If you will just send me $29.99 or maybe even $79.99 or maybe three equal installments of $33.33, we will tell you how to fix your problem. There are folks on the radio and television hawking all kinds of solutions to the problems parents face every day. Whether it’s math, music or motivation, there is someone with a program that will “fix” your child’s problems.
I’m not saying that all of these programs are bad or useless… I’m just saying they are out there. And many times, it’s the parents’ problems.
Looking at a calendar, I see that I have a little more than three years left of teenagers… I’ve been lucky thus far, in my opinion. About the only issue that I have is the one who sleeps on the sofa all afternoon and stays up late to work on “his music.”
Homework and yard work have to fall into that equation somewhere. He sometimes has a hard time understanding some of these real-world equations and prioritizing his time. I would be lying if I said I never had some of those same issues – I did.
My Daddy explained most things pretty well to me and he didn’t send his money off to some motivation guru to get help. Daddy simply told me the way it was going to be, and that’s the way it was.
As a parent, I’m pretty good at telling my children “the way it is going to be,” however I sometimes fail on the following through part of it. Admittedly, that is the most difficult part – following through. It’s the part that is no fun at all…
We live in a time when it seems like many others do the same thing… They tell you one thing and later pretend like they didn’t say it. In other words, they move the goal posts on you or even pretend the goal posts weren’t there.
There is a lot of information on the internet and in books for parents who need help motivating their teenagers. I decided to take a look at what one group had to say that might help me to follow through. I didn’t pay for the advice – it was free.
These folks had some helpful hints to make sure that your follow through was “effective.”
The first “hint” was to make sure that you keep your comments short, simple and effective. They gave an example of something like, “I noticed that you haven’t had the chance to walk the dog. Would you please do that now?”
This is nice.
However, I don’t remember my Daddy ever asking me to do anything twice. I’m sure he did have to ask me twice one time and I didn’t want to remember him having to do it then and never want to remember it again.
The second hint noted that you should respond to any objections from your teenager with, “What was our agreement?”
My Daddy told me what to do, I trusted him – I did it. I did it because I wanted to make him happy, proud and continue living “under his roof.”
The third hint tells you what to do if the second hint doesn’t work. The experts note to use “nonverbal” communication such as pointing at your watch, smiling or giving them up a hug.
This is one hint my Daddy would agree with them on. As a matter of fact, I think he might just skip hint number 2 and go straight to this nonverbal communication part. Oh goodness gracious – he wouldn’t have said a word. Daddy didn’t have to do this, but there was no doubt he would have picked up a stick or a belt or used some other sort of “nonverbal communication.”
Hint 4 gives advice on what to do when your teenager does what you have asked them to do. You are supposed to say, “Thank you for keeping our agreement.” I think saying “thank you” is always good.
All I know is that I wanted to please my Daddy - that was my goal in life. Somewhere in that “fear equation,” Daddy made that happen. That’s what good fathers do.
I was thinking about this just the other day and how proud my Daddy would have been. I moved all of the cars out of the driveway except for my teenaged son’s vehicle. I left it at the bottom of the driveway next to the house.
When the fellow in the mulch truck arrived with the big load of hardwood mulch to be spread in the beds around the house, I had him dump it right in the middle of the driveway.
Then I told my son that he could leave as soon as he could get his car out.
Read more stories at www.CranksMyTractor.com.