Sooo..When will Peter Pan Grow Up?

Texas Metro News-June 16, 2018

It’s graduation season. Young people across the U. S. are graduating from high school or college making their families’ proud! They have proof they cracked opened a book every now and then. So what’s next? In the past several weeks, I have asked this question to recent college and high school graduates.

Let’s start with our college graduates. After four plus years of staying up to 3 a.m. “studying”, writing papers (courtesy of the internet), involved in campus organizations, while ensuring their parents they have not developed a substance abuse problem; young people across the globe are strutting across the stage from their respective colleges/universities with a college degree. They graduate with no clue as to what they want to do with the next stage of their lives. They accomplished graduating from college, shouldn’t that be enough? I’m confident its parents may say “No!” I remember that beautiful day in May 1998 when I graduated from Texas Southern University (All roads lead to Texas Southern University-Yes, a shameless plug). When the family gathered to take pictures with me, my mother looked towards the camera, posed and whispered to me, “You’re getting your car note in 30 days”, so sentimental mom.

From that moment, I knew I needed to add an addendum to my plan. I was already in my own apartment but now I had to be more grown-up to make enough money to now add a car note to my budget. I knew I was going into education but I did not have a job under my belt yet. So I decided to work at a temp agency while working on the additional education courses needed to be a certified teacher. See Mom, a plan! What is occurring now is graduates are completing their degrees with no clue what they want to do next. So instead of working to obtain job skills, they go straight into graduate school. Do not get me wrong; it is nothing wrong with an individual enrolling into graduate school soon after completing their undergraduate studies. The issue is when graduate school is used to “buy” them some time. At some point this generation has to face the real world. It is difficult to say you are “grown” when Mom and Dad is still paying the bills.

Let’s move on to our high school graduates. Across the United States, Generation Z walked across the stage receiving their high school diploma. The families are proud and the graduation parties commenced. After the ceremony, the congratulatory hugs and gifts, and picture taking, what’s next? In my day, you had three options: colleges, military, or get a job. The first two options are self-explanatory. The third option requires clearer instructions. My mother’s generation and up belief system is, if you are still living in their house post-graduation and do not wish to go to college or the military, the young graduate is expected to get a job in order to remain in their parent’s house. It sounds straight to the point but it is not. The addendum to the clause is The Graduate is expected to work full time to save money to be out of their parent’s house within six months to a year. Now this is where the helicopter parents missed the memo. This parenting style that allows children to work and stay at home have it easier than my generation. The theory sounds the same but it is not. When old school generation says get a job it is made clear the child is to find full-time employment. Rationale: You no longer have the constraints of school and have time to work and obtain your own money. Helicopter parents are allowing their child to remain in their house with a minimum of a part-time job with the rationale the child is trying to “find their way.” Question, they can’t “find” their way working full-time? What are they doing during that idle time? Reflecting on their life’s purpose is not what they are doing.

How can Peter Pan or Petra (gender bias) grow up if the parents are enabling the immature mentality and behavior? It’s not too late to save this generation and those following behind. Students in college, should be WORKING in order to gain experience to add to their resume along with the earned degree. This notion, “I do not want my child to work while in college” is crippling them on becoming independent. A degree without experience will not equal a career that comes with an livable wage.

For the under 18 still in grades K-12, parents should help their child(ren) by guiding them towards independence. Start by having realistic conversations on life aspirations and goals. Do not squash dreams but discuss with your child if the career they have chosen is attainable. He can’t be a professional football or basketball player if he has NEVER played the game or if he does not play he does not invest time in practicing to perfect his skills. What about your daughter? She can not be a Grammy award winner singing if she sounds like a one legged cat who has been hung up by its tail looking in the eyes of a ferocious dog. Not pretty! Or if he or she says they want to be a doctor but their math and science grades are so low you wouldn’t want them to check your pulse.

Is college for everyone? No, but a life’s plan is necessary to ensure you do not have a 30 year still living in your house working part time at a local sandwich shop. Congratulations Class of 2018. Go be great!(out of your parent’s house)~Doc Shep Speaks

Dr. Felicia N. Shepherd Twitter @getfinessed Facebook-facebook.com/fnsconsulting

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Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, & Artillery!

