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6 Steps To Helping Your Teen Balance Work & School
by Annagail Lynes
11/30/03
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Are you still looking for ways to balance your home life with your work life? So is your teen. He has to rush to school in the morning, basketball practice after school, then to his job in the evening. When he comes home, he finishes his homework. He loses sleep, isnít eating well and is short tempered. These are signs of stress. And if they arenít dealt with, he may become sick or even fall asleep while driving, causing harm to himself and others.

How can you help him balance work, school and his other commitments? Here are six steps to guide you:

1. Before he searches for a job, sit down with your teen. Make a list of his commitments, then decide what days and times he can work.

2. When he is offered a job, ask for a job description. If the job demands too much or will be too tiring, consider turning it down.

3. Figure out a transportation schedule. If he doesnít have a car, other transportation, such as taking the bus or riding his bike, must be discussed.

4. Once he has accepted a job, respect his choice. Encourage him to be on time for every shift and to be respectful to his customers and supervisors. Explain to him that skipping shifts to hang out with his friends is not an option.

5. Track his progress in school. Grades and test papers are an excellent way to do this. Feel free to check with his teachers as well.

6. If signs of stress occur, sit down and figure out what commitments need to be dropped.

Planning ahead will reduce your teenís stress. With a good nightís sleep, proper eating habits and less stress, your teen will achieve more. He will get better grades, be more productive at work and be less of a bear to live with.




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