New Year’s Resolutions for Parents of Teenagers

It’s that time of year. This year, we tell ourselves, will be the year we lose 20 pounds, quit smoking, or give up or at least cut back on caffeine, and this will be the year when we take back control of our families. You tell yourself resolutely that 2013 will be the year that the fighting, petty arguments and sullen attitudes stop. Look at you go! – Darla Noble

Don’t lose that momentum
Make 2013 the year when you truly do live up to those commitments… well, at least a few of them… especially the one about taking back your family.

HOW TO MAKE A NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION RESOLUTE
THE WORD ‘RESOLUTE’ MEANS TO BE FIRM AND DETERMINED TO STAY THE COURSE. THAT’S WHAT YOU WANT TO DO, RIGHT? SO LET’S WORK TOGETHER TO MAKE THAT HAPPEN

  1. Write your resolution down and post it throughout the house. Print it out on pretty paper or on a pretty note card and tape it to your bathroom mirror. Put it on your refrigerator along with everything else – just make sure you can see it. Write it on the inside of a pretty greeting card and set it on your desk at work. Frame it and set it by the kitchen sink where you’ll see it as you prepare meals and do dishes.
  2. Make your resolution known to members of your household. If you are determined to take back your family and enhance your relationship with your teenager, let them know. Tell them you are committed to being a better parent (this tells them you are taking partial responsibility for any problems that exist between you) and that the changes you make are for the benefit of everyone involved. Ask for their cooperation.
  3. Remind your family from time to time of your resolution and give progress reports. Mailing or emailing cards or messages to family members expressing thanks, concern or simply reminding them of your love and commitment to the family on a regular basis is effective and appreciated by all.
  4. Don’t look at lapses as defeat. Every resolution has its setbacks. Don’t stress over it – just pick up and go on. It’s important to hold yourself and others accountable for relapses, but then put the past in the past and go forward. Remember… you need to focus on where you’re going – not where you’ve been.

WHAT RESOLUTIONS SHOULD I MAKE
RESOLVING TO TAKE MAKE THINGS BETTER BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR TEENAGER IS A PRETTY GENERIC STATEMENT. IT LEAVES THE DOOR WIDE OPEN FOR FAILURE AND NEGLECT. INSTEAD, BE SPECIFIC… VERY SPECIFIC

  1. We will set up a system of chores for each family member to be responsible for. This will give everyone more time to enjoy activities and will give each family member the opportunity to contribute to making our home run smoothly.
  2. We will establish a family contract to be mutually agreed upon by all.
  3. We will treat each other with respect and kindness at all times.
  4. We will express our love and appreciation for each other on a daily basis.
  5. Each family member will be expected to do a random act of kindness for another member of the family each week.
  6. We will recognize and respect the fact that our family is a unit and that we belong to one another treating each other with the love, respect and appreciation we each deserve.
  7. Yelling, name – calling, unkind words, and disrespect for each other’s property will not be tolerated.
  8. Communication will be a top priority. We will inform one another of where our, who we are with, and when we can be expected to return home abouts at all times. No exceptions.

You will notice that the resolutions are not just a set of rules for your teen. They are family resolutions – holding every family member accountable. Making resolutions in this manner is not only a more effective way to produce the desired results, but it sends a clear message to your teenager that your intentions truly are to rebuild your family – not make their life miserable. So with all that being said… HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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