Tuning in to Teen™ is a parenting program that focuses on emotions and is designed to assist parents to establish stronger relationships with their teenage children. The program provides parents with a greater understanding of their teen's emotional experiences while teaching specific skills that can assist in being supportive, empathic and staying connected with the young person. It further aims to improve parent's emotional awareness, regulation and communication style and provide them with an opportunity to reflect on their own emotion socialisation experience. Tuning in to Teens™ aims to prevent problems developing and enhance emotional and behavioural functioning.

Youth Services staff facilitate two Tuning Into Teens Groups per term. If you would like to register your interest to the program please complete the below form and one of our friendly facilitators will be in contact with you with availability of upcoming programs. In order to be eligible for the program, you must live-work-study or recreate in Wyndham.

If you have further questions about the program you can either call the Youth Resource Centre on (03) 8734 1355 or email tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au.

Programs and Webinars

Tuning In To Teens Online Webinar  EVENT CANCELLED
Where:
When: Tuesday 22nd June, 6:30-7:30pm
Book Now

 

Tuning in To Teens 8 week Program - FULLY BOOKED
Where:  Online utilising MS teams
When: Wednesday 21st July – 8 September, 6-8pm
For further information please email tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

 

Tuning In to Teens 8 Week Program - FULLY BOOKED
Where: Online utilising MS teams
When: Tuesday 20th July – 7th September, 6-8pm
For further information please email tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Tuning in to Teens Online Webinar
Where: Online Live event
When: 9th September, 6:30-7:30pm
Book Now

Tuning In to Teens 8 Week Program
Where: Online utilising MS teams
When: Tuesday 12th October – 30th November, 6-8pm
For further information please email tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Tuning Into Teen Tips

Anger, a source of information

anger tuning in teens

Quite often we refer to emotions as good and bad. By labelling emotions this way, we place a negative connotation on the emotions that may feel unpleasant for us, like anger. 

Reframing the way in which we label emotions can be helpful in removing negative stigma attached to any of our emotions. We like to refer to emotions as pleasant or unpleasant.

All emotions, whether pleasant or unpleasant, serve a purpose and are crucial for our survival, including anger.

If you hear someone screaming and yelling with clenched fists are you likely to listen? 
 
Sometimes, anger can send the message to stay away. Quite often this can be what the person experiencing this unpleasant emotion needs. For the most part, it’s important to acknowledge that anger lets us know that someone has overstepped our boundaries and to feel safe and comfortable we need some space. However, even as we acknowledge this, it’s important to communicate assertively what we are angry about at a time when we are calm and ready to express ourselves respectfully. 

Now that we understand a little more about what message anger may be sending let’s try and practise using the words pleasant and unpleasant when we refer to emotions. This can make a huge change in the way in which we think about certain emotions especially those that feel unpleasant. 

Remember all emotions are OK, they send us a message so we can react in a way that keeps us safe and thriving. 

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Repair

tuning tuesdays repair

There is no denying that at a time like this, there may be some added tension in the home. We are all trying to work, study and be entertained, all under what may all of a sudden feel like a very small roof.  

Of course, our patience is going to be tested & we may find ourselves bickering and arguing about things we never knew were important or those little habits that you are able to tolerate on a ‘normal’ day now feel like the MOST annoying thing in the world.

Have you noticed yourself snapping, criticising or complaining more than usual? Are you then left sitting in those uncomfortable feelings of resentment or guilt after a disagreement with a loved one in the home and wish you could remove the tension or undo the argument? 

Unfortunately, we don’t have any tips on how to turn back time, but we do have some suggestions on how we can ‘repair’ as a family following any kind of conflict. 

First of all, we want to wait for a time when we are all calm to initiate a conversation about what has happened. 
Through this conversation both parties need to have a chance to voice how they felt. We encourage you to use ‘I’ statements to avoid blaming. ‘I felt hurt because…’ I was feeling frustrated when…’ 

Listen empathetically when others are speaking and where you can, take responsibility for the role you played in the confrontation. It can also be helpful to let the person know how you would handle the situation differently in the future. 

