How do you want to show up as a parent in 2018?

I’m just about to sit down with a cup of coffee and a notepad and do some “visioning” around my heart’s desires for 2018.

I know that I want to connect deeper with my kids as they grow another year older, connect with my husband (who, bless his heart, is doing the dishes from last night’s party as we speak!) and connect with my own inner light.

I’ve use a specific process for my “visioning” time for the past few years, and  and it has TRANSFORMED my life. When I invest just a little bit of time into acknowledging all I’ve become as a parent, and centering myself in how I want to show up in the world in the next year, my relationships are deeper, and my life is richer.

I want that for you, too!

That’s why, for the FIRST TIME EVER, I’m opening up this powerful “visioning” process to EVERYONE in my community.

Together, we’ll tap into the wisdom that you’ve gained over the past year, and we’ll align your “Inner Compass” (what you check in with every time you need to make a judgement call- which is ALL THE TIME when you’re raising kids!!).

Here’s the truth: Only YOU know the year you just had with your kids. Last year’s experiences hold incredible wisdom for you if only you pause and reflect.  This is the time to gather all that we know to me true about our kids, ourselves, our world, and align our “inner compass”, our parenting wisdom, to THIS season in our lives.

As parents, we really measure time by how our children are growing and the stages they pass through; their first year of high school, their last year of living at home, the last “family holiday” when everyone is still living under the same roof.

We often get so focused on our kids’ milestones that we forget to PAUSE and reflect on our own parenting milestones. The first time we watch them drive off on a vehicle alone. The first time they break their curfew and we’re waiting up, sick with worry. Each time we reach one of these milestones, it feels like a stretch, and we’re constantly checking in with our inner compass, our best judgement, all that we know about our teen and the world we live in, to make a wise decision about what’s best for our teen. We know that we need to let our teen become more independent, but we always wonder if they can handle it. It’s the gradual letting go that is so critical for our relationship with our teens, and yet no-one is giving us a pat on the back or a gold start for these silent milestones.

Until now.. It’s time to acknowledge our efforts, our heartache, our restraint when we wanted to hold our kids in our arms to keep them safe. Only YOU know the year you’ve had with your teen.

This is your invitation to join me for an incredible event where you’ll turn this year’s  parenting experiences into WISDOM, it’s called your Inner Compass Alignment.

I’m leading a courageous group of parents who are willing to press PAUSE on the busyness so that you can reflect on the year you’ve had, and set a powerful intention for how you want to parent in 2018.

This is your opportunity to re-calculate, to re-adjust, to re-align with who you are, and how you relate to your teen THIS year.

Join me for this Inner Compass Alignment, and start 2018 strong! Here’s what you’ll discover during the event:

  • Acknowledge all you’ve been and become as a parent this year
  • Access the wisdom you’ve gained from 2017 so you don’t have to re-learn any of those lessons
  • Chart your course for connecting with your teen in a new way!

You’ll walk away from this experience feeling centered, clear, wise, and inspired to connect with your teen!

CLICK HERE to access the full invitation!

I can’t wait to see what 2018 holds for you and your family!

Deanne

P.S. Please share this invitation with your parent friends, or your partner. Together we’re building a community of courageous parents who are leaning into growing with their kids through the messiness of the teen years!

 

EASY strategies for RESILIENCE that no-one is talking about!

So many parents I’ve talked to are wondering what the BEST approach is to supporting their teens to be able to handle what life throws at them (and, honestly, how to handle the demands of living with the emotional ups and downs of a teen).

There are a number of EASY strategies that NO-ONE is talking about that are PROVEN to develop resilience in teens! (but I’m about the let these incredible SECRETS out!)

I’m wondering,

Is raising a RESILIENT teen one of your goals as a parent?

Is helping your teen to discover their PURPOSE important to you?

Are you always on the lookout for strategies that WORK with teens?

If you said YES to any of these questions, then please keep reading!

Parents today are more stressed, overwhelmed, overworked than ever before (and so are our teens!). Trial and error in parenting can be exhausting! We need EVERY SHORTCUT that we can get!