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Published: Texas Metro News-March 11, 2018

The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018, has once again shined a light on the lack of gun control legislature in the United States. The presenting proposals and counter proposals that the bills should have been written in pencil. Years later no resolution has transpired on the regulating of gun control to assist with preventing school shootings. No worries Americans, President Trump has provided a solution to this ongoing debate. President Trump solution is to permit teachers to carry guns inside their classroom.

As I reflect on my time as a former classroom teacher and school counselor, I feel I can honestly say if the current educators were anything like me it would not be wise to allow them to carry weapons into the classroom. As a classroom teacher, I was not very good with organization. So because I would not feel comfortable keeping a loaded gun in my classroom, the bullets would be kept in locked box with the gun. Now I placed that box and key for that matter would be the issue. If a shooter came into my classroom, what would you like for me say? “Sir, don’t move let me find the key to the box that I have my gun. Better yet, hold on sir; let me load my gun real quick. So I can shoot you.”  

Teachers already have it tough with teaching, now you want to stress them more with determining if a situation warrants pulling out a gun and taking someone’s life? Speaking of taking someone’s life. Our fearless leader, as he sees himself, feels not only should teachers be permitted to have guns in a classroom but also they should receive a monetary bonus if they elect to carry a gun into their classroom. Interesting. When it comes to school funding, lawmakers are reluctant to give salaries increases to teachers, money for textbooks, and will cut the art and music programs as a solution to save money. However, there is money in the budget to provide bonuses if they decide to be  “strapped” when teaching. If Miss Washington wants little Timmy to pay attention in math class, having a holster strapped to her waist while teaching long division will definitely keep his attention and maybe wet his pants.

Gun policy in America is needed. With mass shootings becoming so commonplace many feel Americans are becoming desensitized. Are we? We are saddened and frustrated but it is back to business as usual until the next shooting. There is no such thing as a perfect policy on this issue. However a policy that limits who can purchase guns is better than no policy at all. To the educators, parents, and students, continue to fight to be heard. The president may not hear you, but the rest of Americans do.~Doc Shep Speaks

 

Doc Shep Speaks

Dr. Felicia N. Shepherd, Founder/C.E.O FiNeSse Consulting-FiNeSse Enterprises, LLC

Twitter-@getfinessed

Facebook-www.facebook.com/fnsconsulting

http://www.fnsconsultingservices.com

 

Mean Girls-The Untold Story

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend a high school football game. I have not been to a game since…well I think I was in high school. (No funny comments). I could not help but to be observant of how the girls were interacting with each other. I went to the restroom, because it was clear I was not going to miss any important football action…(Score was 71 to 0) I congregated in the area I saw the most teens. As I was listening to the girls talking amongst each other, I was warm with joy to hear them talking about girly girl stuff (clothes, boys, and even school work). I saw girls just enjoying each other’s company at a high school football game. I couldn’t help myself. I walked up to a group of girls, introduce myself and told them I was author of a book about mean girls. “Cool!” “Awesome!” “Much Needed!” was the response I got from them. They were in the 9th grade.

I asked one question “How do the girls get along in your grade level?” They first was hesitate to answer my question. I said it is for research for the book. I will not use your names. This adorable Black girl said with a bubbly voice,”Oh Ok” and started talking. lol She said, “I can only speak for myself, but I think the girls are pretty good at getting along with each other here.” The others nodded in agreement. The White girl next to her chimed in and said “Yea..we have our good days and bad days but I think we get along fine.” She goes on to say, “Messy girls was at my last school but they are pretty cool here”.

I thanked them for talking with me and gave one of them my business card just so they can see I was legit and wasn’t interrogating them for no reason. 🙂

My point of this post. These are the untold stories. The stories that suggests it is possible for girls to get along. So Kudos to the girls, parents, and the school. Even though this same school bullied (joke) the poor team they were playing. I mean really, 71 to 0! That’s just cruel. 🙂

Those young girls gave me motivation and validation and they didn’t even know it. They validated why I am passionate about what I do. I want to see girls understanding how to get along with each other in a positive constructive manner. Its ok if you do not like each other. That’s ok because depending on personalities, clashes may occur. However, it is important to remain respectful towards each other. I am not asking girls to hold hands and sing “We are the World” but I definitely don’t want to see them acting out scenes from the Bad Girls Club.

Thanks freshman girls! You are ok in my book!

