Your sensitive, thoughtful and inquisitive child has grown into a teenager and your heart breaks to witness them struggling with anxiety, sleep issues, self-doubt or moodiness. You want to see your teenager thrive, but you feel stuck and helpless.
The pressures of being a teenager are difficult, but especially for Highly Sensitive and/or Introverted kids who are easily overwhelmed, feel deeply, need more alone time and put pressure on themselves to be perfect. They often struggle with…
As a teenager there’s a lot of pressure to fit in and find your social group. Sensitive and Introverted teens have different social needs than the majority of their peers and may feel socially isolated or low self-esteem as a result. Encourage your teen to focus more on quality over quantity to meet their needs for connection:
build a few close friendships
prioritize one-on-one interactions
limit overstimulating group events
If your teen tends to be very perceptive, a deep thinker and/or very empathetic, they are picking up on subtleties in their environment which leads to overstimulation. When we’re overstimulated, we feel anxious and our minds race. Help your teen carve out time for quiet downtime every night before bed to unwind.
You may notice that your teen feels all their emotions deeply from intense sadness to pure joy. They are easily excited or brought to tears over little things and can immerse themselves for hours in their favorite activities. Help your teen find balance by encouraging them to journal or write about their feelings on a regular basis.
If your teen tends to notice the little details around them, the school environment (or the busy dining room table) can be very overstimulating. When overstimulated, it’s very difficult to concentrate. Giving your teen a quiet space to study and do homework without being rushed can help increase focus.
Teens that are more introspective have brains that are wired to pause and reflect, to think about upcoming activities in advance. This means that sudden changes in routine, surprises and transitions, even if positive, may be stressful. Create a weekly routine with consistent and predictable times for meals, homework, bedtime and activities, including one unstructured day for downtime.
By providing your teen a safe space to be themselves, we can process the emotions that have been building up and explore the experience of feeling different.
To help your teen express themselves on their own terms and learn to regulate those big emotions and active mind, I combine the use of mindfulness tools, self-compassion practices, art, music and journaling in my sessions.
Your teen will learn tools to calm anxiety and overwhelm, advocate for their needs, feel more confident and more.
If your teen could benefit from additional support, I offer individual therapy and group support for teens in my San Francisco office or online via secure video sessions. Fill out the contact form below to schedule a free phone consultation or get more information. I look forward to connecting with you soon.