Very few things are as enriching and encouraging to modern parents as seeing kids helping kids. In a society that is filled with the search for instantaneous gratification, we are all hard-pressed to see genuine person-to-person interaction that is mutually beneficial. It’s even more encouraging when the interaction is voluntary and comes from a younger crowd.
When a person enters their teen years, it is often the case that an attitude of self-absorption emerges. Yes, it’s quite natural. Teens are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to gain attention and accolades. What teens do not understand early enough is that accolades and recognition are often preceded by dedication and hard work.
For a teen, being recognized for something is a favored form of receiving love. This is true even for things that aren’t material like showing reserve, maintaining a household tradition, or being the even-tempered member of the family. Despite all of their awkwardness, teenagers are bursting (in their own ways), with the need to show, and be shown, love and recognition.
Putting Talent to Work
Some lucky parents are the guardians of teens who have a very noticeable talent. This can include athletic ability, academic ease, or a gravitation to a specific form of art. Having a teen with a particular talent is a wonderful opportunity. That talent is a gateway to helping the teen launch into a mode of healthy and constructive interaction with others.
Many teens show a talent for music. It can be playing an instrument, writing music, or singing. Teenagers who love to sing, and who are good at it, are particularly interesting. Not only is their musical talent based on an instrument that doesn’t cost anything, but they tend to be very expressive early. Finding singing opportunities for teenagers is simple if the focus remains on a service-oriented goal.
Singing, Volunteering, Growing
There are many community organizations that thrive on the involvement of singing teens who are willing to share their talents. These are wonderful open doors that do not require a professional level of ability, but produce amazing results in a teen’s life. They offer a continual stage where singing teens can gain experience performing, be part of a humanitarian effort, and receive truly beneficial feedback and recognition.
While some parents have teens with immense talent and freedom, many parents have children who are not so lucky. These kids are stuck in hospitals, group homes, special needs facilities, or have debilitating conditions that make communication itself difficult. Thank goodness the power of music and giving has been proven the world over.
When a teen volunteers for one of these organizations, they have continual encouragement to share. Something like a teen entertaining a group of peers who do not normally experience music is, well, magical. Instead of a barrage of messages that suggest having stuff is the most important part of life, teens on a volunteer stage learn that relationships are more important. They might receive unwanted comments at home or at school, but when they sing to people who truly appreciate it, it’s always positive and spiritually nourishing.
So, if your teenager is expressing a love of music through singing, create a situation where it can be expressed to others. Get them involved in an organization that allows them to share, provides positive feedback, and teaches them the value of helping others. It could also eventually open a path to a professional singing career. They’ll quickly learn what musical performance is really all about.