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Thursday, August 12, 2010

20 Reason Why Good Kids Make Bad Choices!

Every day in our communities good kids make bad choices. As a crime and violence prevention consultant, I have compiled a list of 20 reasons as to why this is so. I have found that these reasons generally fall under the two general categories of loss of family or loss of community.
1. 50% of marriages end in divorce - 1 in 4 women in abusive relationships - Children learn behavior from adults.
2. Adult bullies: Mental abuse with put downs, insults, belittling, cursing, screaming and controlling without listening or guiding.
3. Physical abuse: hitting, whipping, slapping, kicking or sexual abuse of a child.
4. Bio-parents have authority to discipline and guide children, stepparents, boy friends or girl friends do not.
5. Emotional women (crying, pleading, begging) lose their authority with teens, especially boys.
6. Adults, who don’t listen, send a message… ”I don’t care.” Children become frustrated, lack self-confidence and may become socially isolated.
7. Neglect and abuse creates anger. Anger prevents emotional growth and a lack of self-awareness, which puts youth at risk.
8. Parents who can’t say NO, will experience resentment, anger and disrespect. They are teaching their child to be self-absorbed!
9. The neglect of a child's spirit: If adults fail to teach children about their awesome inner power and potential, they may not value themselves or others.
10. Bullies are emotionally “off-center” with a wounded spirit: This child uses intimidation and fear to gain power and control over others...and to hide their pain.
11. Pincushion kids (victims) are emotionally “off-center” with a wounded spirit: Shy, sensitive children may feel inadequate, suffer in silence and become easy targets. Bullies and victims are often attracted to each other.
12. Bullies and “Pincushion" kids (sensitive) lack healthy role models. Strong “centered” adults create a network of support, listen and stay calm when disciplining and guiding children.
13. Children lacking spiritual values and support do not discover a healthy balance between ego and spirit. Peers can become their teachers as they experiment with drugs, alcohol, sex or other self-destructive behaviors.
14. Youth, unable to cope or “fit in,” can become disconnected from family, friends and feel alone. They are likely candidates to dropout of school, join gangs or become addicted to drugs. Some may even runaway and become homeless.

15. The loss of neighborhood support creates more social isolation for families. Youth do not see neighbors as role models, mentors or problem solvers working together to keep their neighborhood safe for everyone.
16. Gangs, drugs and violence become a life style for alienated youth. Gangs use fear to control neighborhoods as they become role models for children. Rival gangs kill for power. (Primitive ego-driven tribal behavior) Note: Terrorist use the same tactics to gain power and control over others.
17. Violent movies, video games and TV reinforce the bully/victim behavior for disconnected youth. Sex and violence used to degrade and control women.
18. Easy access to drugs (escape from reality) and guns (power tool for youth disconnected from community).
19. The religious community has lost influence with many of today’s families due to scandals, corruption and the sexual abuse of children.
20. Religion, the foundation of a free society, has neglected to reach out and “Love thy Neighbor.” Working together…the religious community has the power to bring neighbors together, become role models for youth and create peaceful communities.

Every bully, delinquent, truant, abuse victim, drug dealer, gang member, and child struggling to grow up with drugs and/or domestic violence lives in somebody’s neighborhood.

By Stephanie L. Mann, Family and Neighborhoods Safety Consultant
Join “Safe Kids Now Mailing List" and learn what YOU can do to keep children safe.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

10 Things more important than money$$

By Scott Hammond
Author: Become A Better Father

Too often in our capitalistic society, we place too much emphasis on financial achievement and too little on the importance of living a purpose driven life.

1. Family… your spouse, your parents, and her kids should come first. Just simply providing for them does not make your family, your number one priority. There is far more you can do for them with quality and quantity time. Love is spelled…. TIME.

2. Friends… the older some of us get, the less time we have for our friends. Some people get too busy climbing the success ladder and may not even make time for friends. Big mistake. So many things in our society are disposable, and sadly, friends too often fall into that category. Take time to invest in your friendships, both old and new. How hard is it to schedule a Starbucks coffee, pick up the phone, or write an e-mail?

3. Your health… stress, poor diet, lack of exercise, poor relationships with you and your family… all of these can adversely affect your health. Getting caught up in your career and working endless hours can also lead to neglect of one’s health. Workaholism can be deadly. The lack of discipline in making exercise, sleep, a good diet, and a healthy lifestyle can be dangerous if not deadly as well. You get one body, take care of it and treat it with the respect it deserves.

4. Kids… investing in your kids is absolutely one of the best investments you can make. Understanding how to relate to, love, care for, and communicate with your kids is vital to becoming a more fulfilled and complete person. Our future is our children. What kind of legacy are you leaving behind? Relationships that are fully orbed or just a fat portfolio?

5. Education… being a lifelong learner is a lifelong process. It’s not about being enrolled in the school or a fancy college or receiving a piece of paper. It is, however, about being someone who is hungry to learn, willing to change, and ready to embrace new ways of looking at life and the universe. As long as you have your mental capacities, you can keep learning and building on what you already know. Your mind is a terrible thing to waste.

6. Having fun… people get so caught up in society’s money game that wealth becomes an addiction, an obsession, and the purpose for their existence. How many wealthy people aren’t healthy people who spend far too much time and energy chasing promotions, money, and possessions. We can end up with lots of toys and turn out to be pretty unhappy people… big mistake.

7. Solving social problems… how can you be a voice in society for those who do not have the ability to speak for themselves? Whether it’s poverty, divorce, suicide, teenage pregnancy, name your issue… you can have a voice and be part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Your community is full of opportunities for you to volunteer, donate time or money, and get involved.

8. Your neighbors… give the neighbors a chance. Don’t write them off because they aren’t the same age, race, or occupation as you. What’s the sense of neglecting neighbors, since they can be sources of friendship, if given a chance? Part of our connection to the greater society is defined by our neighborhoods, which are full of neighbors— who could be friends we haven’t met yet.

9. Appreciating/valuing what you have…
right now make a list of 10 things that you really appreciate. What is on your list? Despite our overall affluence, we still lament material things we lack rather than appreciating and valuing the material and nonmaterial things we do have. Don’t forget relationships.

10. Your reputation… a good name is to be had above riches. It takes a lifetime to build a reputation, but only moments to lose it. We chase after many things in life, and we often de-value and under-invest in relationships which should have our focus and priority. How many men have thrown it all away in a quick but twisted attempt at some forbidden fruit?

For More information about "Become A Better Father"

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Kids in Crisis: Share your ideas!

The California Youth Crisis Line receives around 21,000 calls annually. Youth are calling about homelessness, depression, teen pregnancy, substance abuse, suicide and more. Budget cuts are limiting crisis line services.

Share your thoughts! What can citizens do to help youth get connected?