Teens, decide to be a contributor and not just a consumer

Decide to be a host not a guest in the world - be a contributor and not just a consumer. Becoming independent has as much to do with the way we think as it does with being physically capable.

When you become an adult, you start to realise that the world doesn't just revolve around you, that you are part of something bigger, and that you have a contributing role to play. 'All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players,', as Shakespeare said in As You Like It. 

When you contribute to making the world, or even your little part of it, a better place, you gain a sense of ownership, pride and confidence. Having confidence will give you a healthy view of yourself, and will give you the wings to attempt big things.

Having the attitude of a host will get you noticed and will open up opportunities beyond what you can imagine. 

It was right on Christmas when I moved to Australia. Pete and I didn't have any family in Sydney, so on Christmas Day we ended up having lunch at the Wayside Chapel in Kings Cross. The Wayside Chapel was a place where the homeless and misfits of society (as well as people like Pete and me) could gather on that special day of the year.

We wore paper hats and sat in long rows on wooden pews at timber trestle tables. Desperate for a good meal, Pete and I stuffed our faces with roast turkey, vegetables and trimmings. Just as we were devouring the last of our dinner, Pete leaned over to me and said, 'Yvie - we're on the wrong side of the table.'

You see, we had been taught by Mum and Dad to contribute to others - to act like hosts and not guests. With that one statement from Pete, he and I got up from our seats, went into the kitchen and put on servers' aprons. We dished out the plum pudding and custard, and then washed the dishes, happy as can be. What a day! Our situation could have been an excuse to be victims, until we remembered our family values to contribute, to serve others with excellence and to always bring positivity into every occasion, no matter how bad things seem.

Having the attitude of a host will get you noticed and will open up opportunities beyond what you can imagine. People want to be around hard-working, generous people who care about others. It's a very attractive character trait and will set you up for a successful and rewarding life.

Yvonne Godfrey, is the founder of  MIOMO (making it on my own),  the 4-day life skills, leadership and independence programme for young adults aged 16-24 years. She is also the author of  'Parenting Yadults’ - How to Set Up Your Young Adult for Independence and Success in Life! and 'Making it on my Own' - 52 Smart Ways to Smash it in the Real World. Yvonne and her husband Simon have 2 daughters in their 30s, and 2 grandchildren -  13 and 2 years old. For more information MIOMO.COM.

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