FIND A SANCTUARY. Find a safe place where you don’t have to worry about being bothered and where you can relax and think.
CHANGE YOUR PERCEPTIONS. Anger, sadness, depression and hopelessness (all strong emotions) affect a person’s ability to see the many sides of a situation. Strong emotions may give a person something called “tunnel vision”. This means that only one view can be seen and none of the others. Often, someone who is not emotionally involved can help you take a fresh look at the situation and come up with options and solutions. With patience, you will find a solution to every problem.
LOOK FOR THE GOOD. Everywhere, every moment and every situation, look for the good and positive. There are many things to be grateful for in your life – from your health to the people who care about you to the safe places where you can go. Think about what your life would be like if you didn’t have good health, someone to turn to, or somewhere to go. Often, you are fortunate to have, you tip the scale from the despair and sadness to hope and an expectation that everything will turn out okay in time.
PUT IT IN PERSPECTIVE. Will this problem or situation really matter to you in ten years, five years, or even one year? How does this situation affect the big picture? Chances are, what you are most concerned with right now will not be remembered in the months or years to come.
DISCOVER WHO YOU ARE. You are here for a reason, a purpose. You were given certain strengths and talents. What are they? How can you develop your strengths and use them to help yourself through this situation and prepare for your future?
TRANSCEND (RISE ABOVE) YOUR ENVIRONMENT. Be who you truly are. Don’t get caught up in what anyone else says, does, or thinks about you. Regardless of who may be trying to hold you back, remember who you are and what you need to do to succeed.
Get HELP. Everyone needs help. Find a trusted adult or a resource (a school, community, or national organization) that can give you the information, support, and guidance you need. Find someone you can trust and who can help you work through your problems.
TURN OFF THE TELEVISION. Television can be entertainment, but it can also cause disappointment and sadness and fuel misperceptions about life. On television, families and people’s lives all seem to be perfect, or their problems can be worked out within a half hour. These portrayals are very unrealistic and people may begin to compare their less than perfect lives with what they see on television. This cause a person to feel like her/his life is nothing special or, even worse, a nightmare. Cut back on the hours you spend in front of the television. Try to limit what you see to programs that make you feel bad about yourself or who only add to your problems. Turn off music or other influence that describe the negative aspects of life or negative ways to handle problems. Cigarettes, alcohol, and other drugs only complicate life and create huge problems later down the road. Avoid these things at all costs.
BE CAREFUL WHERE YOU TURN! Beware of people who suggest that you use drugs or violence or join a gang to help you solve problems. There are those who are constantly looking for young people who are vulnerable (weak in their ability to make good decisions), or in difficult situations so that they can take advantage of them. Often these people will come across as being very nice and will try to gain your trust. Once they think they have your trust, they may fill your head with bad information or try to persuade you into drug use, gang involvement, or other bad ideas. Be aware that not everyone who offers you a hand helps you.
KEEP GOING! No matter how difficult it gets or how hopeless it seems, your life will improve – as long as you keep trying.
YOU ARE YOUR OWN PERSON; DON’T LET ANYONE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF YOU!!!
Source: Basso, M.J. (2003). The underground guide to teenage sexuality
(2nd ed.).USA: Fairview press.