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Mindful : December 2016
A TIME OF VOLATILITY AND RISK Drinking and Drugs 1 in 5 American high-school seniors abuses alcohol at least twice a month. Illegal drug use continues to rise. Violence 40% of high-school boys have been in a physical fight in the past year. Pregnancy Nearly a third of young women will get pregnant by age 20. Suicide 8% of high school students try to commit suicide. Crime Adolescents commit most of the crimes in the US; nearly $6 billion is spent ever y year incarcerating them. Fatal Accidents Nearly half of adolescent deaths are in accidents, and 6,000 are in car crashes. WHAT CAN HELP TEENAGERS FLOURISH? Understanding Getting to know their brains: why they might be experienc- ing what they’re experiencing; knowledge is power. Trust and Respect So they can trust and respect in return, and gain indepen- dent decision-making power. Room to Take Risks To be steered away from high risks, without aggression. And given room to take moderate risks. Preaching doesn’t help. Engage Body and Mind Chances to develop more than their cognitive skills, so they can engage their whole body and mind: mindfulness, yoga, art, music, sports... To Be Listened to Deeply and consistently. Teens have novel, fresh ideas that the world needs. And they will inherit the ear th. studying social life sleep no sleep Impossible no friends bad grades THE TEEN TIME DILEMMA To get a copy of this graphic suitable for printing as a poster, and to see all of Mindful’s stories in our ongoing coverage of teenage empowerment, visit mindful.org/teenagers More Sleep! Because they’re learning so much so rapidly, the teen body and brain get a huge workout. They need refreshment: about 9-10 hours of sleep daily. But as the diagram above illustrates, many teens are expected to pull off a juggling act that wears them out. The resulting sleep deprivation can lead to a downward spiral of poor choices and weakening resilience. December 2016 mindful 71