That’s why I’m so excited to share with you The Top 5 Secrets to Raising Resilient and Purpose-driven Teens

In this 3 part video series, you’ll learn

  • How to help your teen overcome the inevitable difficulties in life
  • The missing ingredient in most goal-setting programs
  • How to help your teen connect with a sense of purpose using the “video game method”
  • How to lower the risk of your teen making BIG mistakes
  • How to stay connected with your teen TODAY so that you’ll be friends when they are an adult

CLICK HERE to grab your seat, and you’ll have INSTANT ACCESS to the first video!

Enjoy!

Deanne

P.S. The KEY to resilience, is in dipping into the resources that are available, and learning what WORKS! Don’t miss out on this opportunity to learn these under-used strategies for raising resilient and purpose-driven teens! CLICK HERE to grab instant access to this video series!

RETREAT into gratitude!

Are you feeling overworked and under-appreciated?

Have you been putting your own needs on the back-burner so that you can take care of EVERYONE ELSE?

Here’s what I know for sure:

There are seasons in our life when we need to take care of others, but when that becomes our default setting, that leads to exhaustion, resentment, and sickness!

Sometimes, we need to take a step back from our default setting, and re-calculate how we’re operating day-to-day.

If you’re willing to open up to GRATITUDE, it’s easy!

That’s why I’m so excited to invite you to join me for a GRATITUDE RETREAT.

Step back from your life for a weekend, and allow me to guide you into GRATITUDE

(It’s my superpower, and it can be your superpower, too!)

With gratitude, you shift out of stress and into your heart. Through gratitude you gain:

  • CLARITY around who you are, and who you’re not
  • CONFIDENCE in your ability to take care of yourself through the stressful times
  • CONNECTION with your own inner spark, AND the people you love

CLICK HERE for the full invitation

With gratitude,

Deanne

P.S. If there’s someone in your life who seems to have lost their spark, please copy and paste this link, and invite them to retreat into gratitude!

Time management tool for DISTRACTED teens!

Teens are more easily distracted than ever!

Once they reach high school, they’re expected to be able to study at home, on their own.

As a teacher, I know that by this time in September many high school students are struggling to keep up with their studies. Teens struggle with time management!

It is SO frustrating (for teachers and parents) to watch teens slap together last-minute work, procrastinate, or stay up late sacrificing their sleep in order to complete their work. These tactics do not lead to academic success or mental health!

The truth is that many teens have poor time management skills because:

  1. There are many tasks that they’ve never done before, so they can’t estimate the time it will take
  2. They are highly distractible (even college-aged students!)
  3. They need someone to SHOW them how to manage their time

Time management is SO CRITICAL for teens to learn so that they can create healthy habits for life, and achieve the success that they desire. Teens need to learn how to schedule in their work, so that they also have some time for PLAY (which seems like slacking off, but which actually nurtures their creativity so their school work and their problem solving abilities improve).

We all wish that teens wouldn’t be SO distractible, but the reality is that THEY ARE!

Living a mindful life is all about noticing, without judging. Instead of judging ourselves (or our teens) for being highly distractible, we need to acknowledge this distractibility and work with it!

Research Psychologist and Professor Emeritus at California State University, Dominguez Hills,  Dr. Larry Rosen taught me that teens need to work WITH their distractibility. I was so inspired by my conversation with Dr. Rosen, and his research on how teens study, that I created this planner for teens to use.  It’s a time management tool I call

The Ultimate Reading Estimate Tool for Teens

Knowing how long it’s going to take to get through a few chapters of a bio textbook, or a novel for English class is key to balancing school work with a social life, or any kind of life! Take the guesswork out of reading with The Ultimate Reading Estimate Tool for Teens.

CLICK HERE to grab a copy for your teen!

Here’s to your teen’s academic success!

Deanne

P.S. I’ve never met a teen who didn’t want to be successful. They just don’t always know how to be successful, and they don’t always BELIEVE that the smallest steps in the right direction can and will add up to success down the road. This tool can help teens to learn that small steps do result in BIG success!