This may sound like ‘I am sorry that I raised my voice during our argument. I was feeling overwhelmed and upset. Next time I will take a moment for myself to calm down and then come back to discuss how I am feeling.’ 

It may not be possible to avoid all confrontation in the home, but we can certainly repair after moments of tension. 

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Self Care

Tuning in Tuesday - Self Care

In order to be there and support our young person, it’s important to frame our own thinking.

Our tip for this week is a nice reminder to self-care and be kind to yourself

Our internal dialogue frames our thoughts, feelings and behaviour.

Be kind, try not to give yourself a hard time.   

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

For more information and more tips visit:  https://youthwyndham.com/tint

Photo Credit @stacieswift

Emotional Resilience

resilience

This week we are encouraging you to tune in to emotional resilience. This will help your young person to manage those strong emotions like change, fear, worry and disappointment.

As we know, talking about emotions around failure can be really difficult and it’s important for us to tune in to these feelings with a trustworthy and reliable adult.

A little reminder is to remember to role model this so that our young people can observe and learn. It’s important to acknowledge emotional resilience in ourselves and our young people to ensure emotional growth.

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Image Credit: Tutor Doctor.

Adolescent Development

There’s no denying that adolescence is a challenging time for both young people and those around them. 

It can be helpful to acknowledge that there are a wide range of developmental factors that are at play which often cause confusion, lack of understanding or frustration towards young people. 

Sleep is one area that is often misunderstood. 
Have you noticed that your teen, all of a sudden has very different sleep patterns in comparison to when they were a child?

Staying up later, fatigued in the morning unable to concentrate on tasks, does this sound familiar?  This can be due to the decrease in melatonin or more commonly referred to as the “sleep hormone,” across adolescence. This decrease can make it more difficult for young people to get to sleep and often lead to them falling asleep later in the evening. 

Often the understanding that there is something physical behind young peoples’ behaviour can help us to develop more empathy and understanding around this distinct stage of life they are experiencing and the behaviours they may display. 

We often have parents asking us “why is it that my teen now relies so heavily on their peers rather than us as parents? This can be difficult for parents and carers to adjust to. 

Have you noticed that suddenly, your young person is almost like a lawyer in a courtroom, debating absolutely everything that they possibly can? This can be extremely frustrating for parents and carers and super difficult to navigate. 

During adolescence the teens brain is going through some important growth and changes. Apart of this growth is that they are developing their logical and abstract thinking skills. This often means that teens will begin to think differently causing the onset of a wealth of questions and demanding answers as to why things are the way they are. This might sound familiar especially when it comes to challenging the boundaries set by parents and carers. “Why do I have to be home before dark?” 

One way to help parents and caregivers through this stage is to pose the question. “What type of adult do I want my young person to be?” If the answer is independent, self-confident, open minded, responsible, or creative, then we want this abstract part of the brain to develop to its full capacity. Part of this development involves practising these news skills and ways of thinking. What better place to practise these than in the home where it’s safe?

Sometimes the reframe of our thinking can help us to feel less escalated when our teen challenges the world around them including the boundaries we set. We might switch our internal dialogue from “Why do they have to question everything all the time,” to “they’re developing their ability to be curious about the things that affect them in their world.” 

Adolescence is a huge transitional time for young people. They are trying to navigate their identity in the world around them. As parents and carers, we often feel the same, trying to navigate our way through a challenging time in life, the teenage years. 
Understanding the difficulties and challenges faced by our young people can often lead to us feeling exhausted, confused and frustrated. Its important that as adults in teens lives we take the time we need to self-care so that we can be the best versions of ourselves. 

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Self-Care

This week, we encourage you to practice some self-care, not only on your own but with your teen.

Try doing something they like at the start of the week and then something you like near the end of the week.

This is a great time to have some conversations with your teen around emotions and how they make them feel.

Use this as an opportunity to discuss what they are feeling when they are needing self-care, this will help in the future when you may need to support them and their mental health.

Remember your self-care is important too!  😊

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program or would like to contact us; feel free to email us at: tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au

Self Care and Reframing Thinking

Self Care and Reframing Thinking

Quite often our internal dialogue can get in the way of having a positive interaction with our young people.

Have you ever thought prior to engaging in a conversation with your young person “I’m not good at this emotional stuff, I’m not going to do it right!”

