse them or to make them expert technicians. It is to unsettle their minds, widen their horizons, inflame their intellects, teach them to think straight, if possible. — Robert M. Hutchins

 

How To Stop Teenagers From Stealing

teen stealing

In this lesson we are going to explore stealing.

In it you will learn:

  • Five reasons why your teenager may be stealing
  • The root cause of why anyone starts to steal
  • A step-by-step process of how to turn the situation around
  • The importance of changing the situation around sooner than later




Dear Parent,

For the last 15 years I have been helping teenagers with depression, addictions, anger, rebellion, anxiety, stress, and more. My mission is to help your child become a healthy, happy, and responsible young adult. Please enjoy these free tips on how to talk to your teen about stealing.

Sam Miller – Teen Counselor & Coach

Take A Moment

Did you ever steal? Did you have friends who stole? Think back to when you were a teenager and ask yourself, “Why would I or my friends steal?”

Overview

If you have found out that your teenager is stealing, the first thing you need to do is understand why they’re stealing. Each reason will require a different approach when it comes time to speak with them about this. When speaking with them, make sure you do not come from a judgmental place or use fear as a way to try and get them to stop. Unless he or she is an outright criminal (which would require a different approach) keep the conversation calm and centered. Fear and guilt will only send them in a more negative direction because when someone starts to steal, it’s usually a cry for help.

Below is a list of the top five reasons why most (not all) teenagers steal.

1. Fear Of Lack

Reason: Most people who steal will fall under this category and it’s the simplest reason. Because of the way that society is structured with money, if a person comes from a poverty-stricken background where they feel like they cannot make money on their own, or have access to it, they will steal. Chances are they probably don’t want to steal but they just believe that there is no other way for them to get what they want.

Solution: First, you must reassure your teenager that there is plenty to go around and that they do not need to steal to get what they want. Even if you come from an environment that does not have a lot of money, you can still teach your teen that there is enough for everyone.

Second, ask your teenager this question: “How would you like it if someone stole your things?” You need to make sure they know what it would feel like if it happened to them. If it’s already happened, just remind them about how they felt at that time.

Third, help them find a way they can make some extra money. Once they’re paid for doing a job well done, they won’t feel the need to steal. If they’re really young, there are still ways they can try and make some money on their own. This will require you to be creative in how you help them find their way. Just look at little kids who would build lemonade stands, wash cars, and so on. Your teenager needs to find creative ways they can make some money so they won’t feel the need to steal.



2. Filling A Void

Reason: Some people steal because they’re filling a void in their life. They may be sad, lost, or depressed and while most people eat or do drugs to fill that void, some will actually steal to fill it.

Solution: You need to help them feel better about themselves and their life. They will first need to deal with their emotions and once they do, they can start creating a new life where they will feel better about themselves.

*Please see module called “Depression” to learn more.

3. Attention

Reason: People who steal for attention are generally ones who want to be caught. Because this is a cry for help, they’re seeking attention. If you recall when the famous actress Winona Ryder (who has money) was caught stealing, she admitted that she had a problem and was seeking attention.

Solution: You need to give your teenager more attention when they do positive things in their life. Try and help them discover other things that they’re good at and when they do those things, praise them and love them to death. Once they see that they can get attention for things they’re good at and that are healthy for them, they wont seek negative ways to get attention.

4. The Thrill & Rush

Reason: Stealing gives people a sense of excitement and a rush. Because there is a risk of getting caught, those who do it for this reason are adrenaline junkies. Just like people who jump out of airplanes, business men who seek to close a deal, card players looking to win the next hand and so on, these people become addicted to the thrill of the rush.

Solution: Help your teenager find something else that brings them excitement. If they’re stealing because they want the thrill, it’s because nothing else in their life is bringing them any joy or excitement. Help them find something more constructive that brings them this thrill and you will see that they will stop stealing.

5. It’s A Game

Reason: Some people who steal just love the game of it. It’s like a puzzle they want to solve. It becomes a way for them to engage their mind so they can “solve the puzzle”. Most of these people who do the stealing for this reason rarely ever care about what it is they’re stealing. They’re just looking for the challenge.

Solution: Help them find something else that is constructive and challenging.

Repeating Myself

I know it may sound as if I’m just repeating myself because, well, I am! It amazes me that society has taken such simple issues and turned them into such complex problems. Everything comes down to pleasure and pain. If your child is stealing, it’s because they believe this is the easiest way for them to experience pleasure. This is why you need to replace the negative behavior, stealing, with something else that brings them pleasure and is positive and constructive. This way they will associate that behavior with being more pleasurable.

Get Help

Need help with your teen? To learn more about our counseling and coaching services and to schedule your free consultation, go here



Want more tips?

