tradecraft…boundaries (part I)

boundaries: preface

one of the best things that an adult…who is working with kids (and especially, an adult who is raising kids)…can do–to bring up responsible young people–is to give their toddlers, children, and teens boundaries…even their ‘tweens’ in a lot cases–especially, when you consider that the pre-frontal cortex isn’t fully developed until people are on their way past ‘legal adulthood’ as defined by state laws…you know the part of the brain i’m talking about…the part that controls impulsive behavior and the ability to make good decisions 🙂

in my opinon, all kids need boundaries…expecting a kid to function positively and responsibly in the world without good boundaries is like expecting a house to stand without a solid foundation…it’s just not gonna happen, folks…

one of my favorite gems on this topic comes from child and family expert, dr. david walsh:

“it’s a kid’s job to test limits, it’s our job (responsible parents and other adults) to set limits–in saying ‘no’ to our kids…we are (hopefully) teaching them to say ‘no’ to themselves (some day)” (walsh, 2014)…

importantly, one of the single most important ‘trade skills’ in working effectively with young people is establishing good and reasonable boundaries for kids to know and follow…i mean, how can any teacher, counselor, para, social worker, coach, youth leader, juvenile justice worker, or parent instruct a young person if that young person is doing what they want to do when they want to do it…with no regard for anyone else around them?!

this is a part of instructing our youth that we need to return to wholeheartedly and fearlessly in our society, in america…i would argue that there’s never been a more important time for us to get back to the ‘world of boundaries’ than right now…because it’s something we’ve strayed away from…and we can see the results reflected in how young people see themselves and act in the world today…it’s not a pretty sight

so, with that…we begin a new series on boundaries…

stay tuned…

[i would like give a special ‘shout out’ to family friend and proud parent of two, rachel s.–who called for some special attention to this subject back when i wrote the post titled, ‘know your role’–so, while it’s a bit late in coming…this series is for you, sister! cheers!]

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