Empowering Teens & Tweens in Times of Challenge – Episode 9

In Uncategorized by Jo Davenport

How do we empower teens, tweens (and twenty-somethings), especially during challenging times?  I’m excited to have three guests share their insights and tips, as we aim to raise the state of resilience, health and happiness on a global level. 

Ellie Bambury is an author, speaker, mentor and workshop facilitator focused on the clarity and power we can gain over who we truly are and where we want to go, when we look at our lives from the perspective of a writer. Ellie wrote ‘The Big Sister Project’ following her time as an au pair in France.  The book’s impact on young people inspired Ellie to develop new tools and techniques to help others connect with their authentic voice, gain clarity in their own journey, and write their futures based on the rich lessons they can learn from their past. Her talks, workshops and mentoring programmes are called ‘Make Way’, playing on the concept of each of us making way for our true selves to thrive.

You can find Ellie here: https://www.instagram.com/thebigsisterproject_/ and https://the-bigsisterproject.com/

In this episode Ellie mentions:

  • If your teen is struggling to express themselves, encourage them to write and journal. If they’re struggling with that, asking them a guided question like “how did you feel when that happened today” can often start them off and give them direction about something they can do for themselves. It doesn’t have to be daily, but could be when you can see something is affecting their feelings. 
  • If you’re struggling to find the connection with your teen/tween, give them permission to have a moment to let everything out – even if it’s around topics or language that you wouldn’t usually approve of.  Don’t judge, just give them the space to let it all out.
  • If your teen/young adult is in a situation where they’re already in the middle of something and they’ve changed the end goal, get them to look at what else can be drawn from that and the other skills they’re getting along the way.  It’s not a waste of time because everything is a learning curve, so encourage them to take from it what they can. 

Terry Skeens is a coach, mentor and speaker from the United States, who has 20 years of experience coaching and mentoring teenage athletes, helping prepare them for some of their biggest moments in life! He has worked with teens all over the world and has a unique understanding of what issues they all share and the struggles that tie them together. He’s considered world class in his industry and works with 300+ teens on a weekly basis.

You can find Terry here: https://www.instagram.com/terryskeens/

In this episode Terry mentions:

  • Create a compliment box. Decorate it yourself, but you don’t have to share it with anyone else. Then write down the compliments you receive or give yourself and put them in that box, no matter how big or small they are.  And when you have that bad day, you bring that out and remind yourself how great you are.
  • Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure.  As a teen in that crossover period of trying to figure out what’s next, you have to find what fulfills you from the inside, what makes you feel special/happy and seek that out. Let that be the thing that shields you from what other people think you should do and be. Choose to be fulfilled, not just successful.

Amanda Betts, touted as a ‘Teen Whisperer’, is a speaker, mentor, coach and confidence builder for people from all walks of life.  She’s also the creator of #Heartspeak, a platform that upcycles preloved clothing, to keep, gift or sell, to raise funds, visibility and awareness for people, charities and projects, enabling Amanda in her work helping at-risk young people and women on probation help themselves. 

You can find Amanda here: https://www.instagram.com/heartspeak_worldwide/http://www.amandabetts.com/ and https://www.facebook.com/amandabettsnz/

In this episode Amanda mentions:

  • You can not change the rule of the ‘game’. You need to set the game, and then set the rules of that game for your household.  The next part of that is to then let them know what the consequences are if the rules get broken, especially for boys.  You can work through this as a family together, and just like a game like soccer, you know the game, know the rules and understand the consequences if you break the rules. 
  • Get it out. Amanda talks about how she created a safe space in the car where her son was able to say anything he wanted – free from judgement, and knowing that it would not be taken outside the car.  He has also been encouraged to tell Amanda what role he needed her to fill in that space eg: listener, to give advice, mother, friend etc. But, whatever the rules are that are jointly agreed for the game, they need to be stuck to.  Amanda recently did a wonderful Facebook Live with her son, which you can find here:  https://www.facebook.com/HeartspeakWorldwide/videos/2431885783768663
  • A key insight from her son, “when it comes from our purpose and end goal, sometimes you don’t need to know the direction, to go in a direction”. So sometimes what we do is what we’re meant to do at that time to lead us to a place in the future we can’t even imagine right now.  As parents it’s important to say to our kids, you don’t need to know your end goal, just take steps in a direction that feels right for you right now.  For teens, go with your gut and what feels right.  Stop worrying about the future and let it unfold.

Natalie Cutler-Welsh is your host, speaker, author, Impact Entrepreneur and mother of 3. Aka the Go to Girl and the Up Your Brave Mentor, she helps people to Amplify their Impact, business and wellness. Founder of Go to Girl Ltd and the Amplify Membership and Diamond level doTerra Leader, Nat helps people to #UptheirBrave, say what they WANT and make it happen! 

In this episode Natalie mentions:

  • Complaining is a lame excuse for not saying what you want, and can come out as naming, shaming and blaming. Instead use it as a window into stopping, and reflecting on what you do want.
  • If you don’t say how you feel and suppress your emotions, it can present health and wellness issues.  One of the reasons Nat is so super into essential oils is that you can  breathe it in, help acknowledge how you feel and then move toward how you want to feel. 

You can find Nat here: http://nataliecutlerwelsh.com/about/. You can also check out the other videos in the #UpYourBrave series here: http://nataliecutlerwelsh.com/video-series/.

You can also find more recommended tools and resources for empowering teens & tweens here.