Providential Journeys

L I F E   C O A C H I N G 

In This Issue
FREE Tips for Parents of Teens!
How to Get Your Teen Talking
NEW Group Program
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MaryAnn Dolezal

Christian Life Coach

Certified Wellness Inventory Facillitator


MaryAnn is the owner of Providential Journeys Life Coaching, a Board Certified Coach, and mom and step-mom of three.


She is passionate about helping people who struggle with relational conflicts learn what they are and are not responsible for, so that they can break free of toxic mind-sets, and experience freedom of choice, a sense of peace, and learn to love themselves and others from a place of abundance, rather than fear, overwhelm, and guilt!


In addition to one-on-one coaching, MaryAnn conducts group programs, workshops, and pressentations on healthy boundaries and parenting teens.



20 Ways To Connect With Your Teen
Download your FREE copy! (click here)

How to Get Your Teen Talking


This Sunday, of course, is Mother's Day. For those of you who are moms, I pray that you are affirmed and appreciated by your loved ones for all of the ways in which you nurture and serve them.


For many women, however, this day can be a painful reminder of broken dreams, or ones that never realized. For a single mom struggling to raise her kids and maintain her household, the classic Hallmark occasion is often missed in the absence of a loving spouse.  


So whether you are a mom or not, perhaps an aunt or mentor, I pray that you experience joy, knowing that your smile, your grace, and your generous nature matters dearly to those whose lives you touch!


If you have been struggling in your role as a Parent of a Teen, or if you would simply like to add to parenting toolbox, then I invite you to join me in a NEW Group Program - Pro-Active Parent Coaching - beginning May 29th!


Be sure to check out my 20 Ways to Connect With Your Teen and download your free copy!  If you know of others struggling to survive through the parenting of their teens - please pass these resources along!

How to Get Your Teen Talking...or At Least Thinking


It is roughly 37 days until my daughter turns 13. Although we enjoy much more one-on-one time than most parent-teen relationships, I am aware that her words have become much more selective and few over the last year or so.

And I am aware that if I'm juggling too much, and allow myself to "manage" her in a "fire prevention" sort of way, that I tend to focus on the outcomes, the "bottom lines." And, then she responds with as few words as possible!  

If I desire to stay connected with her over the next decade of her life's journey, then I will need to be consciously aware of the types of questions that I ask.

Many of the questions we often ask our kids are really just polite ways of asking for reports or executive summaries:


How was school? Did you finish your English paper on time? How did you do on your math test? Did you win the soccer game? How many goals did you score?


If your teen is like most teens, then 90 percent of the time all you'll get is a one word response to any of these questions: 


Good. Yeah. Okay. Yeah. Some. A few.


From a teen's perspective, the less information they provide to their parents, the better. When in doubt, they stay vague, especially if it pertains to anything related to parental evaluation.


If you want to encourage your teen to think, and possibly even respond, you'll need to shift your focus from the outcome toward the process.


If you take another look at the list of typical questions from above, you'll realize that they're all outcome-based questions that require nothing more than a one-sentence response at best.


Although nothing is wrong with these questions (and please understand that I'm not suggesting we not hold kids to certain goals and achievements), they will rarely start the kinds of conversations that will strengthen or develop a strong connection to each other.


To illustrate the difference, I'll share the following conversations:


(Outcome focus)

Mom: Hey hon, great job today!

Child: ...but I didn't win.

Mom: No, but you ran a good race.

Child: Yeah, I guess.



(Process focus)

Mom: Hey, I really enjoyed watching your races today. Every time you run, I notice that you really accelerate around the 2nd and 3rd turns - are you aware that you're doing that?

Child: No, what do you mean?

Mom: Well, for about half of the race, you hold about the same distance from the others, but then, all of a sudden, you start visibly narrowing the gap, usually around the 2nd/3rd turn, and you seem to hold that pace while the others drop off. What are you thinking then?

Child: I don't really know...hmmm

Mom: It's really exciting for me to watch you do that!

Child: Thanks!

At first glance, and just word count, it may not appear that these two conversations yielded much difference from the child. But in looking closer, you may see that in the first, the child resisted the parent's opinion - she still felt down because she didn't win. In the second conversation, the parent shared her observations of what she observed, and inquired about her thoughts at the time.


At this age, it's common for kids to be completely unaware of their thinking processes (don't be surprised to hear "I don't know" initially) and yet, if we leverage such opportunities, we can get them curious about them, and help them to develop their awareness. Helping them to develop that awareness in the "easy areas" could give them the ability to call on that process when faced with the "hard areas" where they'd otherwise react impulsively!


It's hard to tell whether or not it was a correlation or coincidence at the next meet, but the mom shared that her child seemed to pour it on even more in the 2nd & 3rd turn - and won her first race!


A little while later on their way home she shared this conversation:


Child: Hey Mom, remember when I was little how I used to run around the backyard pretending that I was "Stripes?" (from a movie of the same name)

Mom: (smiling and remembering) Yeah hon - what made you think of that?

Child: I don't know, ...but don't tell my friends!


For those unfamiliar with the movie, "Stripes", the hero is an unlikely, come-from-behind winner!


Pro-Active Parent Coaching


Ever wished that you...

  • had a deeper connection with your teens?
  • knew when to release responsibility to them?
  • knew how to better support their growth in maturity?
  • had a way to unlock the mystery of God's work in their lives? 

 This program offers a simple Parent-coaching model that can help you gently shift to a unique parenting plan that emulates God's approach to supporting relationship and growth with us as His children.  

The Parent-coaching model presented in this program helps parents of adolescents and teens smoothly transition in their role.


You will discover how to...

  • work with your child's own growth patterns.
  • release responsibility in a healthy manner.
  • support and encourage their development.
  • cultivate relationships that will last a lifetime.


This 7-week Group Program begins May 29th! for further information and to register

My challenge to you:

What difference do you notice internally when you are asked "process" vs. "outcome" questions?  


What types of questions do you typically ask?


How could shifting your focus to "process" impact your connection to and conversations with loved ones?




MaryAnn Dolezal

Providential Journeys Life Coaching

Your Path - His Plan


"For I know the plans I have for you..."  Jer. 29:11-13

Please feel free to encourage others by forwarding this newletter and its contents to family, friends and colleagues!