OH! Magazine - Australian Version October 2018 - Page 25

HOW TO INSPIRE YOUR TEENAGER Dr John Demartini explains the power of inspiration. veryone regardless of age, culture, or gender, lives by a unique set of values – a hierarchy of values – including your teenager. E As a parent, it is unwise to attempt to inspire your teen by autocratically projecting your values onto them, or by forcefully telling them what they must or must not do. They are likely to become hesitant and frustrated and procrastinate, because whatever they are being told to do is not linked to, or congruent with what they feel is currently most important to them (i.e. their highest values). The thing to always remember is that your teen wants to be loved for who they are and not necessarily what you want to make them. The wisest way, therefore, to inspire your teen is to first help them determine their true and current highest values, so you can then help them fill their day with meaningful activities that are congruent with those values. When your teen aligns their daily actions with that which is truly most important to them, their greater competence will be awakened. This, in turn, then allows them to fill their day with spontaneously inspired actions that activate the self- governing executive centre in their forebrain, and not just their amygdala. In addition, wherever your teen is required to commit their time and effort – such as at school, university, or work – help them understand how these daily activities, duties or responsibilities can ultimately help, and are helping, them achieve their highest values. In order to raise an inspired and empowered teenager: When you help them align what they are doing with what is most important to them, they will be able to more clearly see how doing these activities will help them fulfil what is truly most important to them – their highest values. The result of this is that they will become more engaged and self-starting, and less resistant. • Help them transcend the fantasy of perfectionism. • Help your teenager understand that life always has a balance, and that every challenging situation serves a purpose and enhances their development. It is important that you allow your teen the freedom to explore and experience what is meaningful to them. When doing so, they naturally embrace the challenges that come with it. By encouraging your child to go after inspiring and meaningful challenges, they develop the habit and confidence to solve those challenges, and the many more that will accompany their evolving life. If they don’t pursue challenges that are inspiring, their days can become filled with other distracting challenges that aren’t. • Balance challenge with support. • Allow – or even encourage – your teen to face inspired challenges, and provide them with a loving balance of parental challenge and support. • Acknowledge, communicate and work within your teenager’s current highest values. Many people would equate giving your teen ‘freedom’ with the vision of youths running wild like impulsive animals; however, what we are talking about is teenagers who are free to do what inspires and is deeply meaningful to them (not impulsive compensations). Keep in mind, many immediately gratifying or addictive behaviours are simply compensations for not having the day filled with what is truly most meaningful and inspiring. As we said ealier, when your teen fills their days with high priority actions that inspire them, their days won’t fill up with low priority distractions that don’t. It’s important that you learn your child’s highest values (you can do this for free, here) and discuss with them what goals are inspiring to them, and what they can pursue that will help fulfil those vital aims. Dr John Demartini Dr John Demartini is a renowned entrepreneur and human behaviour expert, founder of The Demartini Institute, and the author of 40 books that have been translated into 31 languages. He has featured in films including The Secret, appearing on Larry King Live, and regularly contributes to Oprah Magazine. For more information visit www.drdemartini.com OH! MAGAZINE ( OCTOBER 2018 ) 25