Alcohol – How to talk to your teen about alcohol

Anger – How to help your teen address their anger issues

Being Cool & Popular – How to talk to your teen about not being cool & popular

Boredom – How to talk to your teen when they are bored

Bullying – How to talk to your teen about bullying

Career & Life Purpose  – How to talk to your teen about building their future career & life purpose

Dating & Sex – How to talk to your teen about dating and sex

Depression – How to talk to your teen when they are depressed

Drugs – How to talk to your teen about drugs

Ecstasy – How to talk to your teen about using ecstasy aka MDMA or “Molly”

Hard Drugs – How to talk to your teen about hard drugs

Hurt Feelings – How to talk to your teen if they have hurt feelings

Lying – How to address your teen when you catch them lying

Money – How to talk to your teen about being responsible with money

Out of Control – How to talk to your teen when they are out of control

Overweight – How to talk to your when they become overweight

Partying – How to talk to your teen about partying

Rebellion – How to address teenage rebellion

School – Tips on how to address problems at school

Stealing – What to do if your teen is stealing

Technology Addiction – What to do if your teen is addicted to technology

Technology & Video Game Addiction

In this lesson we are going to explore teen technology & video game addiction.

In it you will learn:

  • The root cause of all addictions
  • Different types of technology addictions
  • Why teenagers are becoming addicted to technology
  • How to help your child find balance with video games, Facebook, cell phone, & more




Dear Parent,

For the last 15 years I have been helping teenagers with depression, addictions, anger, rebellion, anxiety, stress, lack of motivation, and more. My mission is to help your child become a healthy, happy, and responsible young adult. Please enjoy these free tips on how to help your teen.

Sam Miller – Teen Counselor & Coach

Take A Moment

I want you to think about how much time you spend watching TV, browsing the internet, using your mobile device, on Facebook, and so on. Do you think you spend too much time using these technology platforms? Have you struck a balance with them?

Video Games, Facebook, Cell Phones, Internet, Etc…

Technology and video game addiction is becoming more commonplace with many teenagers and while the addiction is not the same as a chemical one via drugs or alcohol, the psychological impacts it can cause is much the same because individuals still become withdrawn, lost, and depressed. So why is video game and technology addiction on the rise?

Boredom

Boredom has to be one of the most common reasons that people become addicted to anything. It’s when people are bored that they want to ingest something (either physically, mentally, or emotionally) into their body to cover up the fact that they’re bored. So why are people bored?

Lack Of Imagination

Imagination is the greatest gift to be bestowed on us when we were born. As children, we would use our imagination to make things up and play with our friends and toys. If you watch little children play and use their imagination, it’s a beautiful thing to watch them “create their world” as they go along.

As we get older, many of us are guided away from using our imagination because it is time to “get serious”. For many teenagers, this happens during school where they are told that they need to focus on getting good grades and getting prepped for college. The “real world” starts to take over and the pressures and stresses that come with this starts to weigh them down.



Escaping Reality

When your teenager is playing a video game, on Facebook, or texting, their mind enters a virtual world that distracts them from these pressures. It’s this distraction that they enjoy so much that becomes addicting for them psychologically. It’s their escape where they don’t have to worry about school, grades, and becoming an adult.

Just look at how many businesses have blocked YouTube and Facebook from their office. There are so many adults that are bored out of their mind and they want to escape this boredom by watching videos or chatting aimlessly. Think about this phrase for a moment: “Killing time”

How many times have you heard people say that? If life were filled with joy and excitement, why would anyone want to “kill time”? Now think about this phrase for a moment: “Time is flying by”

Do you see the difference? Either people hate their life so much that they want to kill time, or they love it so much that they don’t even notice it and time flies by.

ADD & ADHD

All scientists have done by creating these ridiculous ailments is to categorize boredom. Rather than being open and honest with the fact that kids are bored, society feels better by “solving” the reason that so many people are not interested in life and school. Think about it – we have to drug our kids to pay attention to something! Life is supposed to be filled with so much joy that they should want to pay attention to their lives. If your child is not paying attention, it’s a sure sign that they’re not interested. Rather than drugging them, how about finding something that is more interesting for them to want to learn? Kids do want to learn. They just don’t want to learn the way they’re being taught in most schools.

Here is another way to look at it: Do you have to drug kids to play video games, surf the net, listen to music, or play with their friends? Of course not, we only have to drug kids to do things they don’t want to do.

Chemical Stimulation

When kids are using technology and are stimulated by this, there is a level of dopamine being released that can create a high for them (especially with video games). The mind does NOT know the difference between reality and alternate realities so when it’s immersed in all the graphics and action taking place in games (or conversations and information on Facebook or texting), as far as the mind can tell, it’s real. So real that it stimulates the mind and creates some level of pleasure and euphoria.

