RAISING TEENAGERS WITH A DIFFERENCE  by David Charim

The teenage years is the most challenging stage of the life for youngsters. It is the peak of the human experience. A season where emotional passions are yearning for expression. It is a time where the tables of their heart longs for tempting experiences and open to new or alluring glitz and glamour.

Gullible teenagers due to lack of proper parental care, unchecked peer pressures or environmental influences are led to juvenile delinquencies and vices like thuggery, drug abuse and prostitution or worse.

How can these challenges be confronted and conquered by the teenager?

1. Get them Inspired
2. Teach them to Aspire
3. Tell them about Resilience

*THE POWER OF INSPIRATION*
The glories of great men are in their stories. Feats accomplished by achievers can be intimidating but when stories are told about their lives it inspires. In those days portraits of Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Ghandi and Abraham Lincoln on the school walls raises curiosity. When their stories are told they spark up a fire that I can amount to something great in life against all odds.

*THE PURPOSE OF ASPIRATION*
A story was shared of how a graduating class was asked this question, “What will you be when you grow up?” and “Do you clearly written down your goals in life?”
10℅ said “YES”
15℅ said “Not really”
75℅ said “Who cares”

25 years later, only the 10% with clearly written down goals became great in life.
If you do not write down what you desire to achieve in life you only have a wish and it is said that if wishes were horses beggars will ride.
Any written dream or vision is called a goal

*THE POWER OF RESILIENCE*
It is common knowledge that teenagers want everything to happen so fast and so quick. They just want to have it and have it big but the journey of life is not a straight line to success and achievement. The path towards greatness has thorns, turns and twists. However, dreams are achievable against all odds. The graduating class should know that greatness comes to those who are determined despite discouragement. Those who endure no matter the pressure or lack along the way.
Patience is a virtue of the brave.

So, what would you want to be in the future? What is your dream? Do you have a vision of your tomorrow?

*CONCLUSION*
Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”
What you believe will determine what you will become.
A teenager was told that he can not pass Mathematics and as long as he believed that he kept failing. Another was told she cannot amount to anything in life and her classmates mocked her saying “blocked head”
The boy later became a Doctor after discovering that understanding Maths is not a mystery but giving the subject extra time and working on solved examples and the application of formula.
The girl grew up believing that nothing good can ever come out of her. She was forced into early marriage. She got a divorce at age 21. She resulted to prostitution and died few years later.

Always remember, that the outcomes of our lives is the function of what we believe and how we go about it.

Do not live your life by default but live your life by design. Success is not a product of a wish but a conscious, intentional and deliberate effort required to accomplish tasks and achieve dreams.
Finally, teach teenage students to know that 20 friends or classmates will not stay together for 20 years. Let them know that life is not a bed of roses but in all they can be all they want to be if they refuse to give up. Every problem has a solution. Find the solution and the world will celebrate you.
Cheers

*© Dr. David Victor Charima* is a Special Aide to the Deputy Governor of Taraba State.
He’s also an Author, Resource/Public Speaker and is currently a Senior Lecturer at Taraba Business School Jalingo

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