Just as young children don’t want to be carried while they are learning to walk, adolescents don’t want adults making decisions for them. In fact, the more the adult tries to exert control over the youth, the more the adolescent will resist, resulting in increased discipline challenges.
Remember, the only way a child can learn to walk is to practice walking. Similarly, the only way to help youth develop responsible behavior is to allow them to practice decision-making.
Each time you make a decision for another person, you deprive that person of an opportunity for maturity and responsibility.
Will you agree with every decision the youth makes? Probably not. But without the opportunity to practice making their own decisions, adolescents won’t be able to develop this crucial lifelong skill. So rather than imposing your choices on others, give youth some leeway to make their own choices. When you do, your discipline will transform into a guiding process rather than a punitive one.