Pleasure vs. Pain

The mind will always choose something that it believes is more pleasurable. Because most kids hate school and many aspects of there lives (chores, family, etc…) they would rather escape into technology because the mind sees this as something more pleasurable and the alternative as something painful.

The Solution

If you want to help your teenager not become addicted to video games or any technology escape, you need to be creative and help them see that THIS world is more pleasurable. The way you’re going to do this is by figuring out what they’re passionate about and creating a relevant education and environment to support their passion. Once they find their “thing” in life, the mind will define that as being more pleasurable and will not seek an escape refuge using technology.



Finding Balance

Our world is driven by technology and there is no way around this. The real issue here is finding balance between both worlds so that your teen doesn’t want to abuse their technology as an escape. This is about “how” your teenager uses technology. Are they playing the video games but are also excited about the next thing they’re going to do afterwards? Or, are they depressed and playing video games so they don’t have to face a life they’re not enjoying? Helping your teenager to find their balance is going to be crucial especially as our world becomes more technologically driven.

Rules

Some people like the idea of creating and enforcing rules like, telling your child they only get X amount of hours to play video games or use Facebook. Rules are great especially when you can enforce them. By telling your child that they only get one hour on Facebook and one-hour playing video games, you’re giving them some structure (but you need to be consistent in enforcing it).

However, rules only deal with the surface level issue and not the root cause. Wouldn’t you rather your child find their balance and have a healthy perspective on life rather than having to watch over them all the time and govern your rules? Parents hate having to keep after their kids and the reason why they have to is because they’re not helping their teenager find their own balance in life. So by all means, definitely set some rules and boundaries for them to follow and at the same time, empower them to be excited about life so they will naturally choose something else.

Talking With Your Teenager

It’s also very important that you have an open and honest talk with your teenager about your rules and why you want them to follow them. Don’t just say, “Because I said so” as that will get you nowhere fast. It’s imperative that they understand the good you are trying to do for them and show them how other people are hurting their lives when they are totally consumed by video games, Facebook, and technology. Help paint a picture for them as to why it’s more pleasurable for them to maintain a balance with technology and real life.

Energy

Everything in life is energy and this means that when your child has a lot of it, it needs to go somewhere. If you don’t help them discover somewhere they can put their energy, by default it will be directed to things like games and Facebook. So be proactive, creative and excited to help them discover who they really are! I promise that once they find something they’re good at and want to do, they will naturally gravitate toward it.

Exercise

If you have not done so already, make sure your teen is getting at least 90 minutes a day of physical exercise. We all sit on our butts now and this is why so many people are lethargic, depressed, overweight, and so on. It’s important that you instill in your teenager that they need to be active on a daily basis.

Make sure they’re in the sun for at least an hour a day as well because it helps to create a positive mood. You will notice that many people who are depressed are very pale because they never see the light of day. This is why people are much happier in tropical weather. So get them in the sun and make sure they are exercising and breaking a sweat!

Most importantly, “how” you go about getting them motivated or inspired is going to be crucial. You cannot force anything on your child. They must choose it for themselves

Lead By Example

And of course, make sure you’re leading by example. It’s going be hard to swallow your ideas if all they see you do is watch TV, surf the net and play on your computer all day. If you too have an issue with spending too much time in front of any screen, this is your opportunity to find a way to bond with your teen outside of the house.

Get Help

Need help with your teen? To learn more about our counseling and coaching services and to schedule your free consultation, go here



Want more tips?

Alcohol – How to talk to your teen about alcohol

Anger – How to help your teen address their anger issues

Being Cool & Popular – How to talk to your teen about not being cool & popular

Boredom – How to talk to your teen when they are bored

Bullying – How to talk to your teen about bullying

Career & Life Purpose  – How to talk to your teen about building their future career & life purpose

Dating & Sex – How to talk to your teen about dating and sex

Depression – How to talk to your teen when they are depressed

Drugs – How to talk to your teen about drugs

Hard Drugs – How to talk to your teen about hard drugs

Hurt Feelings – How to talk to your teen if they have hurt feelings

Lying – How to address your teen when you catch them lying

Money – How to talk to your teen about being responsible with money

Out of Control – How to talk to your teen when they are out of control

Overweight – How to talk to your when they become overweight

Partying – How to talk to your teen about partying

Rebellion – How to address teenage rebellion

School – Tips on how to address problems at school

Stealing – What to do if your teen is stealing

 

How To Talk To Your Teenager About School

teen bored school

In this lesson we are going to explore teenagers having problems at school because they are disinterested.