The Resilient Teen Blueprint Program

It’s not easy being a parent. Yesterday my husband came into the room and immediately sensed the conflict between my daughter and I, and he used his sense of humour to diffuse us both….twice in one day.

I have worked with thousands of teens over the years, and there have been many challenges along the way, but NOTHING has been more challenging than raising my own children. As parents, we are constantly balancing our need to protect and direct our children with their need for automony.

I’m sharing this with you because I don’t want you to think that I am a perfect parent.

I’m not.

But I DO have the gift of being able to see where parents are blocked in the way they’re thinking about their teens.

It often takes someone from the outside looking in at our life to help us see what’s really going on. I don’t know YOUR teen, but I KNOW TEENS!

Teens want to feel significant, connected, and independent BUT they don’t always choose the healthiest ways of meeting those needs. As parents, we often can’t see the forest for the trees. We focus in on our teen’s unhealthy and sometimes downright dangerous decisions and we are completely frustrated that our parenting has little effect on our children’s behaviour.

What we often miss is how to help our teens to MEET THEIR NEEDS in healthy ways.

How can we help our teens feel connected, significant, and independent?

Are you interested in learning how to DO PARENTING DIFFERENTLY so that you can teach your teen how to MEET THEIR NEEDS in a healthy, safe, and fun way?

This is EXACTLY what I teach my students in my group coaching program, The Resilient Teen Blueprint.

 

This is a 12 month group coaching program designed to support you to EMPOWER your teen to be resilient and confident. Through the course of this program you’ll learn how to:

  • Understand your teen’s behaviour as a signal of the deep needs they’re trying to meet
  • Problem solve WITH your teen so they can choose healthy ways to meet their needs
  • Listen with respect and compassion instead of reacting to your teen
  • Stay grounded and present in the moment
  • Practice deep self care so you have the capacity to parent with intention
  • Clarify your goals and vision as a parent

In learning these teachings, parents and teens transform. Parents become more connected to their children, and teens are empowered to co-create their life with trusted adults. This paves the way for a beautiful life-long relationship as your young adult becomes an adult.

If this is inspiring to you and you would like to learn more about the methods taught in the Resilient Teen Blueprint Program,

Book a call HERE

I can’t wait to talk to you!

Deanne

Parenting for Resilience

The school year is wrapping up, and I’m curious….have you really had the impact on your teen that you’d like?

Are you worried about the choices that your teen is making, but feeling powerless to influence your teen?

Are you seeing your teen make the SAME MISTAKE over and over again?

Are you afraid that you’ll “say too much” and push your teen into hiding…again?

SO many parents have been asking me HOW TO PARENT TEENS so that they’re RESILIENT, so I’ve created this FREE MASTER CLASS, and you’re invited!

Parenting for Resilience: How to coach your teen into being a successful problem solver is happening LIVE on Saturday!

In this MASTERCLASS I’ll show you step-by-step how to:

  • Reduce stress by swapping worry for wisdom
  • Listen to your teen so they KNOW that you respect them
  • Ask simple questions that will empower your teen to solve their own problems
  • Build resilience skills over the summer as a family

Are you in? CLICK HERE to grab your spot for FREE!

Not only will you hear my BEST STRATEGIES for empowering your teen, you’ll also have a chance to ask me questions in our LIVE Q and A session at the end of the training.

Don’t miss out on this amazing FREE training! CLICK HERE to grab your spot!

See you there!

Deanne

P.S. We can only accommodate 100 participants, so act now to grab your seat! CLICK HERE to register now!

Resilient Teen

Let’s face it, teens are amazing explorers and life adventurers, and sometimes that gets them into trouble. The teenage brain thrives on new experiences to grow, and so teens are hardwired to experiment. But some experiments come with high risk, and current brain science is telling us that  teens are not great at assessing risk and anticipating the consequences of their actions.

