“Teens today have an easy life” is a very common phrase.
I would like to differ. I empathise with them and I strongly believe that teens today have a tougher life. Sitting on my bed with a book in my hand and a mom to guard full time I didn’t have much choice but today my daughter, sitting on the bed in the other room with her I pad and a phone and a smart watch has much more choices and is exposed to temptation all the time. ‘
Back then we hardly had malls and overwhelming online shopping sale, with advertising luring us from every corner, but today she is bombarded with it. She does not know how to maintain the equilibrium. Yet am so proud that she can hold her head high and think rationally. She comes to me and talks about things she is getting stuck upon. She values m,y money and asks my opinion before she pushes me into spending it on her.
Yes some times she goes overboard, she gets stubborn, she gets too tempted to use rationale. Oh but poor she. How much she has to deal with. The schools are jazzier, the parents are different. The parents are not the ones they were earlier. My friend smokes pot and she has a seventeen year old son, Kabeer. She thought no-one knows till one day Kabeer retorted in anger and got back to her on this weak point. This left her speechless in the power struggle. Yes of course we have power struggles with our kids as much as we do with our spouses.
The same day she came to me cribbing and crying about how the teens need more discipline, more structure, more rules, more determination and more motivation. I told her they need to be more resilient, because teens today have to endure much more than earlier times. They need to handle so much of pressure and be able to bounce back quickly and very often. They need to bend, so they do not break.
Most of us forget about our own teen years and how we would have coped with the same. Of course times were different, there was less manipulation and less white lies. There were more grandparents and simple teachers with simplified schools. We are programmed to forget the tough things in order to survive, but expecting our kids to perform where we have failed ourselves is a double standard.
The reason I have not forgotten my teenage experiences was that I have been working with so many teens since then. Even if I would have forgotten naturally, they have reminded me that this period brings with it many challenges. I have realised that today parents are too guilty. Too thinly spread. They have to juggle so much themselves and are confused as a generation. Besides this I am one of those lucky ones who had grandparents, and the active ones.
I went back to my friend and told her to hire a coach for Kabeer and boy it did work. It is an era of outsourcing. We are outsourcing everything for our children, education, sports, babysitters, online programmes, birthday events. Why then not a mentor, a connect that roots them. Why not outsource a program that builds the similar trust and warmth like a grandparent does. JUNIOR LIGHT ACADEMY is one programme that deals with students and create super performers.
Kabeer realised that he needs to connect with his parents at a human level. Often children treat their parents as machines, super machines, godly machines with no emotions and scope for goof ups. They need to understand that we all are a part of the same ecosystem and a parent can goof up as much as a child can. Yet value the experience to rectify goofs and learn out of their experiences. There is no harm in outsourcing a mentor that can work on your energy connects and deal with insane trigger points. After all you want the best for your child in every field.
LIGHT ACADEMY offers workshops and programmes to create super performers for 9-18 years