by Alex Urbina

After 17 years of service delivering one of the most powerful, emotional, and inspirational leadership trainings for teens in the world, I have learned a few things.

I have learned that most teenagers do not ask for help when they really need it; most of them don’t even know that help is needed, and therefore will not reach out.

They suppress their emotions, disconnect from the people they love the most and act like nothing is wrong.

I have learned that most teens have been negatively affected by family experiences, such as separations, divorce, arguments, expectations, judgments, comparison, enabling or something simply innocent like being overlooked, under-appreciated or not being acknowledged enough.

I have learned that all teens have underlying self-esteem issues from the at-risk, to the smartest, most talented, spiritual, and happiest leadership academy kids in the world.

It may not even really be happening the way they see it in the home, kids are the meaning makers to it all, so it is all their own creative imagination that generates their own experiences and their own reality.

I have learned that teenagers will adapt to their surroundings and conditions and will go into a survival mode, not letting you know that at night they cry themselves to sleep from sadness, disappointment, or hopelessness.

They will wake up and put on a smile for you and act as though everything is fine. If you ask them if something is wrong or ask them to share, they will assure you that there is nothing wrong and fake their way through it.

But then one day, they will show up (if they are lucky enough) to one of my trainings or a training like mine and cathartically release years of emotional baggage:  the guilt, resentment, sadness, fear, shame, doubt, and the self-limiting beliefs that taint their emotional and spiritual growth.

I have learned that most parents have absolutely no clue that this is really going on or that there is a way to cause a shift in their teenager’s ability to learn how to move through their emotions faster and healthier rather than bottling it all up inside.

Most teenagers are living life unconsciously, with no sense of self-awareness and or personal power whatsoever.

I have learned that teenagers, when given the opportunity with someone they trust, will open up and discover the underlying issues that really cause them to shut down, check out, disconnect, be lazy, not care, talk back, and all of the other defiant and behavioral issues that parents complain about.

I have learned that, for the teens that do not exhibit the common behavioral issues, have other interpersonal concerns that are hard to notice; because either their parents have never been taught what to look for, or they are focused on other things that have become more important than noticing the warning signs that their teens are starting to exhibit.

I have also learned that teenagers are only a product of their environment. All the low self-esteem, doubt, fear, anger, and resentment had to be created somewhere and in relationships with someone.

It benefits the parent that choose to take 100 percent accountability for the way their children are showing up in the world and the choices that they are making rather than acting as if their children just one day, woke up all of sudden and decided to be less than powerful, loving, confident, passionate, and fulfilled.

Most of all, I am learning that children are really inspired and willing to change when their parents are willing to take responsibility for their parenting and commit themselves to be a more effective Mother and Father.

Alex Urbina is one of the leading experts on Teen, Parent, and Family Relationships. His vast experience in human potential and personal development has made him one of the premier Family Life Coaches in Personal Transformation and an international trainer.

His experiential Life Leadership Trainings are being implemented in various schools, youth organizations and Transformational Centers across the country, helping to empower people to discover their personal power and realize their full potential.

Alex is a resident of the Santa Clarita Valley and has a live weekly radio show called “My Conscious Dad”, on the Hometown Station KHTS AM-1220 every Friday at 1 p.m. This information will help to continuously educate you on teen and family relationships; by being the undisputed self-leader in your own life.