Young Adult Hygiene – Getting Kids to Brush!

Young Adult Hygiene:

Once parents begin to see real changes in their teens, they take me aside and in a hushed voice they ask: “Do you think you could get him/her… to brush?” Young adult hygiene: the band of many parent’s existence.

Brushing and showering are often the most daunting things to get young people to buy into on a regular basis these days. (Less so, once they start having a regular dating partner)
I have found a simple way to get young adults to bring showering and tooth brushing into their daily routines.
I will share it with you but first you must let go of three things:

Three things you must relinquish:

1) Stop thinking that they are disgusting aliens for not doing what you think is common sense.. It is not common sense to them. It is, in fact, equally alien to do it.
2) Let go of any guilt you may have about this “issue”. It really isn’t about you. It really is about them.
3) Free yourself from judging, checking, testing etc. If it hasn’t worked by now, it will not only not work, it will make them equate doing these things with “giving in”.

The Magic Young Adult Hygiene Formula:

Errr. There is no magic formula. Sorry 🙁
But wait! There is good news! I really do get all my clients to brush and bathe but it is a slow process.

The basics of WWYM Life Coaching is using some self-chosen tasks and a daily scheduler to help young people get things done that are external i.e. not what they feel like doing at the moment but things they had determined in advance that they would like to be able to do.
Once we have this system working (it takes about 12 weeks) we can add personal hygiene items and these issues slowly resolve themselves with very little effort.
The trick is having them decide that it makes sense in a rational time (our sessions) and then go about deciding what a good starting point might be.

For those who never brush, it might be brushing five times a week. Now, I’m sure a lot of people reading this would say that this isn’t good hygiene and won’t prevent their teeth from rotting.
But once you can instill a habit in somebody, it is not that more difficult to get them to brush six days out of seven. Then to brush twice a day and eventually, it becomes a habit that is automatic.

What we consider “obvious” is not to them.

It therefore requires the patient steady training and the explanation of the advantage of daily habits. It works and it works without having to nag!

So what about showering? Follow the same formula. If they rarely do it, find a few days a week that might be good practice targets for showering. It has to fit into a routine and you have to make sure that it makes sense to mix into their habits.

Do you have a story about young adult hygiene? Let us know and we’ll share it!

Update: 5 years later… how goes the young adult hygiene challenge?
The Daily Scheduler really works! We have now added morning brushing and nite-time brushing in the daily routine. If I get 8 or more out of 14 brushing incidences, I am a happy Mentor 🙂

Now… about flossing. I explain how it has been said that the easiest way to add three years to your lives is to floss. (literally 0 Millenials I work with floss). I explain about the easy access for bacteria to get into gums with gum disease. Then I mention that if you don’t floss, you have rotting meat between your teeth. That can sometimes get us to add flossing.. once a day… a few times a week. It’s a start!

Now on to video game addiction

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Check out Ken Rabow’s blogs on Mentoring Young Adults: click here

Troubled Teens and Young Adults who Lack Motivation

For teens with anxiety, millennials dealing with self doubt, the slackers and the stoners who seem to lack motivation; there is one mantra they all share: “If I choose to fail and do… then I win”!

Let me repeat this for the high achieving, hard-working parents out there: Your child’s mantra just may be
” if I choose to fail and I do, I win”. Sends a shiver down your spine, doesn’t it? It should! It’s hard to know what is scarier. The fact that they think this or the fact that they would never tell you this. Yet, this is something I hear from new clients on a regular basis. y

Here’s the good News: They really do want to win. They just don’t have a single clue on how to do it. Let me share with you an example:

Take “Skeeter”.
A pot smoking stoner
who has made the skill of ignoring the outcome of his lack of effort in school, hygiene and relationships into and art.

What is odd is that when you get past all the negative situations that Skeeter has been through and really talk and listen to him, he really wants to succeed but he just doesn’t have a clue how to do that, so he channels all of his desires into self-sabotage. This goes on for so long that it is almost impossible for Skeeter to remember that this was a coping mechanism and not his true nature.

Given the opportunity, most people really will choose to succeed.

