Don’t Talk To Strangers in 2014

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What Does Your “Don’t Talk To Strangers” Look Like in 2014? I am almost 40 – yep, not embarrassed to say it.  I think age is a state of mind and an adventure.  When I was 10, I remember some sort of big dog animal character coming to our school and talking  about safety with stickers and bags.  Things like “don’t talk to people you don’t know,”  “don’t get near the car if someone you don’t know is trying to talk to you,”  “don’t take food from someone you don’t know.”  The basics.  I also remember something about a razor blade in Halloween candy on the news at some point in time, but for the most part I was well cared for… I was watched after … I was rarely in a situation where someone could approach me. I also grew up in a big city (mostly) and my mom and dad would warn me about things I would see and tell me how to protect myself.  Looking back, I think that was really helpful. There is something else in my youth that was pretty scary.   Someone tried to kidnap my mom in the 50’s – yep, it happened even back then but the news didn’t sensationalize it.  That scared me pretty good. Oh and one more thing … in college three cars tried to push me off the road to car jack me and who knows what else, BUT my instincts took over and I avoided what could have been a fatal afternoon.  This has influenced me as well. OUR NOW INCLUDES NEW CHALLENGES In 2014, the continuous dialogue with my children is very different and I wanted to share it with you.  Not only do I have to talk to my kids about the birds and the bees, children their own age, bullying, inappropriate touching and the fact that all adults are not always to be trusted …. but I also have to talk to them about body image, body image in the media, self empowerment, loving yourself above all other thoughts, not letting what other people think you should be make you change who you are, being completely responsible for your actions and not letting fear or exposure to something that you feel ashamed about influence your decisions or control your life. Not to mention – the Internet and Internet safety, internet porn (inappropriate videos), chat rooms, social media traps and safety, people pretending to be someone else, texting,  phone calls, images through the phone or over the internet, voice mail, answering the phone or door, information you don’t give out, constant awareness of your surrounding, guns, drugs, alcohol and sex trafficking. All of this without scaring them to death and letting them know that the world is mostly good.  If you follow your gut feelings and stay true to yourself, love yourself and expect that the people you surround yourself will treat you with that same love, life is good. THESE ARE MY RULES… I hope you will create your own: 1.  Drill in general safety rules to the point that they could repeat them in their sleep – make their reactions automatic and without question.  This saved me once that I know of and who knows how many times in life. 2.  Minimize opportunity – most crimes occur because there was an opportunity – an unlocked door, a responsive child.  By being vigilant, involved and aware, you minimize the risk for your children greatly. 3.  Talk openly about current events and ask lots of questions – how they would have handled the situation or what the person hurt could have done differently.  Could this have been avoided all together.  How to recover.  What to do if you are in the situation.  Ideas on how to get out of the situation.  I really like the last one because I get my kids to think and problem solve on their own.  This will help them maneuver all sorts of things in life! 4.  Talk about things at different times of the day and in different settings.  I always read my children first.  Sometimes I ask about something at breakfast or bring something up about a topic.  After school we talk about the day, so sometimes something has happened that allows us to talk about safety.  If we are out in public and see something, there is another chance. 5.  Only talk to the age – leave out things they won’t understand or simplify in the terms of the age appropriate mind.  I test the waters and go a little further than I am comfortable with something to see how they react and if they know what different things are or have heard of them.  This helps find that right balance. AND ABOVE ALL ELSE – If I could pick just one thing to say to them over and over it is: NO MATTER WHAT YOU HAVE DONE.  WHAT SOMEONE HAS DONE TO YOU.  WHAT YOU ARE SCARED TO TELL OR WHAT AN ADULT HAS SAID WILL MAKE THEM HURT YOU.  Come tell Mommy and Daddy.  You cannot tell us a single thing that would make us not love you more and we will help you every time, without question.  NEVER LET BEING SCARED OR ASHAMED KEEP YOU FROM BEING SAFE AND HAPPY.    ...

Wake Up

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Wake Up Tool:  Stay Conscious “… Consciousness is critical for making a big change and for creating lasting success. And I’m not just talking about a daily check-in with yourself. Or a weekly journal entry on a chart. I’m talking about actually inhabiting your life, eyes wide open, on every level. Through every moment. I’m talking about deliberately noticing what you are doing. And why. I’m talking about being interested in your life. Curious about yourself. Living your life as though it matters. To you. …” Continue Reading This excerpt was taken from Meadow DeVor’s Article “Stay...

Radical Action

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The most amazing and inspiring information comes from a woman I inherently  trust; Meadow Devor.  Her latest post may inspire you to do something radical: Radical Action by Meadow Devor Once we know the truth, our decision has been made and our target is in focus –  it’s time for our next move. Radical Action. Radical Action is doing anything and everything to jump start the change process. We must become a fanatic. We must be willing to create significant and extreme change. Now. Radical Action means sacrificing more than we ever want to. And working harder than we ever thought possible. It’s about stretching our strength. Our resolve. It’s a memo to the universe that we’re serious. And that we’ll do what it takes. It seals our self-promise in blood. Sweat. Maybe even tears. If we’re not serious about changing, this step will be painful. Maybe even excruciating. It will eventually cripple us. And stop us in our tracks. But if we are serious about changing, this step will be laughable. Comical. We’ll see how simple it is to apply effort and see change happening right before our eyes. We’ll see ourselves as the creator of this change. And we’ll love it. This step separates the talkers from the doers. It leverages our investment in the change process and catapults us toward success. .. Read the rest of this article...