How to Stop Your Teenage Child from Refusing to Do Anything

Does your teenager refuse to do anything? If so, you’re not alone. The good news is that their behavior is not necessarily a reflection of their intelligence.  

In this post, we’ll share seven tips to help you teach your teenager how to be responsible adults and help them become the person you want them to be. So, if you’re looking for ways to teach your teenager how to be a responsible adult, check out this post today.

Tactics for dealing with a Defiant Teenager

Adolescence can be a tough phase of life, and it is during this time, most teenagers defy their parents and test their limits. The youngsters are trying to figure out who they are and are finding ways of being independent.

However, while they try to be independent, many teenagers lose control of their emotions, get angry, frustrated, rebellious, and argumentative. While this behavior is considered normal, that does not make it an exception and should not be tolerated by the parents.

However, parents need to work with their children and develop tactics that help teenagers get through this crucial phase of their life. 

Identify what you (parents) can use as Incentives or Rewards

Try to come up with things that you can use as an incentive or reward. Observe what your child enjoys and cares about. And don’t take his word for it, because usually, the answer will be: ‘I don’t care about anything’, pay attention to his actions.

Parents need to observe whether their child texts their friends, use the computer, watches TV, or play video games. In addition to this, try to find out if your child;

  • Likes watching Movies?
  • Likes going fishing?

Make a list of all the things your child enjoys. Of course, what’s more, important is talking to your child, having a chat once in a while, and making sure you understand his requirements.

Take the Electronic Items out of the Child’s Room

There are times when parents need to take strict actions. If a teenager is underachieving and not living up to the mark, all the electronic items should be removed from his room. A room is a place for teenagers where they can withdraw.

If your child spends a lot of time in the room, ensure that his computer is in the living room. So to use that computer, the child will need to leave the room. This would also force the child to engage with other people and socialize.

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If your child is an underachiever, there should not be video games and television in his room. His phone should be taken away as well.

Make Your Child Earn the Privileges

Unmotivated children should be held accountable by their parents. Parents should ensure that their child earns every privilege, especially if they are willing to take responsibility. Allow your child to play video games only if he has completed his homework. 

In the same way, make your child earn his cellphone daily. This is how life works, and teenagers need to learn that, sometimes, unfortunately, the hard way.

Talk about What your Child Wants

When the times are generally good, sit down with your child and talk about what he would like to have in their life. Try to sneak in a few different ideas in the conversation so that your child can think about things he wants to achieve in life. You can start the conversation like this:

‘So what type of car do you like? Jeeps?

Try to get your child to talk about what he likes. Then, later on in the conversation, say something like this:

‘I care about what you like, and I want you to get your favorite car, but you will not get it until and unless you complete your homework.’

As parents, you should have such conversations with your child from pre-adolescent and onwards.

Don’t Shout or Argue with your Child.

If you are shouting at your child, you are losing the battle, which would create a perception in your child’s mind that he is in control. The truth is, when people start shouting, they run out of all solutions. 

If you have an underperforming child, you need to be cool and calm with him. Pleading, arguing, or trying to belittle him will have no positive outcome. Instead, you can try to reason or negotiate with your child about their feelings.  It is fine to ask your child: Is there something wrong?

Tell Your Child What He Does Matters to You

As a parent, you need to convey the message to your child by stating that what he does matters to you. You can say something like this:

‘I deeply care about you, whatever you do matters to me, I want you to do great, but I cannot make you do it or force you to do it, but I still love you’. The concept of ‘It matters to me’ is effective, because relationships are motivating. However, you also need to understand that your child is a different person and has his personality. 

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Do not do your Child’s Work.

Children are smart, and at an early age, they learn when they act helpless or just give up, someone will help them out. Acting helpless is a tactic kids use to get other people to do their work. This concept is called ‘Learned Helplessness,’ and parents believe that their child is truly helpless over time. 

When teenagers use shortcuts, they don’t learn to be independent. In fact, in families where teenagers are prone to taking shortcuts, you will find that those teenagers were just not allowed to be independent. Instead, these teenagers were probably made to do things differently, and all choices were made for them beforehand.

Eventually, these teenagers gives up and submit to their family. Regardless of your child is acting helpless or not, you, as a parent, you need to stop doing his work or make choices on his behalf. Don’t do his homework, his laundry, his chores, and let him make his own choices. Give your child the freedom he deserves.

Use a Structure and Set Deadlines

Ensure that your child knows when to do homework and chores. Teenagers need to have a schedule and a structure. Say this to your child:

‘Finish the chores by 3 to 4 pm, and then you will have free time until dinner. And during your free time, you can do anything.’

There are other possibilities as well, try saying this:

‘If you finish your homework in X amount of time, then you can go to your cousin’s place on Sunday.’

Not everything your child does will cost you money, so be innovative and creative.

Teenagers Can be Tough to Deal With

There is no doubt that teenagers can be tough to deal with, and on most occasions, parents find it hard to cope with them. However, parents still need to come with ways of dealing with their children; they need to set rules, set a timetable, and even discipline their children if necessary.

This article will help you develop tactics that will enable you to have some form of understanding with your child. In the end, parents want what’s best for them, but they need to help their children through testing times. 

Originally posted 2021-12-09 21:06:00.