So what is the secret recipe. How do I get the self-sabotageurs to get “back on track”.
There are as many answers as there are clients. No two people have exactly the same road to travel but there are some common threads.

The first step is to believe that they really do want to succeed and that it is up to the Mentor to help them find “micro-successes”. Before I explain micro-successes, let me point out that what they have been learning up until now is that no matter what they are told, whatever they try will end up in failure, hurt feelings and self-loathing.

This is what I have to work with when they come to me. So why do they take a chance on my out of the box system? Because I listen. I take whatever they say seriously and I help them unpack their regular chants of “it won’t work”, “i’m just lazy” or (fill in the blank) and find their coping mechanism.

Now for the micro-successes: They are so powerfully conditioned to expect to fail that I must find the smallest little daily successes that they can see, feel, experience and start to consider that their might be the tiniest possibility that things don’t have to end badly.

That is all I ask for at the beginning.

And when things fall to poop (which they will), if we have built up enough trust and some micro-succeses, the will learn how to deal, how to assess, how to learn and finally how to grow.

It works. I feel honored every time I watch the transition and they are always in charge of what we do.

To check out Ken’s website for helping troubled teens and unmotivated millenials, click
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Mentoring Young Adults Can Help Your Child

To know why mentoring young adults may be the proper way out of the challenges many parents face these days, we must look at where so many families find themselves. There are so many parents of troubled teens and young adults who are at their wits end, not knowing how to deal with their children. Communication is an issue. Hygiene is an issue. Sleep is an issue. Video gaming and overuse of the Internet is an issue. Let’s face it, there’s a lot more of issues than anything else! Let’s look at why mentoring young adults may be the solution for your child.

Finding Success through Life Coaching Young Adults
People seek a life coach for teens and young adults when they come to a certain realization. It’s okay to have an outside party be there to create something more than medication or talk therapy may achieve. That something is a slow and steady concrete process. One that will bring hope back to your child. One of earning their own belief in themselves. To be successful and rise above challenges and failures. To learn that failures and mistakes are the route to their greatness. Most importantly, to learn the value in day-to-day simple disciplines. Disciplines based on things that they would enjoy doing, bringing a rightly earned self-confidence to them.

The Proven Method
My book “The Slacker’s Guide To Success” chronicles the entire 13 step process, but to put it in a nutshell: a young person needs to seek out a life coach that they are willing to trust and be open to trying new things with. They must then be willing to look at their goals and their challenges to succeeding and finally to start a daily chart of the small successes that will instill in them a sense of the possibility of succeeding in the real world.

How Some People Limit Struggling Teens and Young Adults
I meet so many young people that so many have said of them that they will never be able to succeed. Often, all the family and relatives were hoping for was for things to not get worse and yet these young people have soared and have found their greatness.

The ones who did not succeed, did not succeed because the expectations from their family and friends were for an immediate fix. The kind of profound inner changes I am speaking about in this article are slow and steady. But if all those concerned take the time, have the patience, determination and certitude to see this through, the rewards will be immeasurable.

Remember This:
Do not give up hope. Do not think that you are alone. Reach out for someone to help you and the changes will come. They may be slow but they will be astounding…  Ken Rabow

Update by Ken Rabow – Dec 2017
Here it is four years later and I find that in life coaching young adults, I am still finding so many teens and young adults with anxiety, sleep issues, communication challenges and more. The good news is that working with this system, mentoring young adults really does help these young people AND their families have successful lives where they can hope again for a great future.

What does it take? Find the right mentor to mentor young adults. Taking the time to let them learn the system, to create positive daily routines and grow as a young adult. To fall on their butts, dust themselves off and try again.

Mentoring young adults is not a fast solution but if it works for your child, it is a long lasting solution. Mentoring young adults can help them throughout their lives. It requires the same work to un-mess up someone as to help them find their greatness. Most parents come to us bereft of hope. They want to help their child not fail. As people mentoring young adults, we seek how to help them not only not fail but to soar to greatness. Each person has greatness in them. Sometimes a mentor is the best way forward.

To learn how to become a professional mentor for young adults, click here