As adults, we want to both encourage our teen’s adventurous spirit AND protect them from making damaging mistakes. Perhaps more importantly, when our teens inevitably find themselves in a difficult situation, we want them to learn how to work through it, so that they can build their own problem solving skills.

After all, didn’t YOU make some pretty big mistakes as a teen?

We all did.

The difference between our teenage mistakes and the mistakes of this generation, is the added impact of our children’s mistakes being broadcast far and wide on social media, with devastating consequences for both teens and their families. Our digital connections can be an amazing opportunity, and also a heavy burden. Teens also see the glossy, filtered, photo-shopped, perfect snapshot version of other’s lives on social media, and they are comparing how their life FEELS with how everyone else’s life LOOKS.

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you’ll know that I’ve spent 14 years as a High School teacher, and working with teens every day taught me that my students were under incredible stress and pressure to do, and be, and have it all. Under this intense pressure there was no room for failure, so some students took themselves out of the game completely by skipping school. Others attended school but had an attitude of “I don’t care”, “this is stupid”, or “It doesn’t matter”, or suffered silently with their own devastating inner thoughts and tried to be invisible.

Teens are reporting higher rates of anxiety each year, which is not surprising when we hear how teens feel overwhelmed by the amount of information at their disposal, compare themselves to countless others on social media, and feel like everything has already been said and done. All of these pressures ON TOP OF the usual ups and downs of being a teenager requires all of us to think differently about how we support teens today.

I’ve been wondering,

How can we support critical thinkers instead of direction followers?

How can we provide support to teens, while still allowing them to figure things out on their own?

How can we support RESILIENCE in youth?

To answer these questions, I’ve joined with over 21 thought leaders to bring you an online conference dedicated to supporting RESILIENT teens. The interviews are REAL, short, and to the point CONVERSATIONS with teens, parents, entrepreneurs, coaches, and mentors, who share their own story of resilience, and what they’re doing now to make things a little but easier for others to move through their own hardships. CLICK HERE to grab access!

It’s called Resilient Teen: Supporting independence, confidence, and resourcefulness in teens.

It is FREE for you to attend. You can grab access using THIS LINK

This event is FOR TEENS who want to know how to overcome the tough times, and FOR PARENTS who want to understand how to set teens up for success in school AND life.

You can watch each 30 minute video from your laptop or mobile device, so you will have STRATEGIES and INSPIRATION at your fingertips.

Here is what we’re talking about in the video interviews:

  • Developing a positive MINDSET to learn from past mistakes
  • How to walk through TEEN DEPRESSION with renewed purpose
  • How CONNECTING with their school community helps youth develop resilience
  • How teens can THRIVE even when they don’t complete high school
  • The KEY SKILLS of resilience and how to teach them to your teen
  • How PARENTS can be a supportive resource to their teens

CLICK HERE NOW to gain complimentary access to the experts starting on MAY 1, 2017

I’m excited to share these videos with you!

Deanne

P.S. Psychologists are telling us that one key to resilience for teens AND adults is being CONNECTED to a community who can support you through your difficult times.

You are invited to join us in  The Gratitude Lounge Facebook group. During the month of May, the lounge will be buzzing with conversation about the Resilient Teen interviews. Whether you’re a teen, parent, grandparent, teacher, if you’re interested in supporting teens, or learning about resilience, CLICK HERE TO JOIN us on Facebook.

 

 

Suicide Prevention

A teen in my neighbourhood took her own life over a week ago. My heart goes out to her family, friends, and her school community who is grieving her loss and wondering what they could have done to prevent her death.

Just today I met a woman who recently lost her son, who took his own life. I can only imagine how difficult it must be to go through each day knowing that your child is gone. And wondering what you could have done, if you had only known what was REALLY going on in your child’s mind. This is every parent’s worst nightmare.

In Canada, suicide is the second highest cause of death for youth aged 10-24.

Suicide prevention isn’t a term that I use often because it evokes our fear of losing those closest to us, however, for some parents and teens that fear is very real.