In it you will learn:

  • Why so many teenagers hate school
  • What you as a parent can do to support your teen
  • Why it’s important that parents change their approach
  • How the old school system is failing our nation
  • The reason why smart kids are not excelling
  • Your child has a very unique gift waiting to be unlocked
  • How to teach your teen that school is everywhere




Dear Parent,

For the last 15 years I have been helping teenagers with depression, addictions, anger, rebellion, anxiety, stress, lack of motivation, and more. My mission is to help your child become a healthy, happy, and responsible young adult. Please enjoy these free tips on how to talk to your teen.

Sam Miller – Teen Counselor & Coach

Take A Moment

Did you like school? Did you enjoy going to class? Did you respect and appreciate your teachers? Do you wish they had taught you other information? Or maybe they could have taught you in a different way? Think back to when you were in school and take a moment to write down what you liked and disliked. Then write down what you wish they had done differently.

Overview

There are generally two reasons why kids struggle in school:
1. They are bored.
2. They are struggling with some emotional issues and it’s affecting their ability to focus.

If your teenager falls into the second category, struggling with emotions, then you need to help them deal with these issues so that they can move on with their life. But if they are bored or “for some reason not doing well”, then read on as this is what this module focuses on.

“My kid is very smart but for some reason is not doing very well in school.”

Does that sound familiar to you? I hear this from parents all the time. If your teenager is having problems at school when it comes to studying and staying focused, you’re not alone. Millions of parents around the world are experiencing the same issue. Our psychologists are calling this ADD or ADHD. I call it: School sucks!
I’m sorry to tell you mom and dad but most schools, not all, are terrible at educating our youth and here is why: Public school systems were developed by financiers and banker’s in the 1930’s. The factory industry was booming so they needed to create a bunch of carbon copy people who thought and acted the same way. Students were being prepared to work in the factory so they didn’t encourage critical thinking.



As we know, China has most of our factory work now. And India and the Philippines is the best place to outsource remedial jobs such as admin work and phone clerks. What does this mean for those of us in the rest of the world? It means our strength is going to be dependent on our creativity and critical thinking. The issue here is that our school systems have not changed to reflect this. Because of how our school system was established, it’s causing our economy to suffer because our youth are not as creative at coming up with solutions or thinking for themselves.

The Old System Is Dying

Most parents dread to hear that their kids don’t want to go to school and get a degree. It’s been engrained in our collective psyche that “We need to go to school, get a degree, and get a job”. As I type those words I already feel less inspired. Just by looking at how miserable people are in their lives it’s amazing that many would want their kids to follow suit. It’s almost as if parents feel that because they had to suffer their kids should too. Believe it or not, there are other ways of creating a successful life. And by the looks of how many adults in the world are having mid-life crises, it shows that the old system is dying. However, because this is really the only “game” in town, it’s understandable that most parents get nervous when their kids don’t want to follow suit. So what is the real problem with school?

Kids Are Bored At School

Our public school systems, generally speaking (there are exceptions), are one of the main reasons why our world is struggling today because they’re not teaching anything interesting. When your kids go to school, they’re bored out of their mind because what’s being taught is not relevant to whom they are, nor is it creative or engaging enough to keep them stimulated. When they become bored and don’t have anything constructive to put their energy into (see module on Boredom) they become destructive. This is why so many teenagers are misbehaving at school; they’re bored.

Kids Love To Learn!

The truth is, your teenager does like to learn. Ever see them figure out a video game? Facebook? Fix their computer, cell phone, and so on? It takes a smart person to figure some of those things out. In fact, chances are your teenager taught you some things about your computer or cell phone. It’s not that your kids don’t like to learn, they just like to learn things they’re interested in. The real question we should be asking ourselves is this: How do we create an educational system relevant to what teenagers want to learn, and that keeps them engaged and productive?

Babysitting

Unfortunately because most parents have to work, they need their kid to be doing something during the day. This means that what most schools provide is babysitting. And from my experience in the public school system, I can easily say that they barely even do that. I know its tough for most parents to have to not only work, but also help their teenager learn something so that they can be productive. The challenge here is that if we leave it up to the public school system, well, we will continue to see high dropouts, low attendance, poor grades, ADD, and the destructive behaviors we see due to boredom.

Your Child Has A Unique Gift

So many parents are concerned because of the lack of motivation their child has in school. Remember, we all move towards what brings us pleasure and move away from what brings us pain. If your child is bored at school and has “issues”, it is because school brings them pain. Unfortunately most parents try to force their kids to like school and that is not going to work. The only way to motivate your teenager is to help them discover what’s in it for them. What is going to bring them pleasure from doing their schoolwork?

As outlined in the Career module of this course, every one of us has a unique gift to offer the world. It does not even have to be a major invention or business idea. It could just be as simple as “how” that person provides their service or does “their thing”. If you truly want to empower your teenager and see them become very proactive in their education, the first step you have to take is help them explore and discover what it is that they’re passionate about in life. They need to find their one “thing” that they can sink their teeth into that keeps them driven and motivated. Just look at any person who loves what they do and you will see that you never need to motivate them.



