Teenagers are busier than ever. Between school, homework, socialising, extracurricular activities, technology, and jobs, teens are being pulled in many different directions. When it comes to something important, such as schoolwork, it’s imperative that teens use their time wisely and stay focused.
With so many distractions, how does a teen get the stuff done that needs to get done? Minimising distractions, or time wasters, is the only way to stay on task. Let’s take a look at a few of the top time wasters for teens and how they can minimise them.
One of the biggest time wasters for teens is procrastination. They tend to put things off until the last minute. You most likely have found your teen doing homework at the breakfast table or in the car on the way to school. They have put off doing their homework the night before, or the week before, and now they are squeezing it all in during the last moments before it’s due.
To help minimise this time waster, the parent must consistently remove distractions from their teen. This means reminding your teen that they don’t get to do anything until their homework is done. Set a time for your teen to do homework. Turn off the television, the computer, the phone, or whatever it is that is distracting your teen enough to create the procrastination. Sometimes, a few gentle reminders about this is enough motivation to get them moving.
We live in a world full of gadgets, electronics, all the goodies we love. It’s quite normal to see teens on their iPhones, iPods, iPads, iEverything all day, every day. It’s no wonder their time is so easily eaten up and ‘wasted’ with these distractions at their fingertips 24/7.
To help combat this time waster, you’re going to need to set some boundaries for your teen. Perhaps you’ll want to assign a certain time-frame for when your teen can use their gadgets. If your teen knows that at a certain time every day they can click on, tune in, surf, text, and get connected, they will power through their work, not wanting to waste a moment, so they can get to their ‘gadget time.’ Bribery you say? Yes. And it works.
If adults have a hard time getting things done in an unorganised space, think how much more difficult it must be for teens. Having an unorganised space can cause a teen’s mind to wander even more than usual. And, as we know, distractions keep teens from focusing on the task at hand.
It’s pretty simple to cure this time waster. Make sure your teen’s work area is as clutter-free and organised as possible. Use things like bins, folders, shelves, and even color-coding to help your teen see their busy schedule laid out in an organised fashion. Don’t take on this responsibility all by yourself. Teens are perfectly capable of keeping their area clean and organised once you help them set it up.
Teaching your teen how to deal with time wasters and distractions isn’t an easy task, but it can be done. Battling time wasters is a good skill to learn as a teen, as it will be a valuable benefit for an entire lifetime.
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