With all the anti-bullying campaigns and movements, there’s still no shortage of bullying reported almost daily on the evening news, including the recent cancellation of the football season at Sayreville High School.
Could it be that we focus too much on the problem, instead of giving teens the tools and filters to really understand what “think before you speak” actually means?
How do you teach kids to engage their brain before their mouth –or in today’s technology driven world, their fingers too?
In support of Bully Prevention Month, I want to share with you my favorite workshop and speaking topic: “THINK Before You Speak, Write or Post.”
It’s a great place to start the conversation with teens to help them break down challenging situations:
T : is it True?
H: is it Helpful?
I: is it Inspiring
N: is it Necessary?
K: is it Kind ?
When I have presented THINK to schools, this simple “filter” has not only helped with bully prevention, but it has also decreased the infamous middle and high school drama. Kids begin to realize that listening to gossip, spreading gossip, and talking “trash” about someone is bullying. THINK is a simple exercise to give teens a whole new perspective on the power of their words and actions.
What I love about THINK is that it translates across their lives, throughout their life. They learn to THINK before speaking, writing and posting on social media (btw, don’t you wish some of your facebook friends used this tool?!).
Our children are growing up in a digital world and what they post becomes their blueprint - it’s permanent. Their brains are not fully developed to understand the consequences, so we need to give our kids the tools to help them THINK things through.
Most importantly, this tool (with consistent awareness and practice) starts to cultivate a culture of kindness - and a healthier life!
~Julie Brower, Certified Teen Life Coach, Health Coach & Teen Yoga Teacher, has helped hundreds of teen girls gain knowledge, tools, confidence and courage to make decisions from a place of self-knowledge, self-respect and strength. Through one-on-one coaching, group workshops, events, parties and movement, Julie connects with girls on their level and gets results.