Why?

Because when someone is passionate about what they’re doing, their excitement is what will motivate them. It’s the natural juice in all of us that makes us jump out of bed ready to start the day. Your job as your teenagers guide is to help them explore something that excites them a lot. It may take a few months of trial and error until you find it, but I promise it’s like a hidden gem ready to be discovered and polished. Once they do find it, it will become their “special project”.

Relevant Education

Once your teenager has discovered their one thing that drives and motivates them, then you need to help him or her create a relevant education around that. Whether it be having them research it online, reading books, meeting people who do what they want to do, enrolling them in another “outside” course, finding them a mentor, and so on, you need to do the best you can to help surround them with as many “props” that are relevant to what excites them. Once they dive in, it will get the ball rolling so that other opportunities can present themselves through synchronicity.

Supporting Them

Although your teenager will be motivated and excited, this does not mean they won’t face some challenges along the way. This is where you need to be their coach and help them overcome these challenges. Because your teenager will be, for a lack of better terms, working “outside the system” to educate themselves, this means they will be in their school alone (unless they are enrolled in another program). If you start to see them taper off with their special project, then do not take this as a sign that they’re not interested. It probably means they hit a roadblock or fear. You need to help them through this so they don’t give up. The first couple of years will be challenging so be ready to become their cheerleader and support them through their challenges so that they learn at an early age how to pick themselves up when they’ve fallen down.

Ask your teenager the following questions:

  • What would you like to learn? Is there anything that interests you?
  • What do you like about school?
  • What do you dislike about school?
  • What could your school be doing better to keep kids interested in learning?

Once they have answered these questions, you should be able to gage where they’re at mentally with learning and then you will need to be creative with how you support them.

College

I’m in no way saying that your kid should just drop out of school. Many parents want their teenager to move on to college and that’s fine. But first let me point out something that is VERY relevant for you as a parent. Do you really want your kid wasting your money on college if they’re just going to be slacking off and bouncing around from one major to the next? Do you know how many kids in college come out with their degree and never end up using it? That’s $50 – $100k down the drain. There are many kids in college who have no idea how to apply what they’re learning. This is a waste of everyone’s money, time, and resources.

Find A Compromise

What you really want to do is strike a balance between a “public education” and a relevant “home education”. By acknowledging to your teenager that you understand that, for them, school is not that great and that you do not expect them to become a scholarly student, this will alleviate their pressures, which is one of the reasons why so many teenagers struggle. Ideally you want to find a compromise where you get them to finish high school so that if they want to go to college later on, they can. Tell your teenager they don’t have to go to college right away if they don’t want to, but that they do need to be showing some growth in their “special project” by taking action. And, they need to get good enough grades so that they can go to college if they want.

Maybe later on they will find out that college would be relevant, or not. Maybe they will discover that they just need a vocational school. Or maybe they will discover that they would be best suited in an internship of some sorts. But you need to find a compromise so that they don’t feel like there is no way out. You also need to find a compromise so that they’re motivated enough to want to finish high school. And the only way to do this is to give them “something” to look forward to. Otherwise they will drag their feet and drive you nuts!



Timeline

If you find that your teenager really lacks motivation and just can’t seem to get it together enough to find their “special gift” (please see the module on Motivation) or put energy towards it, I would recommend that you give them a timeline and say by a certain date, they need to be ready to live on their own and pay their own bills. But let me make this very clear, this should not be a threat. It needs to be said with love and compassion and not using fear as a mechanism to try and motivate them. The conversation can go something like this:

“It’s ok if you don’t want to learn or put time into something you care about and want to do with your life. But I want you to know by the time you are (this age), you need to be ready to live on your own and pay your own way. I’m more than happy to support you in getting started with your life in any way that I can, but at the same time, I cannot be your crutch and just let you get by while living at this house. If you need any help with your education or finding something to do, let me know.”

Also, this conversation should be a last resort. Meaning that you have tried to help them find their “special project” and you have also done the best you can to make sure they don’ have any anger or resentment issues that might be holding them down. If you have truly done your best to support them in a neutral and loving way and they still seem to slack off, then its time that you put reality on their front door so that they know that at a certain point, they need to take action.

The reason you don’t want to use fear as a mechanism is because this can create conflict and send them in a downward spiral. What really needs to happen is that they need to be confronted with reality from a loving and neutral space. Because most parents fear their kids not becoming successful (and that it reflects poorly on them), they come from a fearful place. This is why so many parents struggle with this issue. They use fear to create more fear. You want to use love and compassion to create opportunity, while at the same time, helping them wake up to the fact that they need to become proactive in their own life.

