Whether you are the mother of an adolescent, or just recall being one, you are probably familiar with the tumultuous and awkward preteen years. Tears, drama, mood swings, shouting, sulking and generally hating our parents are not uncommon emotions. They can come and go in the blink of an eye, and when they hit, it is often with hurricane force. The ups and downs of puberty can be painful for parents and children alike. It can be a dreadful and uncomfortable time for a child and is no picnic for parents either.
Those who are in the midst of raising one of those precious little ticking time bombs can no doubt benefit from a little respite. The bad news is that this is a period that we all must go through in order to become the people we are meant to be. The good news is that it doesn't have to be as terrible as it seems.
What if there was something that you could do to ease the burden? What if there was a formula you could use to guide your children through this period of life in a more peaceful, natural and calm fashion? What if there was a way to help bring your loving and agreeable offspring back to you?
Thankfully, there is hope, and it isn't as hard as it seems! In just five simple steps, you can turn your peevish pubescent into an adolescent angel.
1. Proper nutrition
We all know that we are supposed to eat healthy. We should eat more fruits and vegetables, cut back on processed food and consume way less sugar. We may not always realize how crucial this actually is. We must commit to providing our children with adequate nutrition for their growing and changing bodies. This goes far beyond maintaining an ideal weight or rocking a pair of leggings.
When a body is lacking nutrients, it will not function properly. This can lead to a number of issues like inflammation, food allergies, mood fluctuations, depression, anxiety, acne and the list goes on and on. We cannot underestimate the power of really good quality food, and we must commit to doing our best when it comes to nourishing our youth. Just like junky food equals a junky attitude, healthy food inspires healthy behavior.
It is often difficult for us to get the nutrition that we need from food. Our busy lifestyles, coupled with the SAD (Standard American Diet), make getting what we need from diet alone quite tricky. Therefore, I would recommend a high quality multivitamin (youth 14 and over can take an adult dose, younger kids should take a multivitamin geared toward their age group specifically). There are a few good whole food based options, so do your research, and be prepared to pay a little extra for quality.
Sleep is extremely important in the life of an adolescent, and most do not get enough. Take simple measures to invoke a peaceful and relaxed environment, like not letting them go to bed with the television on. Better yet, make sure there is no TV in their room at all, and have them shut down their computers at least an hour before bedtime to allow for time to relax and unwind. I suggest encouraging them to leave their cell phone off or in another room when they go to bed so that emails, texts, Facebook posts, Instagram photos, and etc. are not causing them to wakeup or preventing them from sleeping in the first place. This alone will do wonders for their concentration and general disposition.
4. Teach them to chill out!
With all of those jumbled emotions tossing around, preteens need healthy outlets for their thoughts, feelings and frustrations. Encourage positive activities like journaling, meditation, prayer, yoga, exercise or other calming practices. Reflection, relaxation, rest and restoration are good for the soul and can help maintain stability and balance.
In addition, consider getting them a mentor if they don't have a trusted adult they feel like they can talk to. Mentoring works. Period!
The roller coaster of adolescent hormones is a ride that I think everyone wants off of. The irritability, depression, anxiety and ups and downs are certainly exhausting for all involved. There are drugs to address these issues (antidepressants and birth control pills, for example), but if you are not crazy about these methods and are looking for something a bit more natural, there is an alternative approach.
Getting a handle on hormones is no small task, but putting a little work in up front can go a long way toward sailing through the turbulent years peacefully. Get ahead of the curve by enlisting the help of a qualified medical professional (like an herbalist, acupuncturist or other integrative specialist). Or do some research of your own to find some gentle herbal remedies to implement at home.
There are some very safe herbs that can be used to stabilize hormones. They also help with the other symptoms of being "off balance," like acne, depression and anxiety. Don't be afraid to explore and use them for some very safe, effective and inexpensive solutions.
It is important to remember that the body is an intricate interconnected web, so working on one area will result in amazing improvements across the board. Improving the diet, adding a multivitamin, reducing stress and getting enough sleep are going to do great things for balancing the hormones as well. Implementing any of these five steps is going to be very beneficial. Implementing all five of them together just may change your world.
Bring the joy back into your home by trying it out today!