Teenagers often get a bad rap. They get called out in our local Facebook groups for shenanigans, they are on the receiving end of angry customers, not to mention teen’s parents regularly complain about their lack of enthusiasm for school or to get a job or to get their act together and apply for college.
Yet many of these things are “normal” teen behavior. And while we don’t want to encourage laziness and we do want to inspire a healthy work ethic in academics, jobs, and for their future…we often forget we were once teenagers. There is so much going on in their brains, their bodies, and in their emotional life!
Many teenagers in this community (and worldwide) are doing impressive and positive things, they are working hard at school and a job, they are kind to others, they are making strides, despite the past few years of craziness, at becoming adults who will make their mark on the world.
I am lucky enough to work with one of those teenagers this summer!
Cassidy came to me through the Lewisville ISD Summer Internship Program and she’s been helping me create and schedule my weekly social media campaigns.
I love working with her because, as a teen, she gives me a fresh perspective on how I can reach parents in need of support and coaching for the relationships they have with their kids.
Cassidy loves to create new graphics for me, and to be honest, I was kind of stuck in a certain style that wasn’t really effective. She’s also come up with some new topic content for me based on the kinds of challenges she and her teen friends are having with their parents.
Someone might wonder why I haven’t thought of employing my own teenagers to take part in my social media…the short answer is, my kids really don’t care about my social media. They could care less that their mom has 60k+ followers on TikTok. And, they have their own jobs they like well enough in local Flo Mo businesses.
Cassidy has kept up with the work I’ve given her and even worked ahead at times when she would be on vacation or touring colleges with her family. She’s also communicating on a regular basis and responds quickly when I reach out to her.
Let’s cut our teens some slack. The past two years have been hard on everyone, especially kids who had to roll with a lot of punches in their daily lives. Kids don’t have the emotional skills their adults do. And some of the adults of the world have not had the bandwidth or solid coping skills to take on the pandemic either.
If you’ve got a business and could use some help, think outside the box and consider hiring a local teen! They bring a unique perspective! And way to go LISD for creating a summer internship program that matches high school kids with businesses in our community.
And, if your teen is struggling to get to summer school or to their summer job, don’t get furious…get curious. There’s usually a reason for the behavior. Ask yourself what’s really going on. Getting angry and saying your teen is just “being lazy” doesn’t help motivate them and will impact the way they feel about themselves. Mom, Dad…you’re their guide, remember that!