But My Kid Is Really Out Of Control

If you are faced with a teenager who is exhibiting behavior that is beyond “normal boredom” from school, then there is something else going on with them. They probably have some unresolved anger or resentment that is keeping them from wanting to learn or being focused. I have come across many teenagers who are so angry and frustrated with life that all they do is create more destructive behavior. The solution is that you need help them get it out. It’s an energy that’s inside them (literally) and it needs to come out. They need to find a way to vent their anger (see module on Anger) and frustration both verbally and physically. Once it’s all out and transformed, you will see your child become a different person.

As noted in my bio, I used to throw rave events for ten years and would see the most angry gangsters come to my parties. These were people who were very destructive mentally, physically, and spiritually. But once they came to our party, took ecstasy, and started to talk through their problems and dance the night away (this is where they got out their anger physically), they seemed to change dramatically. I could see them transform like a butterfly overnight. The most hardcore brut became a silly playful child hugging their friends. It’s quite astonishing to watch this transformation take place right in front of you.

So once you help your teenager to get out their anger and frustration in whatever process you come up with, you can start to explore what it is that excites them and get them more involved with their education.



School Is Everywhere

Asking good questions is the best school anyone can put himself or herself through. Every time I meet someone who is well educated in his or her “special gift”, I ask a lot of questions. From a one-hour conversation I can learn so much more than an entire year at some public school. You want to teach your child how to start asking good questions and pay attention to what is going on in all of life. Every moment we are alive we’re in school. Just by paying attention, listening, and asking good questions we can educate people far more than most schools can. Teach your teenager how to ask good questions and they will always be learning.

I have a friend who went to Stanford (one of the top business schools in the world) and when I asked him about his education, while he did say it was valuable, he said he learned more from a one-hour meeting with a major business executive, where he was allowed to ask ten questions, then his entire time at Stanford. Teach your children how to ask good questions and listen well and they will educate themselves on a daily basis.

My Experience

I had discussed in the “My Story” portion of the course how I was able to change my life once I found something I was passionate about. I’m not going to go into full detail with that, however, I do want to point something out by using a simple timeline. This will show you the steps I took to transform my life outside of the school system:

Ages 7 – 13: Experienced many hardships because I did not know how to address my emotions and solve my own problems. Because of this, I became overweight, angry, resentful, lost, depressed, confused, and so on.

Ages 13 – 15: Ditched school, drank alcohol, hung out with gangs, took drugs, stole, ran away from home, and was a “troubled teenager”.

Age 16: Found my passion in life and started my “special project” which was producing events. I was still exuding poor behaviors but they started to diminish. I left high school and made an agreement with my mom to take the proficiency test (similar to GED) so that I could leave high school and start college. I recall telling my mom, “It’s not that I don’t like to learn, it’s just that I’m not learning anything in school”. My special project turned into a business and I got my first taste of accomplishment and sense of ownership. My phase of being a troubled teenager started to dissipate.

Age 17: Took some college classes to appease my mom at the local community school. Continued with my business that was doing well. At this point I was still having some troubles, but these were more normal things teenagers go through rather then extreme scenarios.

Ages 18 – 24: Launched my magazine while still producing events. Had a great opportunity to learn about many businesses and learned sales, project management, administration, and much more. By this time I was no longer a “troubled teenager” because I was too busy having fun and enjoying life. I learned structure and discipline, became more health conscious and was no longer a troubled teenager.

I wanted to share this outline because I don’t want you to think that everything is going to change overnight. It took me four years to work through my troubled teenage years. I also want to point out that after 18, even though I was not exuding terrible behaviors, I still had many pitfalls.

But once again, these were the more normal and less destructive ones. It’s important that you brace yourself and come to terms with the fact that you and your teenager will be going through a process that can take many years. What will help minimize this phase is if you don’t judge them, add fear or anger and help them to find their “special project”.

I highly recommend you take some time to pay attention to people’s stories about how they changed their lives, overcame certain obstacles and came from nothing to become highly successful (rags to riches stories).

There are many people who discuss how they were a mess and that once they found their “calling” everything changed. Even if you’re a Christian you know that once people find “God’ it changes their life. From my perspective, love, joy and excitement is how God works.

Get Help

Need help with your teen? To learn more about our counseling and coaching services and to schedule your free consultation, go here



Want more tips?