We encourage you to shift that internal dialogue to be kind to yourself. You might reframe that thought with “I’m going to give this a go, I’ll do my best, I come from a place of love and support.”

When we shift our internal dialogue, we challenge our negative thoughts. By challenging these thoughts, we can shift our emotional experience toward certain situations that we often shy away from or feel we don’t have the skills to navigate.

This is an excellent way to self-love which is something we often forget to do.

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program or would like to contact us; feel free to email us at: tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au  

Credit: Brene Brown

Emotional Intelligence

As an emotion coaching parent, we can support our teens to developing emotional intelligence.

But why is emotional intelligence so important?

Emotional intelligence is considered a good predictor of outcomes as I.Q. This is because Teens with a higher degree of emotional intelligence have shown to have improved in areas such as emotional, social, behavioural and academic outcomes. It is also known that they have lower levels of physiological arousal which helps them cope better with physical changes of puberty and they then grow up to be more emotionally intelligent adults.

As emotionally intelligent adults, this results in higher life satisfaction, better relationships and lower rates of psychological difficulties.

What kind of adult do you want your Teen to be?

Learn to be an emotion coaching parent through the Tuning into Teens program and email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au to register or visit https://youthwyndham.com/tint

Mental Maps

Tuning in Tuesdays: Mental Maps

This week we encourage you to be interested in having a mental map of your teen’s life.

A mental map is having an idea of what your teen’s day to day life is like. For example, they may have an exam coming up or a couple of parties. 

The great thing about having a mental map of what our teens have going on, is that we can support them in times that could be stressful and helping earlier rather than after situation occurs. For example, if we know about the exams coming up, we can understand that they may be more irritable and studying more, then we can check in and see if they need some extra support.

We want to avoid being over-controlling yet know enough to be able to help support our young person. This will help your teen know you are there for them and are understanding ,allowing you to tune in easier next time.

Wonder

Tuning In To Tuesdays - Wonder

This week we want to challenge you to ‘wonder’

We want to encourage you to not only wonder but literally add the word to your vocabulary when talking about emotions with your young person.

The word wonder allows us to explore our young people’s emotions and initiate deeper conversation.

We can say “I wonder if you’re feeling…?”or “I’m wondering if we…?”

By wondering, we show that we have interest in what our young people are doing and feeling. This can help open opportunities to turn towards our young people in the future.

This may feel odd at the start, but we encourage you to try new ways to communicate and see what works best for your family. This is a great way to role model how emotions can be discussed in the home.

Have a great week and keep wondering!

Building in a Pause

Building in a Pause

When young people present in a highly emotional state to parents and caregivers its often difficult to respond with empathy especially when the situation that is causing their heightened state makes us feel triggered as well.

This week we encourage parents to build in a pause before responding to their young people who may be heightened.

When we build in a pause, we might take some deep breaths or make a cup of tea before sharing our thoughts with our young people. This gives us time to down regulate our emotional experience before responding, giving us a better chance of being able to respond with love and empathy.

When our young people share an emotional experience it’s important our own emotions don’t get in the way or over shadow their experience.

Credit: The Gottman institute

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au 

Problem solving with your Teen

At times, teens approach parents with a problem that is causing them stress. The biggest challenge for parents is to stop themselves from jumping in to solve the problem for their teen. Teens learn to become great problem solvers when parents support them to solve the problem themselves.

Parents can support their teen by:

  • Listening to the feelings behind the verbal statements or body language. Notice the emotion, connect, acknowledge, show understanding and perhaps find out more
  • Tell them that you have confidence that they can work out what to do; “You often have great ideas, what do you think would work?”
  • Ask an open question about what they could do; “Can you think of anything that could make things easier or better?”
  • If they can’t think of anything, suggest that maybe together you can come up with some options; “Hmmm, that’s tough. How about we put our heads
  • together and see if we can come up with something? Is now a good time?”
  • Tell your teen that you support their solution.

Also note that as the parent, you may need to negotiate boundaries around some solutions.

If you are interested in hearing more about the Tuning in to Teens Program please email us at tuningintoteens@wyndham.vic.gov.au 

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