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how to motivate teen

(6 Posts)
despicableshe Wed 26-Mar-14 17:24:28

My friend's son is 18. He lacks self-motivation and it's very difficult to get him interested in trying new things. He seems to be content with his small circle of friends but doesn't initiate any activities with them. If she doesn't drive him to an activity, he just won't go. She's taken him to CAHMS for unrelated reasons in the past but he does not have depression.

He's studying A levels but doesn't particularly push himself,  says he's not interested in uni, much to his mum's chagrin! He also won't look for a job despite lots of encouragement and assistance to fill out application forms. My friend searched for those jobs in the beginning but has stopped as he has shown zero interest whatsoever, she's at her wit's end!

Has anyone got any ideas how we can help him to get some "get up and go?"

LastingLight Wed 26-Mar-14 17:51:00

She has to play hardball with him. Explain that once he finishes school he will be expected to contribute financially to the household and if he doesn't then he can move out. Get him some figures of what graduates earn vs. unskilled jobs. Show him the household budget. Find out how much he would get on the dole, what sort of council accommodation he might get, and let him work out if he would like to live like that.

chocoluvva Thu 27-Mar-14 10:09:53

Is he very lacking in confidence?

despicableshe Fri 28-Mar-14 08:48:38

Yes, we think so...

LastingLight Fri 28-Mar-14 09:04:53

Would counselling be a possibility?

chocoluvva Sun 30-Mar-14 12:59:55

Encouragement. Even to do very small things. Remind him of his successes. Confidence comes from doing. Every little thing he does will give him more confidence.

Ask him about the direction he'd like his life to go in - without telling him he needs to do x,y,z etc - listen to what he says. If he doesn't know, he'll probably welcome someone pointing out his strengths, which would point him in a suitable direction.

It must be very dispiriting to be faced with a huge student debt and a lack of employment. And if you're already not a confident person.... It all seemed so much more straightforward when I were a lass - you either went to free HE or FE, got a job or an apprenticeship. Now even getting a part-time job in McDonald's is difficult....

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