Ever since our children’s first teeth start poking through, most of us are eager to start the process of caring for them by brushing each tooth with tender loving care. Perhaps we delight in their daily baths as well, because what smells better than a baby after their bath?
As they start getting older, we teach them how to brush their own teeth and later take their own baths or showers. Most kids love these tasks as they help them foster their independence. As hygiene is an important part of self-care, we want to teach them habits that will serve them. We also take our kids to the dentist and doctor for preventative care or to solve any issues. Many parents start proper nutrition habits from day one as well, hoping to teach healthy eating habits that will last a lifetime.
As our kids enter their pre-teen to teen years, proper nutrition and self-care can go completely out the window, at least for a time. No matter how well we think we’re teaching them, they may reach a point during these years where proper self-care is not a priority. And this can be stressful for parents.
If you have ever tried to force your child to brush their teeth, bathe or eat healthy during these years, you may have experienced how futile it can sometimes be. Here are a few tips to get you through this time with minimal angst.
~ Encourage your child to maintain proper self-care. You can remind them how good it feels (even if it was in the distant past) to have clean teeth, a clean body and a healthy diet.
~Set a good example for your teen. Maintain yourself in a clean and healthy way. Show them you care about yourself.
~You may already know it isn’t very effective to force the issue, so don’t even try. Forcing our kids to do anything they don’t want to do yields very temporary results.
~Realize and accept that at this point in their lives they simply don’t care, are being lazy and have placed what we feel is for their highest good as a low priority.
~ Know that it’s a phase and “this too shall pass.”
~Make it a choice to hold the highest vision for your child no matter what they are choosing. Remember that it is your personal perspective that is determining how you are feeling.
~Remind them that their Internal Guidance System can help direct them to their highest choices by what feels best to them.
Granted, this can be a challenging stage for both parents and teens. We want our kids to feel good and we have certain ideas about what that looks like. If we can approach this phase with more ease and less control, we stand a better chance of inspiring them to their highest choices.
Please feel free to comment.
© 2014. Sharon Ballantine. All Rights Reserved.
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