The teenage years can be difficult to navigate – teens are developing social skills with not only their friends, but with other adults and members of the opposite sex. They will have successes and failures, and it’s important that they have a trusted individual that can guide them when it comes to fostering healthy relationships. Below are several tips that can be reinforced to help teens foster healthy relationships.
- Respect is key. Speak to others the way you wish to be spoken to, and that includes the tone of voice you use and the words you choose to communicate with. If conversations become too heated, it’s okay to take a step back, compose yourself, and return when your emotions are a little more under control.
- Establish boundaries. Know in advance what you are and aren’t willing to do in certain social situations, and stick to your decisions. When you stand up for what you believe in, others can respect you for it and may be inspired to establish their own standards in life.
- Practice conversations with a trusted individual. If you need to have a difficult conversation, practice what you are going to say beforehand with someone you know and trust. Knowing what you want to say will help keep your emotions in check and help you keep your thoughts organized and collected.
- Keep your social circle open to new individuals. We all like to have a few close friends, but having new acquaintances broadens our experiences and opens us up to new ideas, and exposes us to things we may not get the chance to experience otherwise.
- Helping others allows you to help yourself. When you are helping someone in need, it allows you to reflect on things and see things from another person’s perspective. Another’s life experiences may be totally different from your own, and you can each learn from the other.
- Try to avoid preconceived notions or prejudices towards others. Outward appearances are just that – you never know what is truly on the inside until you begin a conversation and start to get to know someone.