• Residential Treatment Center for Teens 14-17

Authenticity Training May Help Decrease Teen Anger

Authenticity Training May Help Decrease Teen Anger

Authenticity Training May Help Decrease Teen Anger 150 150 se_admin

What is authenticity? To Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow, authenticity is about nature-fulfillment. It’s about being true to our intrinsic interests, innate strengths, and being self-determined. From the humanistic perspective, the more authenticity we have, the greater amount of compassion, altruism, and acceptance towards others we should show. According to a recent Psychology Today article, teaching authenticity to adolescents may be a way to curb teen anger.

Research connecting the two

The authenticity rooted in humanistic values has been shown to lead to less angry responses. In a study at the University of Leicester, researchers got individuals to partake in a computer scenario. The participants just had to press a button depending on a message that would appear on the screen–if they pressed a specific button during the time given, they could earn points that could be exchanged for money.

There was a twist, though.

Individuals were told they were competing against another person that could steal points from them. The scenario was supposed to mimic a real-life situation in which someone may take credit for another’s work. Unbeknownst to the participant, they were never actually playing another person. The researchers wanted to see if someone thought someone was stealing their points, they would begin to play the game in an aggressive way. To measure aggression, they told the participants that they could now steal points from the person stealing their points.

For participants that were considered very authentic, they had a lower chance of responding in an aggressive manner. They showed less punitive behavior and continued to work hard to get points themselves instead of stealing.

Authenticity and teen anger

While this study doesn’t prove directly that authenticity inspires less teen anger, it does show that there’s a strong correlation. But how do you teach authenticity? There’s no formula for it, but we know what authenticity is, so maybe we can go from there.

Encouraging your child to try new things, even in the face of possible failure, is one way you can teach them authenticity. Teach them to be kind to others, even when they’re not kind to you. Teach them that hard work earns you success, not cutting corners and stealing. Teen anger is part of going through puberty, but for many people it follows them into adulthood. During these years, it’s important for us–as parents–to act as guides and help our children develop healthy habits as best we can.

Solstice East can help

Solstice East is a residential treatment center for girls, ages 14 to 18, grappling with depression, anxiety, trauma, teen anger, and other emotional or behavioral problems. We strive to help our girls develop healthy habits for teens and lead themselves back onto a path of success and happiness.

For more information about how Solstice East handles out of control teen anger, please call 828-484-9946.