Message from FiNeSse Consulting

Don’t forget to check out my book promotional webpage at www.omgnomeangirlsbook.com

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Girl Talk 101-CAN WE TALK?

Question: Why can’t grown women have a civilized conversation?

Well isn’t that a loaded question? Well Shepherd how about an answer? Ok, here is my take on the situation. I was talking to my grandfather the other day and I asked him this same question. He told me parents typically taught the boys to speak up for themselves but the girls had to be quiet and genteel. He goes on to say, “Was it right? I thought so at the time?” My 96 year old grandfather said back then if a woman spoke up for herself, she was considered being argumentative and would most likely NEVER get a man. As the generations of women continue to grow shouldn’t that have changed slightly? It certainly has in the women versus men debate. Women will question, analyze, and interrogate a man to the point of submission, but will not carry that same intensity in settling differences between other females. Why? We are so passive aggressive with a species that knows and understands the trials of being a female. As a former school counselor, I often found myself putting the “Female Wars” out on a daily basis. Female Wars means all the fights and arguments that occur in the land of Girls’ World. Example:

Story Alert: LaTisha was “beefing” (yes I said “beefing”, trying to be hip) with Madison because Randale told her that Maison was talking about her and her family, who didn’t have a lot of money. LaTisha is of course mad that Madison was talking about her behind her back. Instead of LaTisha asking Madison about what was said, she decided to remain quiet and didn’t talk to Madison for days. Note: In Girls’ World, days can feel like years.

Madison is confused on why her friend is being sileint with her. Madison decides to ask LaTisha what is going on. When she approaches LaTisha, Madison is calm and friendly. She asked “Hey, girl whats up? I haven’t spoken to you in days.” LaTisha Girl’s World response “Whatever”. Madison looks confused and ask again “What’s Up?” Instead of LaTisha explaining what the problem was she rudely said, “F*ck Up B@tch, you know what you did.” and walked off. NOW tempers are flaring. Madison is ticked off. Her friend just curse at her and she doesn’t know why.

Additional days go by when a teacher brings the matter to me. The girls had become so disruptive that they are disturbing the classroom environment. I now have LaTisha and Madison in my office and if looks could kill, both of them (not me of course) would be leaving the school in body bags. In my awesome “counselory” voice, I ask “What’s going on ladies?” and the Sonic Boom drops! Everyone is talking at the same time giving me a migrane. Long story short..it took almost 30 minutes to get to the root of the problem. Finally, LaTisha tells Madison what Randale told her what Madison said about her and her family. Madison admits she said it but not in the manner Randale is portraying. LaTisha said “If I wanted the world to know my family is poor, I would have told them!” she shouts. I expressed to her that I understood and to calm down. I sent for Randale since she is the third party that has cause this issue. In the land of Girls’ World there is ALWAYS a third party. Madison explained that she did say that LaTisha didn’t have a lot of money and that she felt sorry for her. She said “LaTisha, I’m sorry girl. You right.. it wasn’t my place to tell your family’s business. I promise I didn’t say it in a mean way.. honest!” Randale comes in and I asked her about the issue. Of course Randale is sticking with she didn’t say anything to anybody. After 30 minutes of rants, you know I was not about to be calm and patience with this, but surprisingly the counselor was. I laid out all the information that was shared between LaTisha and Madison and asked Randale again. Still playing the victim card that she, Randale, has said anything and is don’t appreciate being accused. I could tell LaTisha and Madison is getting the bigger picture of what is going on. LaTisha and Madison decided to disregard Randale and to forgive each other.

Weeks of non-talking came down to a 45 minute meeting in my office. I end this post with this..if we teach our young girls/adult women the following, then MAYBE they will not grow up to be women who carry on in the same manner.

Steps to Remember:

1. Remain calm-Do not address an issue when emotions are running high.

2. Ask Questions-In a calm voice, ask the necessary questions that will get to the bottom of the conflict.

3. Listen-If you ask a question, wait for a response.

4. Resolution-Find a peaceful resolution to the problem where both parties are satisfied.

Lets put away the Passive Aggressive Mentality and Talk to One Another!

Happy Chatting Ladies!!

Excerpt from Oh My Gosh! Not Another Mean Girl: How to help Girls with Relational Aggression. Reserve your copy today at www.fnsconsultingservices.com

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