Alcohol – How to talk to your teen about alcohol

Anger – How to help your teen address their anger issues

Being Cool & Popular – How to talk to your teen about not being cool & popular

Boredom – How to talk to your teen when they are bored

Bullying – How to talk to your teen about bullying

Career & Life Purpose  – How to talk to your teen about building their future career & life purpose

Dating & Sex – How to talk to your teen about dating and sex

Depression – How to talk to your teen when they are depressed

Drugs – How to talk to your teen about drugs

Ecstasy – How to talk to your teen about using ecstasy aka MDMA or “Molly”

Hard Drugs – How to talk to your teen about hard drugs

Hurt Feelings – How to talk to your teen if they have hurt feelings

Lying – How to address your teen when you catch them lying

Money – How to talk to your teen about being responsible with money

Out of Control – How to talk to your teen when they are out of control

Overweight – How to talk to your when they become overweight

Partying – How to talk to your teen about partying

Rebellion – How to address teenage rebellion

Stealing – What to do if your teen is stealing

Technology Addiction – What to do if your teen is addicted to technology

How To Talk To Your Rebelling Teenager

teen rebellion

In this lesson we are going to explore teen rebellion.

In it you will learn:

  • What rebellion actually is
  • How you as a parent might have played a role
  • A step-by-step guide on how you can turn it around
  • The difference between anger, rebellion, and being out-of-control




Dear Parent,

For the last 15 years I have been helping teenagers with depression, addictions, anger, rebellion, anxiety, stress, lack of motivation, and more. My mission is to help your child become a healthy, happy, and responsible young adult. Please enjoy these free tips on how to talk to your teen.

Sam Miller – Teen Counselor & Coach

Take A Moment

At any point in your teenage years did you ever rebel? Did you see any of your friends rebel? Why did you or they do so? What sparked it? Take a few moments to think back to that time.

Overview

In addressing teen rebellion, it is important to get to the root cause of what it actually is because the way most parents define it is not entirely accurate. Many people define rebellion as a teenager being angry and trying to go against the grain. While these are symptoms of rebellion, they’re not the root cause of it. If you want to get to the root cause of why teenagers rebel, then you have to ask “Why?” Why are so many teenagers pissed off? Why do teenagers behave in destructive and erratic ways?

It is also important that you understand that rebellion is phase two of anger. Generally speaking, a teenager will become angry first. If their anger is not resolved or addressed, then they act out by rebelling. It is the first stages of them trying to address it but they do not know how to do so in a constructive manner. If their rebellion phase is not neutralized, then they will become out-of-control.

So what exactly is rebellion?

Rebellion is when anyone (regardless of age) is told whom and how to be in any particular situation without being included in the decision making process. Rebellion is when you force your beliefs and definitions on to your child and expect them to create a life they may not want. It’s when we’re “controlled” and so the natural affect from this is rebellion. It’s like a rubber band; you can only pull so hard until it pulls back.

Teenagers generally rebel against their parents, school, society, religion, or anything that is structured in a manner that “forces” them to be something they are not. But since this course focuses on the parent-teen relationship, I will address teenagers rebelling against their parents.



If your teenager is angry and rebelling, this is what they’re saying to you:

“I’m pissed off because you keep trying to control me”.

But let me do a better job of communicating to you what they really want to say:

Mom and/or Dad,

Thank you for caring about me. I appreciate the fact that you’re doing the best you can in trying to help me. But because you have a fear-based agenda in how you are approaching me, it hurts my feelings. I would really appreciate it if you would just accept me as I am, stop trying to control me, and then try to support me in what it is I’m trying to do. I understand that I do need to follow some rules and that you need to set boundaries for my own good. But I would also appreciate it if you would allow me to make my own mistakes and stop approaching me from a fear-based perspective. All this does is make me more scared and this is why I react the way I do. Will you please stop projecting your own fears and agenda onto me? Will you please stop controlling me and let me live my life?

Can you “hear” your child now? This is what they are really saying to you but do not have the skill set to do so.

As a parent, you need to understand that there is nothing you can do to “fix your kid”. The whole idea that parents have in trying to control the situation doesn’t work. All this does is push them away, makes them lose respect for you, and creates friction and conflict. You need to embrace the idea of accepting wherever your child is at and do the best you can to guide them along their process. Because just like you’re on your own process of maturing and figuring things out, so is your teenager.

Having An Agenda

Because you are creating a neutral space for your child to explore life, you need to let go of any agenda you may have. Only then will they begin to listen to anything you have to say. When a teenager or young adult hears anyone in authority speak to them with an agenda, they can smell it a mile away. As soon as they sense this, it sends them into a fight or flight mode because it is not providing them a neutral space for them to just be. That is what rebellion really is.

In fact, you have this same capability in you as well. It’s just that as you have gotten older, your ability to fight has weakened and because you need to “pay the bills”; your focus has been more on survival. But I am sure at some recent point someone has tried to force his or her beliefs or way of thinking on you and I am sure you did not like it. Of course, you did not rebel as a teenager would. But this is why it is important that you remember that your teenager is just starting to get a grip with their emotions so they just don’t have the skills to be calm and see all angles of what is really happening in a rational way.



