If you’ve flown anywhere, you know that airlines charge you for checking luggage. Yep, they do everything they can to make a buck. The more bags you have, the more money you pay. It’s something we now expect. This is why I try to follow a little rule when I fly anywhere, even overseas: I don’t check any bags. I know if I’ve got baggage, it’s gonna cost me.
This is not only a reality when traveling, it’s a fact of life. Baggage fees can add up!
Many of your students are in transition. Change is in the wind. They will find that if they carry emotional baggage—they’re inviting problems. Unresolved conflicts, anger, relationship struggles at home, addictions, former partners they didn’t fully break up with, lack of forgiveness between them and a friend, insecurities, jealousy…you get the idea. These all count as excess baggage, and you can be sure it will weigh kids down. In fact, the baggage may be costly.
Psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe once scoured the medical history of thousands of people. Their goal? They hoped to answer the question of whether stress might be linked to illness. In 1967, these two doctors published their results as the “Social Readjustment Rating Scale.” Their findings include links between life changes, stress levels, and sickness. They looked at shifts in our lives such as:
• Family separation/Leaving home
• Adjustment in personal routines
• Change in financial state
• Transition in schools or new friends
• Beginning or ending school
• Shift in sleeping habits
Holmes and Rahe report that all adjustments in our lives cause stress. The level of stress parallels both the significance of each event and each person’s adaptability. The two men also agree that the kinds of changes a student experiences in transition can lead to baggage, if they don’t handle them well. Often, it leads to the following coping mechanisms in students:
Comparison – You compare yourself to others, keeping score in key areas of importance.
Condemnation – You judge others or yourself constantly, resulting in conceit or self-pity.
Control – To validate your worth, you feel you must take charge and protect your interests.
Compulsion – You’re a people pleaser, driven to perform compulsively to gain others’ approval.
Compensation – You feel like a victim and must now compensate for your losses or inferiority.
Competition – You become self-centered, determined to outdo others for attention or rewards.
One of your most important roles as a caring adult in the life of a student is to help them navigate these seasons of transition well. I am pleased to share that we are releasing a new Habitudes book to help you do just that. It’s called: Habitudes For the Journey. It will spark great conversations for students in transition. To pre-order a discounted copy, just CLICK HERE. Hope it’s helpful.