Top 5 Incentives for Motivating Your Teen
After years of working with teens and parents, I'm hearing the same story repeat itself within each family...
"Help! "I can't get my teen to do anything."
"My teen won't help around the house."
"My teen refuses to study or apply herself at school."
"My teen never follows through!"
You feel like you have no control and you are constantly offering empty threats or endless encouragement that doesn't seem to work.
That's why I've decided to create this Top 5 List of Incentives That Will Motivate Your Teen. Things that we often forget about.
First let me start out by explaining what an Incentive is...
An incentive is something you add to increase motivation. And let's be honest, we all need incentives. An incentive is not a "bribe", which I hear parents frequently complain that they don't want to feel they have to bribe their teens to do anything. And an incentive Does Not have to cost you money!
Let's be real! For us, an incentive to clean the kitchen every night is that we get up in the morning and have a fresh counter to work on. Our incentive for cleaning the toilet is that we don't have to worry when we have unexpected guests come in and use our bathrooms. An incentive for getting up and going to work everyday is that we take home a paycheck.
Teens need incentives too, and they are going to be different from me and you because let's face it, they are not adults so they don't think the same way.
So without further delay, here are my Top 5 Incentives for Motivating Your Teen:
1. Device Privileges
Does your teen get unlimited usage on their/your device? Why? Who pays for this service? You do right?! Limit your teens device usage based on the amount of motivation they have to accomplish assigned tasks. If they are not doing homework, why do they get free reign to text their friends or surf social media? Besides, this is often what they are spending time doing vs. doing the tasks you have assigned. Did they refuse to clean the kitchen? Well then you refuse to supply their network to their friends.
2. Remove Netflix
How much time is your teen spending binge watching their favorite tv series or movie? I'd say that removing this distraction would certainly free up some time to let's say do some studying or vacuum the living room. Right?
3. Friend Time
Teens love to hang out with other teens. Whether it be in the community or setting up camp in each other's homes binge-watching Netflix while eating up all the food in your house. Let me remind you that this is a PRIVILEGE, not a necessity. Limit your teens time with friends when they are not following through with your expectations.
4. Car Privileges
This one is a big one! Guess what-?! You do not have to provide your teen with a vehicle, gas money, or a ride if they are not doing their fair share around the house or if they are slacking off at school. Set an expectation they have to meet in order to receive this privilege.
5. Alone Time
While some alone time is healthy for a teen and privacy is important, this is also one of those privileges you earn. If your teen is not following through, then their attempts to ignore the family and hideout in their rooms should be stopped. If the family is pitching in on Saturday to clean up the yard, your teen should not get a free pass to hang out in their room and text friends. There are lots of ways to solve this solution, and if you need some creative help, let me know.
Is there something more specific you are struggling with? Comment below and let me know what it is. I am always looking for ways to create content specific to you.
So there you have it!
P.S. Click Here to receive a free mindfulness activity to help your teen cope with overwhelming emotions.