It is so easy to get wrapped up in what we don’t have and haven’t accomplished that we don’t always realize what we do have. It’s easy to feel like we’re not doing as well as we should, but sometimes we have to pay attention and measure our progress more objectively. Here are 12 signs you’re […]
The challenge of timing. If you are waiting for the perfect time to start your goal, it probably will never happen. Don’t get me wrong, timing is important; but finding the perfect time is rare. There is always going to be a challenge whenever you start; it is likely the reason you have the goal in the first place! The key is to get started and make progress. Starting off with a bang is not as important as making consistent progress. As you make progress, you can always add to what you are doing to reach your goal. Stay encouraged and don’t give up! You may need to put your goal or dream on pause, but you don’t have to abandon it. One thing I know for sure: if you quit, you definitely won’t reach your goal. You’re on the clock!
The Holiday Season is a time for spiritual appreciation and fellowship with friends and family. Unfortunately, popular culture is transforming the Holiday Season into a yearly occurrence of heightened consumerism. The pressure to purchase and give seems to be increasing with each year that passes.
This Holiday Season, I have been encouraged to reflect upon how these pressures impact the high school students I teach. I work at a school with an economically disadvantaged population of approximately 65%. This means 65% of our students qualify for free and reduced lunches because their family income is near or below the poverty level. I also have students whose families are considered homeless. Fortunately, these families have shelter and working parents; unfortunately, they are unable to pay for their own residences due to circumstances.
My principal communicated to the faculty the need to have an increased awareness for “acting out” behaviors from our students during the Holiday Season. I understand how a disadvantaged teen would feel highly frustrated during this time of year. Teens are highly self-conscious and have a growing awareness of their circumstances compared to younger children. Younger children tend to only “know what they know.” Their world is very much parent centered and controlled; in many ways, this is beneficial in limiting influences, yet is harmful if the child has abusive parents. On the other hand, teens are beginning to realize there is a much bigger world out there. However, their ability to immediately improve their situations may be limited due to age and maturity. The constant cycle of ads on television, radio, and online can impact impressionable minds. Obviously, this leads to feelings of helplessness and frustration, resulting in certain moods and behaviors. I’m sure we have a number of students who look forward to the holidays being over and returning to the routine of school. Those of us who interact with youth need to have a heightened awareness for these issues during this time of year and be a light.