• What Leadership in Teens Looks Like and How It Impacts Them | Renee Sinning | 169

  • What leadership in teens looks like & how it impacts themWe generally think of leadership in teens as being president of a student organization or captain of a team. But leadership goes far beyond those boundaries. It can show up in myriad ways in everyday life for our kids. And why do we care about it? Yes, every college is asking about leadership and it’s on every scholarship application, but other than checking off those boxes, why should we care? Renee Sinning is going to show us. She has a candid conversation with Mighty Parenting podcast host Sandy Fowler discussing the truth about leadership in teens. She shows us how every teenager can recognize and embrace who they are at their core and feel confident in their own skin.



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    A Favorite Quote from the Show: 

    Kids don’t show up as leaders for themselves when parents are nagging, reminding and telling them what to do. They need the opportunity to be responsible for themselves and take responsibility for their choices.

    High Points From Our Conversation on What Leadership in Teens Looks Like:

    Quote about leadership in teensLeadership is the ability to motivate ourselves and others into action.

    Everyone is a leader by choice or by default.

    Leadership in teens includes skills such as accountability, responsibility, communication, and being proactive.

    Kids don’t think about leadership or understand it. Parents don’t share it.

    We all have different roles we play and we can be leaders there but we’re always a leader for ourselves. We get to choose how we show up in the world and that’s self leadership.

    Teens don’t always see themselves as leaders because people are always telling them what to do. They lose sight of the fact they have choices.

    Kids don’t show up as leaders for themselves when parents are nagging, reminding and telling them what to do. They need the opportunity to be responsible for themselves and take responsibility for their choices.

    If your child doesn’t care at all no matter what you do, check in. They may be struggling with executive function skills. You can also get curious and figure out why they don’t care or why they’re struggling. There’s a reason they don’t care. It’s a puzzle parents need to figure out.

    Teenagers can’t regulate emotions, plan, organize, or prioritize when executive function skills aren’t fully developed.

    If they’ve struggled for something for a long time they can just shut down. They develop a story around it to protect themselves.

    Talk to them. Tell them you see their struggle and want to help them.

    Teens want to be seen, they want to feel heard and valued. They can shut down when this is happening.

    If you are going to do just one thing to help your child then find 1 good thing they do each day and tell them. Point out what they’re doing and what you think about it or why you appreciate that.

    Talk about leadership in teens and tell them they are a leader. Give examples of when and how you’ve seen them lead.

    Give them responsibility and hold them accountable. Hold them accountable and give them consequences. Tell them why you’re holding them accountable. 

    Teach them how to communicate and how to be proactive.

    Explain why you’re doing this. Tell them they aren’t going to live with you forever. They’re going to be out on their own and these are important skills.

    Model it and tell them why. Pair communication of the request with an explanation. “I’d like you to do this because ___________”.

    Our kids can see leadership as only being the president of an organization or the captain of a team. We need to talk to them about leadership in teens being more—supporting others and being there for them. You can help the teacher or the kid who’s being picked on in the hall.  Leadership is saying hi to the kid no-one pays attention to. It’s simply how you show up in the world for yourself and others.

    Leadership can be quiet. It isn’t always a role people see. It’s how you show up in the world for yourself and others. Leadership means listening and encouraging.

    It’s hard for teens and young adults to see the good in themselves.

    Talk to them about their good qualities. Ask them where they see themselves as a leader and be prepared to tell them where you see them leading.


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    Our Guest Renee Sinning:

    Renee Sinning talks about leadership in teensRenee is a certified professional coach specializing in life, leadership and success coaching for teenagers (and their parents).  As a retired high school educator of 18 years, Renee has spent her entire career teaching, guiding, and mentoring teenagers to maximize their potential. She is a mom of 3 young adults, and the author of The Little Black Book of Leadership: An A-Z Guide to Leadership in Life and Business. Renee’s passion for helping teens stems from her years in the classroom, having seen too many teenagers fall through the cracks.  Her goal is for every teenager to recognize and embrace who they are at their core, and, to feel confident in their own skin.  She helps them tap into their own personal leadership qualities, so that they can become confident, motivated, and engaged in all areas of their life, equipped with strategies to overcome life’s obstacles.

    To learn more or connect with our guest visit www.ReneeSinning.com 

    Our Sponsor:

    Sandy Fowler—The Art and Science of Saying No: Ditch Guilt, Find Time, and Enjoy Your Life More