Conflict is part of life, but gossip, bullying and cliques don’t have to be. Help your teens and pre-teens navigate the drama.
Self-Worth Analyst, Karen Eddington, says we need to re-teach our girls to support one another.
Drama is a word often used by teen girls to describe high emotion situations of conflict. From dealing with gossip to being excluded by a friendship circle, there are some skills that our teens and pre-teens can develop to better handle the drama.
5 Solutions to Navigate Drama
1. Break the stereotypes: Entertainment geared for teen girls is thick with conflict, bullying, gossip, and teens often mimic and model the behavior that they see. We need to teach our girls to break the stereotypes. Conflict is a part of life. But, it is not normal or healthy to handle conflict through verbal abuse, physical abuse, or bullying. We need to re-teach girls to support one another.
2. Recognize insecurity and miscommunication: These two elements are often the cause of drama. Conflict can be more complicated when our self-esteem is low. Miscommunication often includes starting rumors, mind reading, making assumptions, and failure to talk. It can feel scary to directly address another person you think doesn’t like you. Instead of talking things out, we tend to react. If we know what drama is, then we can fix it by building confidence and communicating.
3. Get to know people: When we feel conflict with another person, we often don’t understand that person. We need to work on seeing other people before we force them to see ourselves. If we truly knew and understood another person we would be able to develop compassion, empathy before seeking to get revenge and retribution. Connect before you project.
4. Let go of competition: Many times drama starts because someone feels defensive which leads to an elements of competition between girls. Sometimes we think another person’s success is our failure. We need to recognize that there is enough success for everyone. We need to avoid the comparative “ER” words like “prettier,” “smarter,” or “better.”
5. Build confidence in others: The more we build up and encourage others, the more confident we tend to feel. The more we tear others down the more guarded and insecure we tend to feel. Build other people up. Let another person, especially your rival, be successful and turn you are going to discover that you build yourself up.
Karen Eddington has been researching self-worth issues for over ten years. She has been a nationally recognized high school cheerleading coach, is the founder of a Self-Worth Outreach Center, and is the author of the book for girls Today, I Live. For more information on self-worth tips and techniques go to www.selfworthretreat.com