10 Things Teens Need to Know

Mike Morgan - a pizza guy

1. Your friends matter.

You pick who your friends are. If they are going nowhere, you will be riding shotgun. Get new friends. Involve yourself with a peer group that is heading in the direction you want to go. You can’t be motivated and inspired by scrubs who do nothing but smoke and drink. If you are the scrub I am talking about, tell your friends to get some new friends….they’ll thank you later.

2. Don’t mess up your credit.

Messing up your credit as a young adult will keep you on the outside looking in for many years. The ability to have access to reasonable interest rates for cars, credit cards and even a home are central to being able to flourish in our modern society. Our economy will punish you for having bad credit. Businesses prey on people with bad credit. They lurk in the shadows and spring out to saddle the people with payday advances and predatory interest rates. Don’t be a victim.

3. Don’t have unprotected sex with people who you don’t want to be tied to for the rest of your life.

Sex makes babies. If the person you are about to lay down with is a scumbag, find somebody else to lay down with…it is simply not worth the risk. The things that make someone a good candidate to get busy with are not the same things that will make them a good mother/father of your future child.  

4. Fall in love with hard work.

You can’t avoid hard work if you want things worth having in your life. Embrace the grind of working your ass off to get what you want. “Today I will do what others won’t. So tomorrow I can do what others can’t."

5. Relationships are partnerships, not consolidations.

When you get into a relationship with another person, the idea is to make something better than the sum of the parts. To create new happiness and joy that cannot be achieved separately. Don’t lose your individuality in the process however. Be who you are. Seek a mate that will accept you for who you are. Love wholeheartedly, but know that it will be ok if things don’t work out.

6. Don’t become boy/girl crazy as a teenager.

Young love is fun. Just don’t overdo it. As a teenager, there is much to do to prepare one’s self for adulthood/college. Getting buried in an unending stream of charged emotions is a surefire way to get off track. It is doubtful that boyfriend or girlfriend you have when you are 14 is going to be with you for the rest of your life. You will have plenty of time in your late teens and twenties to get caught up in relationship drama, don’t worry.

7. Be nice to people.

Being a jackass is funny sometimes. But being mean to other people just makes you an ass. All the people you go to school with or hang around have their own challenges they deal with every day. Try to be a positive part of people’s lives. Do random acts of kindness. Treat people like you want to be treated. Don’t forget, with social media, these people you go to school with will be floating around your life for many years. You don’t want to be known as the a-hole that treated everybody like $%&#.

8. Take it easy on Social Media.

Whatever you post online is there forever. Everybody from your girlfriends/boyfriends parents, HR person from the job you applied for, your grandmother or just about anybody can find everything you have ever done within a few seconds of searching. Think about it, if your son brought home some girl and you found a picture of her burning a blunt with a bunch of dudes at a house party….I’m guessing she would not be on your “keeper” list. Is that who you want your son to spend the rest of his life with? The mother of your future grandchildren? Also, for god’s sake….make your profiles private….can you really be that stupid?!?!

9. Drugs are for irresponsible adults, not irresponsible kids.

It is super easy to get weed as a teen. You will have a decision to make. Just wait until you are an adult and then decide if you want to smoke the tweeds. Weed can help you to have a good time with your friends but it can also rob you of initiative at a time in your life when you sorely need it. Weed will also help you to craft elaborate excuses and conspiracies for why you can’t get a job…while the real reason is resting between your fingers. If you want to grow up and smoke everything in sight, feel free to do so. But get your education, grow up and get a job first.

10. Learn how to deal with money.

You need to learn to build a healthy relationship with money. Don’t spend every penny you make. Learn how to live within your means. Learn that no matter how much money you make, if you live paycheck to paycheck, you will never feel financial secure. Don’t lend people money, they will not pay you back…and you’ll be pissed. Spend more money on experiences and less money on “things”. Pay your debts on time and in full. Rent/mortgage goes before everything else…being hungry with a roof over your head is better than being homeless with a full stomach.