Boot Camps: Hitting Rock Bottom

It breaks my heart to see so many of these military and boot camps thriving with business. These are just parents who have given up and thrown away their kids like dogs and cats to animal shelters. “I have no idea what to do so let it be someone else’s problem”. Below I outline a step-by-step process for how to address this but I want to point out that the two main reasons why boot camps work is because:

1. It provides the space for the teenager to get out their aggression through physical labor.
2. It gives them structure and discipline that helps them create a new pattern in their life.

These are things you can do as well without having to spend tens of thousands of dollars. But it does require your time and effort. While military and boot camps can help with some kids who are dealing with anger and rebellion issues, it sends a clear signal to them that you have given up and don’t know what to do. Sadly, it also sends the signal that you don’t want or love them. Another thing you should be aware of is that boot camps teach discipline through the use of fear, control, and domination. This is not a healthy and balanced way to learn discipline.

As I use the Dog Whisperer as an example, “troubled teenagers” are just the out of control pit bulls and Rottweiler’s. They got there because of their owners (parents), not because they were born this way. This is not about blaming or saying it’s the parent’s fault. This is just showing you that this is the extreme type of “reflection” your child is teaching you. They’re saying, “Look at how you have (or have not) dealt with me all my life. Look at the life and environment you have created for me. You have created such a negative environment and not given me the type of love or attention I need, now I have to be sent away for someone else to try and deal with me”.

If you really pay attention to what a boot camp does, all it is are people who spend time with your kids giving them structure and attention while creating an environment in which they’re supported to act in healthy ways (albeit they do it in an angry and militant way). The amount of teenagers in these types of camps is just one of many examples as to how many parents would rather buy their way out instead of spending the time to raise their kids on their own.

If you are at your wits end with your teenager, then chances are you have considered a boot camp (and probably did not enroll them because you did not have the money). Either way, if you’ve gotten to this point it’s a clear reflection of the fact that you have not put the time into being with your teen and guiding them along their process. If they’re so out-of-control it ‘s because they’ve never learned any boundaries nor did they have a positive role model to look up to. This is where you really need to be honest with yourself about issues you may have and heal them first before you try and take on the issues with your teenager. I cannot be specific as to how to address this since each one of you will have different issues you’re facing and need to heal.



Focus On the Root Cause

As with any issue you address with your teenager, you must focus on the root cause. The reason anyone will rebel is because they are upset and do not know how to deal with their emotions. If your teenager is rebelling, then they are angry for a reason and you need to focus on this reason, not the behaviors. Before any healing can take place, your child needs to get their frustration out of them. Once they have, then you can work on your healing process.

Here is a step-by-step action plan:

Step 1 – Release the Emotions
Help your teen in some way to get their emotions out on the table and get them out of their system.

Step 2 – Neutralize the Situation
Once their emotions are out, you need to create a calm and centered environment where a new direction can take form.

Step 3 – Redefine the Relationship
Depending on whether they are rebelling against you, school, or society, you need to help them redefine their relationship in a win-win manner so that they can move forward with their lives in a healthier way. For example, if they are rebelling against you then you need to understand why they are upset at you and then redefine your relationship addressing their concerns. If they are rebelling towards school then you need to help them come up with a new solution as to how they will become educated if they do not like the school they are in. Whatever they are rebelling against, you need to help them redefine their relationship with it so they do not act out with destructive behavior.

Step 4 – Be Consistent
In the beginning stages, your teenager will be very “raw” with their emotional state and because they are moving in a new direction, anything can and will set them off. It is important that you help create a consistent environment where new patterns can be laid down that are fair and reasonable for all involved.

Get Help

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Want more tips?

Alcohol – How to talk to your teen about alcohol

Anger – How to help your teen address their anger issues

Being Cool & Popular – How to talk to your teen about not being cool & popular

Boredom – How to talk to your teen when they are bored

Bullying – How to talk to your teen about bullying

Career & Life Purpose  – How to talk to your teen about building their future career & life purpose

Dating & Sex – How to talk to your teen about dating and sex

Depression – How to talk to your teen when they are depressed

Drugs – How to talk to your teen about drugs

Ecstasy – How to talk to your teen about using ecstasy aka MDMA or “Molly”

Hard Drugs – How to talk to your teen about hard drugs

Hurt Feelings – How to talk to your teen if they have hurt feelings

Lying – How to address your teen when you catch them lying

Money – How to talk to your teen about being responsible with money

Out of Control – How to talk to your teen when they are out of control

Overweight – How to talk to your when they become overweight

Partying – How to talk to your teen about partying

Rebellion – How to address teenage rebellion

School – Tips on how to address problems at school

Stealing – What to do if your teen is stealing

Technology Addiction – What to do if your teen is addicted to technology