Parenting Teen/Tweens over Christmas - part four

How to ease the stress, manage expectations and enjoy the big day.

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Read part one here, part two here and part three here

Tip Eight -Get clear on your limits

How often do you really set limits when it comes to spending money on our children at Christmas?

So this tip is very clear and I know it may seem obvious, but most Parents don’t do it.

Set a limit you are willing to spend on your child and let them know.

Tell them that you want to feel good about Christmas too and that you are only willing to spend this much because Christmas is about so much more. Be very clear that no matter what, you will not go over that limit.

No, my guess is that you may have already gone over your limit, so put some things away for next year or put this tip in your hat for the next birthday or Christmas.

Take a look at what you have bought them this year, have you gone overboard and if so, why? Because you just want to or because you feel you need to? Is spending money on them feeding some need in yourself to be liked and wanted? Be really honest with yourself.

Tip Nine -Giving and Receiving

For every up there is a low, for every yin there is a yang, it is just the way the world works, so how are your teaching your child for every receipt there is a giving?

I play this game all the time with my daughters. I teach her about giving and receiving and how they fit together. How, if you want to let something into your life, you need to let go of something in return. So when she asks for something, I ask what she wants to give in return. Now I don’t do this to be mean or have her think about lack, I do it to open her up to the fact that money moves - it is not stagnant. I want her to understand the concept of giving and not just that of receiving. I can tell you, it has an amazing effect. She often changes her mind, she realises that she does not want it that much so she leaves it. When she wrote her Christmas list this year, the first thing that she asked for was something for someone else. So, use this concept, start a system of giving versus receiving. They may not respond at first, but keep trying it. Use it yourself first, start showing your child how you yourself incorporate it.

So this Christmas make a stand, decide that you are going to raise a responsible independent young adult who cares about others and is not just a ‘wanting machine’.

Tip Ten- And Relax

Don’t get so uptight about things, let Christmas just happen – remember what this is all really about, the celebration of life, so go on, celebrate!

Wishing you all the best for the season :)

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Sarah Newton

Author, Speaker and Youth Coach

Sarah Newton has shared her innovative wisdom with millions who have tuned into her TV and Radio shows, followed her writing and listened to her unconventional talks. She has been described as a catalyst, daring all she meets to break out from social norms and follow their own path. She has worked in youth empowerment for over 30 years, first as a police officer and then eventually running her own business, via a stint at Disney World in Florida. Sarah has a no-nonsense, down-to-earth approach to solving most youth-associated problems, based on tactics that work, not rhetoric out of a book. She often is the only one in the room to stand by her viewpoint and tends to think the opposite from everyone else. Star of ITV’s “My Teen’s A Nightmare, I’m Moving Out” and author of “Help! My Teenager is an Alien – the everyday situation guide for parents”, Sarah has just teamed up with her daughter to write a novel to help girls with their body image issues, she has also written for The Guardian, The Huffington Post and the Daily Mail. Sarah also sits on the UK board of the Arbonne Charitable Foundation and is an ambassador for Girls Out Loud.