THE MYTH OF THE LAZY TEEN
- Created: Wednesday, 21 May 2014 14:47
Kate Beddow is the founder of Growing Spirits, promoting natural healing, relaxation and creativity to help keep children happy, healthy and balanced. She has written a range of ebooks and meditations and writes regularly for a range of magazines and online publications. In this week’s blog Kate talks about looking at teenagers from a different perspective.
TEENAGERS HAVE A REPUTATION FOR BEING LAZY, SELFISH AND ANTI-SOCIAL, AMONG OTHER THINGS! KATE BEDDOW, CREATOR OF GROWING SPIRITS, UNCOVERS THE TRUTH ABOUT THE "LAZY TEEN" STEREOTYPE AND THE REALITY BEHIND THEIR LIFESTYLE.
I have been doing a lot of research recently about the teenage years, both as part of my studies in creating my Tranquil Teens class but also because my daughter is 10 years old this year and I can already feel that life and my relationship with her is changing.
The more I read the more angry I became. I know what you're thinking;
"it is because teenagers are rude, selfish, uncooperative, uncommunicative and lazy isn't it?".
Well no. Just the opposite actually. I grew angry because of the unfair treatment of our teens. When I read the list of physical changes their bodies go through it made my head spin. We all went through it, obviously, but we didn't necessarily notice because we were much too busy worrying about who fancied us, who was making our life miserable by spreading rumours about us or making bitchy comments, whether we had the right trainers to go out in and how we were going to pass the next exam!
Our teens cope with school pressure, peer pressure, out of school and sports clubs, socialising and trying to figure out who they are and who they want to be, and all while growing up to 8cm a year (yes, a year!), growing breasts/larger genitals, growing hair, growing muscles and getting used to their changing voice. During their teens this means that you could have grown anything up to 40cm!
Big deal! Right? Well no, this growth is the key to the reputation our poor teens have become saddled with. In order for them to grow and develop at this phenomenal rate their body is pumped full of hormones, particularly growth hormone. I have a unique relationship with this hormone thanks to my acromegaly (click here to read about my condition) and it makes you crave foods that you believe are high energy (biscuits, chocolate, ice cream, crisps), it affects your temper and critically it wipes out your energy to force you to rest so that your body can grow.
When a baby is going through rapid growth they nap all the time and that is accepted. When a pregnant woman is going through the most rapid changes (the first trimester and third trimester) she rests more, she may sleep during the day, and she is constantly told to "put her feet up". But for some reason our poor teens go through all these changes, while coping with rapid emotional development and massive pressure to learn and grow academically and make life changing decisions, and what are they told? "Get up!" "Stop being so lazy" "Are you just going to sit there all day?" ...
I think it is time we stopped and took a good look at how we label our teens, remember words have energy and if we call the lazy they will become lazy. If we allow them to cocoon and grow in their own time and we nurture their growth, they will learn to listen to their bodies and to cherish this crucial time in their development.
Oh and don't even get me started on the education system and the pressures that is putting on our children, that's a topic for another day!