Being a teenager is not easy. Many teens struggle keeping up with peer pressure and trying to figure out where they fit in. This can sometimes cause them to make not so great choices. However if your teen has good self self-esteem, they are more likely to make better choices. Enjoy this guest post and especially during the holiday “time-off” take the time to be sure your teen is feeling good about themselves!
Self-esteem is a delectate issue in your teen’s life. This is a time in their lives when they are changing mentally, physically and emotionally. It’s important to help your teen but also know that this something they can only control, all you can do is assist. Address the issue or issues your teen seems to be facing, whether its low self-esteem based on appearance or grades, you can help. Here are some ways to boost your teen’s self-esteem.
1. Volunteer- When you do something good for someone else it makes you feel better. Sign your teen up with a program or organization that he/she can help with. Whether it is helping once a week or once a month, the act of giving is crucial. Check out your local soup kitchen or animal shelter and get them started today. Not only are the people and animals benefitting but so is your teen.
2. Hobbies-Talk with your teen and see what activities interest them. This may require lots of talking and observation. Take note in their everyday activities and pick up on signs of when, how and what makes them smile. For example you can sign them up for painting classes or get them books on a topic they like.
3. Exercise- There are many studies that show, when a person exercise they are much happier. According to www.Livestrong.com, ‘Running is a great way to rev up your metabolism and increase your energy levels. Cross country skiing is the only physical activity that burns more calories than running. Running releases endorphins, the chemicals in the brain that make you feel happy; this is how the expression “Runner’s high” came about.’ So get them outside and active!
4. Remove Negativity: Be sure to support your teen in all he or she does. Keeping a positive and happy vibe in the home will make them feel good. Keep negative words like: ‘ugly and fat’ out of your vocabulary. You would be surprised to how much teens listen to what you say. Just because you should remove negativity doesn’t mean you stop parenting. Discipline when necessary but keep in mind in day to day life, remain positive.
5. Friends: Your teen’s friends have a huge impact on your teen’s life. Be sure that your teen is hanging out with the ‘right crowd’. A good way to assess this situation is to invite their friends over for dinner. You will be able to judge if you think they are helping or hurting your teen’s self-esteem. If they are helping, then great, invite them over more often. If their friendship is not benefitting your teen, be sure to promote the positive friends in their lives more.
Remember this is a sensitive time for teens and nothing can help a teen like a supportive and loving parent. Follow these guidelines and listen to your kids. Happy boosting!
Nancy Parker was a professional nanny and she loves to write about wide range of subjects like health, Parenting, Child Care, and Babysitting, find a nanny tips etc. You can reach her @ nancy.parker015 @ gmail.com.
PS: Adults can use these tips too! Thanks Nancy for sharing these tips!
Saturday, December 31, 2011
Saturday, December 24, 2011
For anyone who has lost a loved one due to suicide, it is one of the most painful issues they will ever face; sometimes leaving an overwhelming sense of doubt, guilt, and silence enfolding the circle of friends and family like no other experience can. In the wake of this tragedy, we are painfully forced to question- What could I have done? Could I have made a difference? Why didn’t I know?
We don’t have a life to lose in this world. We must confront suicide and suicidal thoughts openly and honestly, and use every opportunity to make a difference by breaking the silence and suffering. Ten years ago the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention was launched. Its objectives galvanized the country around a common goal. As a result, we have advanced the science and support for suicide prevention programs nationwide.
New suicide prevention work has emerged across the Departments of Defense, Veterans Affairs, Health and Human Services and others. One notable achievement is the establishment of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – 1-800-273-TALK (8255), a number that can be dialed anywhere in the United States to connect the caller with confidential and expert help.
To accelerate the action needed to prevent suicide, former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius launched the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention with the charge to advance and update the National Strategy. The Action Alliance brings together public, private and nonprofit partners to engage every sector of society with a vision of ending the tragic experience of suicide in America.
Facebook is an important part of that partnership, and the new initiative to augment its response to potentially suicidal members by offering the opportunity for a private chat with a trained crisis representative from the Suicide Prevention Lifeline in addition to providing the Lifeline’s phone number. This service will be available to people who use Facebook in the United States and Canada.
