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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Take The Stress Out Of Teaching Your Kids To Drive - s post

For the vast majority of people in the U.S., driving is a major component of their day. A commute to work or school, running various errands, making trips for fun, chances are that you’re not getting any of these done without going behind the wheel. This, combined with the sense of independence, makes learning to drive an important rite of passage for teens of all kinds, and a moment many parents are dreading. Whether your teen is overzealous or overcautious about their time to drive, here are a few things you can do to lower the stress level for both you and your child.

Setting The Stage

For starters, not everyone is ready to start at the same time. Don’t try to force the issue of driving if your teen feels they aren’t ready, as someone anxious behind the wheel can be dangerous. At the same time, though, time waits for no one, so you want to try and get your teen ready. Depending on their temperament, it may make more sense just to start slow, but to start nonetheless.
To try and minimize this stress, make sure that you do a little pre-planning about the area you are going to do a practice drive in. Depending on their confidence, you may not want to go to a busy area right away, but you will want to do different types of areas to raise that confidence and also get them valuable experience in different driving situations they will encounter on their own. Another thing to do during the process is to start leading by example. Many teens, as they ramp up to drive, take a closer look at how you drive. Risky or reckless behavior is not the type of things you want them to pick up, much like anything else, really.

Tips For Teaching

Now, what about when you are actually on the road? For one thing, communication definitely matters. A recent study profiled 217 pairs of parents and teens, who used a driving program to help them teach. According to the study, the most common utterance from parents was “You need to slow down,” and 1 in 5 comments about driving were critical. This was often met with defensive behavior from the teens—the type of back and forth that can sink a good lesson.

One good alternative that was found was to replace criticism with open-ended questions. For example, if your teen accidentally rolls through a stop sign, ask them something like “Tell me about how you handled the intersection back there.” Next, listen to the answer, and say, “So you did sort of a rolling stop?” At this point, you need to give an explanation why not doing a  proper stop is bad at that point. Science showed that this method was linked to a 21% decrease in risky behavior in teen drivers.

Every actual teacher needs a lesson plan to lay out to themselves and administration exactly how they are going to hit all the major points they need to in order to give their students the necessary knowledge they need. This may not be a bad idea for driving training as well. This doesn’t have to be formal, but it can give you an idea of what topics you have already covered and things that you may have missed. Organizing them in a certain order can make sure you save some of the more difficult concepts for later, when your teen is more confident.

Important topics to keep in mind for your plan include:

·       How to fuel up and check fluids
·       Adjusting your mirrors/seats
·       Shifting gears
·       How to back up properly
·       Signaling to other drivers
·       Tuning out distractions
·       Handling intersections
·       Making lane changes
·       Parking (angle, parallel, 90 degree)

This is only a sampling, but it gives you an idea of the volume of topics you have to cover.
Another thing that you should discuss (but maybe not while you’re behind the wheel) is what to do when an accident does occur. There is an average of 6 million accidents in this country each year, and while not all of them end with people injured while driving, you still want to be prepared. This means telling your child to remain calm, get the necessary insurance information, and have a way to contact you so they can be aware of what happens.

Learning to drive is an exciting time for any teen, so you want to do what you can to make it a smooth transition.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Filing for Divorce? 7 Things You Need to Know - s post

Made the decision to file for divorce? Or perhaps you have been separated for some time, and you're now ready to make it official?

Before going further, here are 7 things experts want you to know before you begin the process.

1. Spousal support is not guaranteed.

According to Miller & Steiert, divorce lawyers in Denver, “Maintenance, also known as spousal support, isn't part of every divorce case. When considering maintenance awards, the court will look at the finances of both spouses, what time is needed for that spouse to get an education or training that will help him or her get an appropriate job, and how the couple lived during the marriage. The physical age, health and emotional condition of the spouse seeking support is also considered, along with the length of the marriage. Spousal support is not meant to be permanent; it's a short-term net so the receiving spouse can get back on his or her feet post-divorce.”

2. Lawyers are not financial advisers.

Experts over at suggest that you hire and consult a financial adviser if you are considering a divorce. They warn it could be the difference between financial stability and financial disaster. Unfortunately, many people ask for advice when it is too late. That is, after the papers have been signed. But the time to do it is when negotiations are still open. Also, while lawyers can give you legal counsel, they are not financial advisers, and shouldn't be looked on as such.

3. Living on one income will require financial adjustments.

Up till now, you have likely been living off two incomes. With two incomes, you could afford a couple vacations a year and less mindfulness about small purchases made on the fly. On a single budget, things will look and feel different for you. You will need to adjust accordingly so that you don't overspend in the months immediately following your separation.

4. Parenting plans help smooth out rough spots.

Have children? Establishing a parenting plan as soon as possible will help you both have a clear idea of what is expected of each. Many snags can be ironed out beforehand by agreeing up front on the following:

Ÿ   how the child divides time between each parent
Ÿ   how information relating to school and other factors is shared between parents
Ÿ   how decisions are made regarding the child's health
Ÿ   how parenting decisions are made regarding other aspects of the child's life

5. Divorce doesn't erase all your problems.

Were you expecting a happily ever after once you got that problem partner out of your life? Unfortunately, life does not often work out according to our fantasies. If children are involved, you will likely still be in contact with your ex-partner to discuss parenting issues. And even if you have no children, you will need time to heal from the emotional stress of a difficult relationship. Few lives are entirely free of problems. But choosing your battles and understanding what steps to take to solve them is half the battle won.

6. Be prepared for lots of emotions.

Regardless of who initiated the split, a divorce often comes with feelings of sadness, grief, loss, and anxiety. Depression is also common for those going through a separation. Knowing that these feelings are natural to those in your situation can help you weather the storm. As you learn to let go of your previous relationship and the baggage that comes with it, you may be hit with guilt and feelings of inadequacy. Have a trusted friend or family member on speed dial. Keeping a brave face is okay for certain situations, but also know when asking for help is the right thing to do.

7. Counseling and therapy help.

Having the support of family and friends is invaluable for your emotional recovery. However, getting professional counseling is a step that can make sure that you do not strain your close relationships.

Certain professional counselors and therapists specialize in helping people work through a divorce. And can give you specific counsel and advice for your situation. Having an outside party, one who is not closely connected to your personal life, give you their perspective can be invaluable. If you are unsure if professional help is right for you, try out one session. Often, individuals make exponential progress in many areas of their life through seeing a therapist. And counseling can be a springboard for growth in areas that have remained stagnant for a long time.


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