The winner of a copy of Andy Stanley’s book Communicating for a Change is Jackie Dummer who left her comment on Aug. 16 at 6:54 am. Yay, Jackie!
Today we have a guest post from Lynn Cowell who has found her niche in speaking to teens and moms of teens. She has some terrific tips on speaking to teens. I think there’s a lot of wisdom in her post for all us Speaker Girls!
Top Five Tips for Speaking to Teens
With mentoring teens for over ten years and having three of my own, I’ve gathered a few tips on speaking to teens:
1) Be direct and honest.
One of the best compliments I received was from 19 year old named Andi. “You are raw and direct.” I wasn’t sure how to take it until she added “That is great!” If you are speaking on a tough issue, like purity for instance, you can still speak truth into teens’ lives even if you’re teen years were rough. It is very important, however, to be honest. You’ll lose all creditability and opportunities for future invest if you are not honest.
2) Be vulnerable
When you are vulnerable, it creates a foundation for being heard. I’m not saying you have to spill your entire heart, but give them reason to believe you are real. Connect any point you make to a story; they will remember your story long after you are gone.
3) Be informed
If you want to be relevant, you have to know what is going on. Spend time with teens. Cook with them. Eat with them. Hang out with them. Read up on what is going on in their culture. This shows that you care about them.
4) Be approachable
Teens don’t need another authority figure in their lives. They have enough parents, coaches and teachers. They need a safe place to ask questions and be themselves. Listen and when the time is right and you have earned the right, speak truth.
5) Be available.
If you are speaking at an event, do not spend all of your time with the event planner, worship team or parents attending. Be with the kids. Eat by them. Sit by them. Talk to them. If you do, you will get to pray with them.
Lynn Cowell is the author of “His Revolutionary Love; Jesus’ Radical Pursuit of You” a study for girls ages 12 – 18. She conducts “Revolutionary Love” conferences around the country empowering girls to find confidence in true love leading to wise choices. Connect with her at www.LynnCowell.com, Facebook at Lynn Martin Cowell and on Twitter at Lynn Cowell.