Parents often come to my office looking for ways to help their teens get better grades, manage their anxiety, get into college, or make more friends. 100% of the parents who meet with me want the absolute best for their child. However, in the midst of college applications, finals, tryouts and report cards parents often forget to ask their teen, "What are your goals/dreams and how can I help you accomplish them?"
One of the first things I do in therapy is spend four to five weeks just getting to know my teen clients. It is important that I truly understand what it is like to be in their world. After a month of just connecting with the teen we set what I call "Passion Centered Goals." These goals are rooted in the teens hopes and dreams. And the magic of spending tons of time getting to know the teen and then setting goals is that often their "Passion Centered Goals," are almost parallel to the goals their parents have for them.
I ask my teen clients to answer the following questions when setting a "Passion Centered Goal"
- My Passion Centered Goal is ____.
- In the next 30 days I commit to ____ in order to take one step closer to accomplishing my goal.
- This goal aligns with my belief that ____.
- I am integrating my passions into this goal by ____.
- My success will affect the following people in my life ____.
- Achieving my goal positions me to be the best _____ that I can be.
- "Pioneers" who have also accomplished this goal include ____,_____,_____.
- I picture myself ____ when I accomplish this goal.
- Achieving this goal makes it possible for me to ____.
- I plan to celebrate my achievement on ____.
- I will set my plan into motion by ____.
- One way that I am already taking small steps toward achieving this goal.