The new service enables Facebook users to report a suicidal comment they see posted by a friend to Facebook using either the Report Suicidal Content link or the report links found throughout the site. The person who posted the suicidal comment will then immediately receive an e-mail from Facebook encouraging them to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or to click on a link to begin a confidential chat session with a crisis worker.
Preventing suicide is everyone’s business. Nearly 100 Americans die by suicide every day, and in the past year, more than eight million Americans 18 or older had thought seriously about suicide. As members of a family, a school, business, neighborhood, faith communities, friends, and our government, we all need to work together to solve this problem.
We simply can no longer allow those we live, work and play with to ever believe that suicide is an acceptable solution even in the worst of times. Everyone needs to learn about the symptoms of mental illnesses and substance abuse, the warning signs of suicide, how to stand with and support someone who is in crisis, and how to get someone you care about the help they need.
Most of all, we need to be open to talking about these issues in our communities. Once we begin to support those in need, and whenever possible treat their mental and substance use disorders with the same urgency as any other health condition, we will reduce the rates of suicide, advance health and improve the use of limited health care dollars.
Learn more about the partnership between Facebook, SAMHSA and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
Saturday, December 17, 2011
Parenting includes many sensitive talks with our children, however the birds and the bees still remains one of the most difficult for many parents.
It seems we are starting it a younger age than generations earlier!
Sex education isn’t necessarily something people like to talk about, but it’s certainly necessary. Without sex education (and often, even with), teens can get into trouble with pregnancy, abortion, STDs, and even AIDS, all of which can have a negative impact on their lives and future happiness. Awareness and education are important, but they’re not always the same. Sex education has changed considerably in recent years, with abstinence-only education, sex education for younger children, and more, so it’s worth taking a look at some new developments in the field. Read on, and we’ll discuss 20 new trends that are going on in sex education right now.
- Guttmacher Institute fact sheet on American teens’ sources of information about sex, 46% of males and 36% of females reported that they didn’t receive formal instructions about contraception before having sex for the first time.
- even death metal bands get in on the action.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
The study found 46 percent of young adults aged 18 to 24 prefer access to the Internet over access to their own car, and that teens drive less overall today than they did in past generations. Comparatively, only 15 percent of baby boomers said they would choose a mobile device over an automobile.
The advent of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter is likely responsible, as they create an interactive, fun world that’s accessible anytime, from almost anywhere. For teenagers who want to stay connected to their friends, social networks provides an ideal platform for communication.
Public transportation and hitching rides from parents also give teenagers more time to stay connected to their social world via their smartphones, making driving seem an unnecessary hassle that interrupts their social life.
Thilo Koslowski, lead automotive analyst for Gartner, said, “Mobile devices, gadgets and the Internet are becoming must-have lifestyle products that convey status,” and devices “offer a degree of freedom and social reach that previously only the automobile offered.”
To keep up with the trend, the auto industry has gradually begun integrating smartphone-type features like built-in GPS devices, Bluetooth, and iPod docks into their newest car models. In the future, auto makers may increase such features in hopes of making cars more of a “must have” for teens.
“We are not looking at this to ask how we can get teens to buy a car versus an iPhone,” says K. Venkatesh Prasad, senior technical leader of open innovation at Ford. “Instead, the car has to become more than just a car. It has to become an experience.”
Parents, meanwhile, may sleep a little easier knowing their kids are at home and not out engaging in dangerous behaviors like texting while driving. The trend may also be easier on the family finances, as parents won’t be pressured to buy an expensive automobile for their teens.
However, concerns have been raised about whether social networking can ever truly replace face-to-face social interaction. Teens need a balance of online interaction and real time hanging out with friends. The balance can be difficult to attain, since the lure of social networks can be all-consuming.
The auto industry hopes the open road still holds a classic allure, but how teens navigate that road may change in the near future. Automatic Foursquare check-ins and voice recognition systems are already being tested in cars, marking a new trajectory for teens and the auto industry alike.
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Friday, December 2, 2011
What role model are you setting for your kids?
Approximately fifteen hundred high school seniors were recently asked basic facts about personal finance, and the great majority were stumped for answers. The results were not promising for our children’s future:
REALITY CHECK: 95% of teens surveyed scored below a C in financial literacy.
