The last thing a pouty teen may want to do is get up and move, but it’s one of the best ways he can feel better. Exercise can help burn through anger, frustration, and anxiety. It also promotes better sleep.
So hand your teen his earbuds and send him outside to walk, run, or shoot hoops. It’s a chance to blow off some steam, and he’ll learn a healthy way to deal with stress for the future.
Even better, lace up your shoes and join him outside. Even if you don’t talk or workout together, the example you set is powerful.
Listen, Don’t Lecture
You may be older and wiser, but resist the urge to lecture your teen. It’s more likely to cause hostility and rebellion. Instead, practice "active listening."
This means "listening with an open mind without interrupting, being able to communicate back what you heard that person say," says Alan Delamater, PhD, director of clinical psychology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. "Basically it means you are not talking as much as you are listening."
Teens also like to talk about things they are experts in. So ask them to teach you about something, like technology, Radovic says. It's a fairly safe bet that they understand Snapchat better than you do.
Keep Your Cool
When you feel anxious or angry, especially if the cause is your teen, take a breath. Find your own ways to calm down and handle your emotions without lashing out.Remember that sleep and exercise are just as important for you as they are for your kids.
Plus, you’ll model for your teen some healthy ways to deal with stress.
"If you want to be an effective parent of a teenager, take care of yourself," Delamater says.