Self-Discipline Example #1
Common Phrase = What's your plan?
Let's jump to the self-discipline stage for a bit. As teen years approach, it’s time to seriously contemplate how to use the self-discipline mindset as often as possible. The self-discipline mindset acknowledges that your teen’s prefrontal cortex is developed enough to do its job, which is to wrestle with natural forces to find a mindful balance--first for Self and then for others.
In order to allow the prefrontal cortex to do its job, parents wisely educate teens on choices and outcomes, but intentionally and mindfully grant them decision-making power. So, our primary disciplinary response after detecting an issue that feels concerning is, “What’s your plan with _____?” (this is AFTER we’ve used mindfulness to calm our own churning stomachs, racing hearts, and frantic minds btw😱🙈)
This statement--buckle your seatbelts🚀--is actually intended to give your teen FREEDOM to choose how to proceed down the risky path of self-discovery and balance. It sends the message that: Mom or Dad aren’t going to decide who you should become. You need to search your soul and decide for yourself.
Of course this feels scary at times. However, the primary purpose of the “What’s your plan” phrase is also to alert your teen’s prefrontal cortex that crunchtime is here so “Get into the game! Now that mom and dad are stepping back, primitive impulses can’t win without you.”
Here are a few examples:
“Can we talk about your school work? I know you’ve got that big project coming up. What’s your plan for fitting it into your schedule? What support do you need?”
“Can you remind me which day you plan to mow the lawn this week?”
“You’ll be hanging out with friends this weekend. Can we talk through a few scenarios that might come up so you can have a chance to plan how you might handle them?”
And swipe left to see our 12yo’s personal plan that solved any concerns about getting to the bus on time.⏰😅
In general, the idea behind the self-discipline mindset is to shift accountability to your child’s shoulders so their prefrontal cortex senses a true need to activate and develop to it’s true potential with time.
As always, feel free to dm me with personal questions. ❤