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Avoid your danger zones

Certain places locations and activities are common situations in which we tend to display our bad habits...

  • Restaurants with large fatty portions of food
  • The road we drive home on with the fast food restaurants
  • The alley where you purchase drugs on the way home from school
  • The food court at the mall

...Sometimes, unfortunately, the worse place for bad habits is right in your own home. Maybe a particular room or activity in your house is your danger zone. Maybe you need to avoid...

  • Eating in front of the television
  • Sitting alone in your room with the door closed
  • Staying up late with nothing to do

Teens with home-access to alcohol are more likely to drink frequently. Teens with easy home-access to guns are more likely to commit violent acts and to have suicidal thoughts. The same goes for cigarettes, marijuana, compulsive eating, etc. If you need to occupy your time with activities outside of the home, do so. Join a sport, take music lessons, an art class, a youth group, volunteer, etc.

On the other hand, maybe your danger zone is the overload of extracurricular activities in your daily schedule. Teens that work over 20 hours a week during the school year exhibit higher amounts of emotional distress and increased use of cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana. Maybe your danger zone is work. Many bad habits stem from stress or emotional distress. Maybe what you need is less work-related stress and more rest and relaxation.

Maybe your danger zone is the place where you hang out with friends. Do your friends encourage negative behavior when you all hang out together? You might consider going out with your friends one at a time to avoid the peer pressure of the group. Maybe you could meet some healthy friends in addition to your current friends, by joining a club or sport, to gain some healthier influences in your life.

When we spend time in these danger zones, we are more likely to give in to our negative behaviors. Don't go there, period. Stop watching TV. Stop going to those restaurants. Take a different route home. If your social life revolves around food or drugs, find a different place to go, and a different activity in which to socialize. Varsity or intramural sports, dance class, volunteering, clubs etc. Not only do these activities occupy your time in a healthy way. They provide places to socialize and to meet healthy fun people.

Related Info

If you're in a danger zone, find an alternative environment more suited to success.

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