Making Good Choices: A Guide for Teens

​Helping Teens Make Good Choices in Today’s World
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A great way to help your teen start making good choices is to help them understand how emotion plays a big part in decision-making. For example, fear may prevent them from trying something new whilst excitement may cause them to underestimate the real risks. Writing a pro and con list is one of the most effective ways of tackling a problem with logic rather than emotion.

Once your teen grasps this, it is likely that they will be more inclined to make informed decisions and think through a solution before committing to it. Finally, the key to making decisions is to always remind your teenager that there is no such thing as a bad choice.

The difference between 'know' and 'do'

Helping your teenager make good decisions Share Jan 9, Guidance One of the most effective ways to help your teenager make the best decisions is by providing plenty of guidance, but without overdoing it. Be there! Identify options Encourage your teen to identify their options. Write a pro and con list Once your teen has written a list of options for a specific problem, get them to identify the potential pros and cons of each one. Discuss emotion A great way to help your teen start making good choices is to help them understand how emotion plays a big part in decision-making. There is never a bad choice Finally, the key to making decisions is to always remind your teenager that there is no such thing as a bad choice.

Read More. These are times when teens may be more likely to act on emotion instead of thinking things through more carefully.

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No one knows more about your teen … than your teen! And why this is so valuable. It shows you believe your teen is capable. This empowers a sense of pride and know-how. Work together to determine how much of your input any given situation may require. Maybe none! Avoid jumping in and making your teen feel less than capable.

But sometimes the best way for your teen to become an expert is through trial and error. That means making mistakes.

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And learning how to bounce back. Both teens and parents have important contributions to make to the decision-making process. Parents can provide information to teens about different choices, consider the pros and cons of each option, and offer emotional support. They may also have a role to play in helping to implement whatever decision has been made. Encouraging youth to share this information as well as their opinions ensures that teens and parents are on the same page.

Parents are important resources as teens both think and talk through decisions. Guide your teen to weigh the pros and cons of various options and consider the potential consequences of certain actions. Encourage teens to participate in decisions. Doing so will prepare them with the skills needed to make independent choices in the future. Model how you thoughtfully make important decisions in your own life.

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When you seek advice from a friend or talk through options with your partner or spouse, you show how partnering with others supports your ability to make important decisions. Even the best thought-out decisions can end up leading to consequences different than hoped. This is when teens need parents the most. Adolescence is the time to learn to fail and recover. Failure offers opportunities for new, wiser decisions to be made that are informed by experience. This is a good thing! Coming down hard on teens when things go wrong may prevent them from telling you what goes badly in their lives.

On the other hand, framing mistakes as opportunities for growth guides them to try out a second hopefully better! Elyse Salek, M. Drawing on her expertise in human development, Elyse writes about topics ranging from teen development, to peer pressure, to discipline. Work Together in Making Decisions We are all faced with decisions, both big and small, on a daily basis. Discussion Tip.

Stress and strong emotions make it difficult to make thoughtful decisions. Remaining calm increases the chances that teens will make wise choices. Ways to Promote Smart Decisions Consider these communication strategies to equip teens with the skills needed to make wise, healthy decisions. The Importance of Working Together Both teens and parents have important contributions to make to the decision-making process.

How Teens Make Decisions

Build A Decision-Making Partnership Parents are important resources as teens both think and talk through decisions. When Things Go Wrong Even the best thought-out decisions can end up leading to consequences different than hoped. Subscribe and Stay Informed.