Wonder why? Another survey finds a key reason for teens’ low financial scores:
REALITY CHECK: 80% of all college freshman admit to never having a conversation with their parents about managing their money. What’s more, almost one in four of these same teens say it’s just fine to blow as much as $500 without checking in with their parents.
The findings are hardly a proud parenting moment, but I also hope you are starting to get my drift.
The truth is too many kids are flunking financial literacy and one big reason may be that we’ve failed to teach our children a few essential “money smart lessons.”
If you’re concerned about your kids’ future spending habits, then start your money talk now and there’s no better time than these next few weeks. Newspapers will be filled with coupons and penny savers. Television ads for holidays “deals” will air non-stop. Teen magazines will feature those supposed holiday “in” gadgets and “must have” items. Those are also perfect opportunities to let your kids know that money doesn’t come easy. It’s also the time to review that you do have clear expectations and limits about your family’s spending during the holidays. Here are a few ways to weave in those crucial money chats over the coming weeks with your kids.
Kids look to us as the example to copy so how are you doing in modeling money smarts to your children? Are your kids seeing you cut out those coupons? Waiting for the right price?
Displaying smart spending habits? Prioritizing your must-haves? Beware that your children learn spending and saving habits from you. How are you doing?
- Monitor TV Consumption: Television is the one of the biggest culprits in fueling kids’ spending urges, and commercials are relentless in trying to get kids to buy, buy, buy. Research also shows that media impacts our children’s money attitudes and increases materialism. During the next few weeks those retailers will be pushing products and urging your kids to spend. So beware of those advertisements! Do take time to explain to your kids the real intention of those advertisers.
- Use Real-Life Examples: Take your child shopping with you. I dare ya! But when–or if–you do, show him how you compare prices. Explain to her how you look for bargains. Use those outings as teaching moments that do instill good shopping habits.
- Teach Bargain Hunting: If your kids are purchasing gifts for siblings (or even you!) get them involved inchecking out those penny saver ads. Have them clip out coupons. Tune your kids into the bargains at those dollar stores. Hit the outlet malls, and don’t overlook thrift stores and even garage sales. And tell them to watch for sales! Grandma will never know if her present was ten dollars less because Johnny waited to buy until sales day.
- Cut Impulsive Shopping: Set a household rule that your child must write down any pricier intended purchase, and then postpone buying it for at least twenty-four hours. It’s a great way to teach kids to delay gratification and to “Think” before spending. A younger kid can draw it on her “wish list.”The wait time could vary from an hour or day to a week or month depending on the child’s age and maturity. If your kid loses interest before the time is up, even she will agree that she didn’t really want that item after all.
- Teach “Wants vs. Needs”: This is the “Gotta Have It NOW Generation” so a big step in helping today’s kids learn to be smart spenders is teaching the difference between “want it…” vs. “need it.” The trick is to get your kids to assess what they already have that is still in good shape and can be recycled, what’s missing and then what’s really needed is on the “need” list and holiday request list. Now your kids can create a holiday wish list based on real needs not wants to help prioritize spending.
- Do One Store Shopping to Boost Consumer Skills: Your kids planning to do their own holiday shopping? If so, this is a great way to help teach them consumer skills. Consider choosing just one store that has the best bargains to take the kids this year (like Wall Mart, Target, K-Mart) for their gift-buying. By announcing, “We’re shopping only at this store,” the kids are forced to look for the best bargains in one place and you won’t find yourself driving to multiple stores (and bringing back multiple items). This is also the time for them to bring their coupons and shopping lists. Make sure you also have them compare prices of items so they understand value.
- Consider After-Holidays Gift Buying: Seriously! I know more families who realize the best deals are December 26. Those parents set a new rule: “You receive a few items under the tree but wait for that pricier item the day after the holidays.” The kids learn to appreciate the value of a good deal, the parents are grateful to save a ton of money, and the whole family enjoys that day after shopping outing for everyone’s “one special–and better-priced-gift.”
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Michele Borba is the author of over 25 parenting books including The Big Book of Parenting Solutions.