Suicide prevention strategies might seem like something that only a few people, in very extreme situations, or teens labelled as “high risk” might need.

Today, I’m inviting you to think differently about suicide prevention by thinking about your own Mental Health.

Mental Health is important for EVERYONE because we all face difficult periods in our life. The loss of a family member, losing a job, divorce, having to move, all of these stressers have an impact on our mental health. The pressure on adolescents to be successful at school and be successful socially is intense, and teens don’t always have the understanding that their difficult times are only temporary.

I know that many teens roll their eyes when we talk about mental health in schools, because they feel like it doesn’t affect them. Or their deep shame about  their own internal dialogue prevents them from reaching out for support.

This is why we NEED to embed mental health education in the high school curriculum.

As an English Language Arts specialist, I know that literature allows us an amazing opportunity to explore the thoughts and behaviours of fictional characters to open an continue on a conversation about mental health that can last weeks and months, instead of minutes or an hour.

Understanding mental health through fictional characters also helps us understand that mental health is not an individual issue, but that there are environmental, social, and physiological factors that can impact our mental health.

Mindfulness practice is also a way for students AND teachers to learn the strategies necessary for checking in on their own thoughts, and learning to shift their thoughts in a way that supports their mental health. Whether you’re a teen, or an adult, EVERYONE needs to check in with the thoughts they’re having on a consistent basis. Mindfulness practice gives you that time and space to check in with your thoughts.

The Canadian Mental Health Association describes 5 characteristics of Mental Health, which are

  1. Ability to enjoy life
  2. Resilience
  3. Balance
  4. Self-Actualization
  5. Flexibility

CLICK HERE to take the Canadian Mental Health Association’s Health Meter to really check in with your own mental health. Only YOU really know your heart and mind.

You deserve a life that FEELS GOOD!

Yours in mental health,

Deanne

P.S. The first step is admitting your mental health status to yourself. The next step is reaching out for support. For immediate, 24 hour support call kids help line.

The real reason why I started Gratitudeworks

I’ve spent 14 years working with teens EVERY DAY as a high school English Literature ( or as we say here in Calgary, English Language Arts) teacher.

In my local school district, students have been reporting increasing levels of anxiety and depression each year. In my last semester of full time classroom teaching, two of my students were hospitalised for their mental health. It was then that I realised that my purpose was no longer to be a classroom teacher, but to teach teens, parents and teachers how to incorporate strategies into their lives that would support their mental health.

We’re all so busy, worried, frustrated, and overwhelmed and

IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY!

I’m on a mission to transform the lives of teens and parents LIKE YOU through

SIMPLE

DOABLE

SUSTAINABLE practices to improve the quality of YOUR LIFE.

Mindfulness is one of those practices.

I know that going to a concrete building swarming with teens can wear you down! Mindfulness practices, whether that is quietly drinking a cup of tea, or sitting for meditation for 5 minutes, or 20 minutes,  are what have sustained me in the busyness of school for years. Research has shown that mindfulness practice is effective in improving sleep, lowering stress, and improving self-compassion. No only do our thought about ourselves improve, but our perspective about life shifts to be more positive with mindfulness.

In October 2016, I interviewed Dr. Dzung Vo, a pediatrician specializing in adolescent medicine at British Columbia Children’s Hospital, and clinical assistant professor at the University of British Columbia Faculty of Medicine, Vancouver, Canada. Dr Vo  has created a mindfulness based stress reduction program for TEENS as a response to the stress and depression that he is seeing in his teenage patients in Vancouver, Canada.

If you’ve got 3 minutes, I invite you to CLICK HERE and watch the video on Dr Vo’s mindfulness for teens website, the video is called “Youth Voices” where you’ll hear from REAL TEENS about how mindfulness has transformed their lives.

On his website, Dr. Vo also shares REE DOWNLOADABLE GUIDED MEDITATIONS

If you don’t have time to try some of these meditations right now, just pull out your calendar and schedule in 15 minutes later today to check them out.

You deserve a life that FEELS GOOD!

Be well,

Deanne