Thriving on the Inside
"It takes a village to raise a child."
- African Proverb
Your Teenager is on a Journey Towards Freedom
Envision your academically thriving Black teenager:
Feeling at home in their body, both connected and present with themselves, other people & the world.
Feeling a greater sense of confidence, self-worth & inner calm.
Being able to tolerate & respond to imperfection and mistakes with more gentleness & self-compassion.
Being more thoughtful about their choices, and the impact of their choices—on themselves and others.
Having the skills, guidance and support to make decisions that support a healthy life.
Feeling a connection to something greater than themselves, being able to lean into Divine support and access their own Inner wisdom, in a way that feels right for them.
Being able to recognize the ways that society & past experiences have conditioned their minds, so that they can replace harmful beliefs with new ones.
This is what it looks like to thrive on the inside, yes, even in the midst of an oppressive & stressful society. This and so much more is possible for us and our academically thriving Black teenagers. Thriving on the inside is a continual process and lifelong journey that takes practice. No one arrives over night or on their own. Ready to journey together?
DOES THIS SOUND LIKE YOUR ACADEMICALLY THRIVING BLACK TEENAGER RIGHT NOW?
Do they attend a predominately white school and/or one of few Black students in their AP & honors courses?
Have they been told they have to work twice (or 10x) as hard compared to their non-Black peers? Do they ever feel they have to prove they belong & are smart enough?
Have they been made fun of by others, specifically being called, "weird," or an "Oreo" or told, "you talk white?" Do they ever say they feel they're not Black enough.
Do they get stressed out and overwhelmed very easily? Becoming irritated or breakdown when things don't go their way or change suddenly?
Do they feel pressure to be perfect in everything they do? School, sports, music, leadership positions? Afraid of making a mistake or letting people down?
Are they constantly overthinking & worried about their future? Often having difficulty with staying in the present moment?
Do they isolate themselves form everyone to get their work done? Often skipping sleep, meals, or time with friends to finish their school assignments and projects?
Do they complain about having so much to do, but not enough time to get it all done? Ultimately afraid of falling behind in class and school work?
Are they comparing themselves to their non-Black peers or asking questions like "who am I?" What do I want?" or "where do I belong?"
Are they ever described as being "too sensitive?" As a result of this, do they often feel alone, or like others do not understand what they're really going through?
Have they tried journaling, praying & talking to friends & family but the feelings of stress & overwhelm & anxiety never seem to lessen?
Ultimately, are they really hard on themselves? Often putting more pressure on themselves than you do?
If you answered YES to any of these question, you're not alone and your teenager may benefit from working with me! Click here to explore more!
A FRIENDLY REMINDER BEFORE YOU GO:
I know you're doing your best to raise your teen to be confident, prepared, and a productive person in the world. You are busy taking them from one activity to the next. You see so much greatness in them and you desire that they stay on a healthy path. You already know from your own experiences that being a human is hard at times. You've never been a teenager at this time in history, but you know it's a lot different than when you were growing up.
Academically thriving Black teens are navigating oppressive, racist, & stressful educational & societal structures, and as a result, they often need support with learning new and healthier ways to relate to themselves and the world around them. In addition, developing friendships during the teen years (especially after the global covid-19 pandemic), can feel challenging for many.
Your teenager deserves to be be seen for more than just their achievements and outward successes (musical talents, athleticism, leadership abilities). They are whole human beings-who has their own feelings, thoughts, struggles, and needs. Often times they feel the pressure to prove themselves as smart and successful, especially when navigating a society & school system that is often committed to seeing them as less than which can make them feel like they never measure up.
The radical act of seeing our children and teenagers as human beings FIRST will take deep unlearning, reflecting, pausing, and slowing down, but it's worth it, and they deserve it. Their ability to thrive on the inside is deeply connected to the types of relationships they have with the various adults around them. I'm ready to be another supportive adult in their life. Let's go!