- During these years teens can have different kinds of moods and feelings. They might show intense emotions and strong feelings that fluctuate and change at different times. Moreover, these moods might seem really unpredictable. However, a teen’s brain is still learning how to express and regulate emotions. Therefore, it’s normal for them to have increased emotionality as they begin to navigate adaptive coping skills and emotion regulation skills.
- As someone gets older, they will be better at processing emotions. That is to say, during this time teens start to be able to read and process emotions and expressions. They become more sensitive to other people’s emotions. However, sometimes they might misread some facial expressions and body language and have to navigate some of those conflicts as a result of their developing skills.
- In this time of change, a teen becomes more self-conscious, especially about their physical appearance. Their physical appearance often affects a teens’ self-esteem. At this time, it is common for teens to compare themselves to their peers and their friends.
- During this time, their decision making skills are developing as their frontal cortex and amygdala are rapidly changing. Thus, acting more reckless or without fear might become more common. This is a big learning stage as they start to learn that their reckless actions may have consequences.
There are two major developmental tasks that are intertwined and interdependent for a teen’s social and emotional growth.
- Developing new friendships
- Learning to understand and express complex emotions