Family Advocate Offers Tips for Parents, Students Who Face Challenges

Published: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 at 04:39 PM.

    Parents: Reestablish order within the home using open communication (honest conversations about what each of you needs and wants) and sit down together to establish the rules. Consequences for infractions should be known in advance and follow-through is a must. Also, help your child with his or her self-confidence; children who lack confidence often choose self-sabotage when faced with challenges.

    Child: All kids struggle with finding their own identity; don’t be afraid to be unique. Living life on your own terms and not those of the herd is a lifestyle choice every leader must make. Leaders are confident, funny, generous, intelligent, classy and independent people – basically, what everyone wants to be.

   • Issue: A bright student isn’t reaching his or her potential and seems to have no interest in striving for excellence at anything.

    Parents: Help your child discover and identify his passions and talents by identifying an area of interest he’d like to explore. Understand that he or she may be afraid of failure and may lack the confidence to try new things. That’s where your 100 percent faith in him will be crucial! Set goals related to achievement in his area of interest and help motivate him by providing the education, tools and resources he or she needs to succeed.

    Child: A lot of students do just enough to get by in school, and that attitude seeps into every aspect of their lives, from relationships with the opposite sex to sports to earning money. Some kids will use the excuse that they weren’t born with the advantages – academic talent, money, whatever – necessary to succeed, so why try? The truth is everyone is born with what they need to succeed. But the kids who approach learning with a mindset of “I will master this” will always be more successful than the rest. A good place to start? Find something that excites you.

    • Issue: Parents have tried every punishment and nothing works. Their child still gets into trouble every week.

    Parents: Take a deep breath and remind yourself that becoming frustrated and expressing frustration rarely leads to good problem-solving. Instead, calmly focus on creating family rules and structure, rather than new punishments. Then, in communication with the child, focus on creating a vision for his life by identifying a passion, finding skills to build on, learning, and creating a plan of action.

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