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To Change Your Teen… You Must First Accept Your Teen

If your teen is exhibiting behaviors you want to change, you must first understand a few principles:

  • People – including teenagers – will not change their behavior for others if they don’t feel accepted by those others first.
  • Non-acceptance, along with disapproval, criticism and disrespect, leads to resistance.
  • Teens will typically maintain the behavior that has been targeted for change if they believe the people who are requesting the change find them unacceptable as they are.
  • Before you try to get your teen to change a behavior, try to find at least one aspect of his or her behavior that is acceptable, approvable, or creditable and/or respectable, and provide abundant acceptance, approval, credit and respect for it.
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