10 ways to spend more time with your teenager.
Does it feel like you never see your teenager these days? School, social life, Netflix, gaming, clubs, social media – there’s a whole lot of life occupying your teen’s mind and time, and it can be difficult to share a minute of it. If you’re looking for ways to reconnect with your teenager and yearn to spend more time together, read on…
1. Dinner Date
Plan a special dinner date with your teenager and make it a regular thing. Ask them to choose their favourite meal and suggest you prepare and cook it together. This gives you lots of time to chat and teaches them valuable life skills at the same time. Don’t worry if you don’t always have time to cook something from scratch – it won’t hurt to throw something in the microwave or order in takeaway every now and again. You can still sit down to eat together and catch-up while you munch.
2. Try Something They Love
Step into your teen’s life and try something they enjoy doing. Got a gaming expert on your hands? Ask your teen to show you how to play their favourite game and give it a go! Does your daughter love to dance? Try to learn one of their favourite dance routines or do TikTok dances together.
3. Walk & Talk
Ask your teen to join you for a walk. Getting outdoors and moving in the fresh air can breathe new energy into your teen and encourage them to open up and talk. Challenge them to a race or kick a ball about the park to make your walk more interesting. Your conversation is likely to be more natural and less forced when you interact in this active way.
4. Movie Mates
Ask your teen if you can watch a movie together – their choice. You can learn a lot about your teenager from their favourite film, plus you’ll have lots of talking points to discuss. This is a great way to get to know your teen and to find out more about their likes and dislikes, which can help bring you closer together.
5. Share A Skill
Do you have a top talent? If you’re brilliant at knitting or a master baker, why not offer to teach your teen? Or why not learn something new together? Find something they’re genuinely interested in learning, rather than trying to force it – there’s got to be something that sparks their interest!
6. Games Night
Dig out your old board games and hold a family games night. Let your teen choose a game to play if they’re not exactly eager to get involved. If the night is a success, try to make it a regular family activity. You can change up the games or try a family quiz night instead to keep everyone interested and invested.
7. Memory Lane
Looking back through family photo albums is a lovely way to connect with your teenager. Photos can spark all kinds of memories and feelings and can be a timely reminder of the importance of family and friends. It’s also a chance to reflect on sadder times and to talk about those who are no longer with us.
8. Screen-free Time
Introduce a screen-free break, at least once a week, even if it’s just for an hour or two. Ask everyone in the family to switch off their screens and use the time to do something together. You can use this valuable time to bake, cook, read, walk the dog, dance, do an exercise routine or play a board game.
9. Take 20
Dedicate 20 minutes of every day to your teen. Use this time to give them 100% of your attention. You can ask if there’s anything they want to talk about, how their day went, what they’ve got planned for the weekend or whatever you like.
10. Top Team
Do something hands-on together, like building flat-pack furniture or painting a room. A mini project can bring you closer together and make your teenager feel like 50% of an awesome team! Find something you both enjoy and take an interest in – your project could be upcycling a piece of furniture, tinkering with an old car, or transforming an overgrown part of the garden.
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