What Teens Can Learn from a Recession

Parents most likely already know that there are many great life lessons that can be learned from going through troubled times.  A national recession is one of those instances.  Today’s struggling economy and all of the financial woes that accompany it not only are affecting the working-class adults in our society, but they are trickling down to the teen population, as well.  Some teens have lost their part-time jobs due to budget cuts.  Others are noticing that there are fewer jobs available, in general.  In addition, many teens report having to eliminate their extracurricular activities and money worries are causing an increase in anxiety among many teens.  Like all other hardships, though, teens can learn some valuable lessons from the current economic climate.

The Importance of Living within Your Means
Most households stick to some sort of loose budgetary system, but these constraints don’t always have a profound effect on teens.  Today, however, many teens are coming under the some of the same budget limitations as their parents.  In many families,   fashionable is currently out and frugal is in.

Living within a specified budget can be beneficial to teens in that it teaches them some important skills like conserving energy and tempering their impulses to buy things. Budgeting expenses also involves being able to define the differences between what a person wants and what they truly need.

The Importance of a Good Attitude
Going through tough times not only affects finances, but it can put a severe strain on relationships, as well.  Parents have a good opportunity during a recession to show their teen that things don’t always go according to plan and that circumstances often call for a flexible approach.  To adjust to hard economic times, a good attitude is a valuable asset to acquire.  Not only does a good positive attitude help ease the burden of the current situation, but learning to maintaining that good attitude will also serve teens in the future as they run up against life’s subsequent challenges.

The Importance of Caring For Others
A teen’s first experience with the effects of a recession is likely to be observed in their own household.  Teens who may be witnessing their parents suffer under economic collapse are helping out more around the house by pitching in with chores and taking care of siblings.  They are helping their parents conserve and becoming more responsible.  Most of all, they are developing a keen awareness of the needs of other people, which will have far-reaching effects in their communities and in their lives.
Without a doubt, the ongoing downturn in our economy has impacted teens adversely, but some positives are coming from it, as well. Teens are finding a new appreciation for hard-working parents; they are becoming cognizant of the needs of others; and they are asking more profound questions about money and becoming more interested in how to manage finances well.

Recessions are a fact of life.  In fact, history says that teenagers today will most likely experience at least one more major economic recession in their lifetime.  But by learning valuable and eye-opening lessons from their circumstances, teens can be better equipped to weather hard times that may come in the future.

About Melissa J. Murphy

Melissa Murphy is in the business of building self-esteem, instilling confidence, and restoring hope in those who have given up on life. She is currently completing her degree in psychology, and has worked as a life coach and faith-based counselor for more than a decade. By bringing her personal life experiences into her work, Melissa is able to help others survive their wounds, heal their pain, and live a life of success despite having incurred overwhelming emotional scars. For the last few years, she has discovered the joys of writing and has published a growing number of articles. Melissa currently resides in the Houston area with her husband and her two wonderful children.

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