Explore Nueroscience in Education with Dr. Lori Desautels

“They Are Enough” by Laura Rupp


Laura Rupp from Laura Rupp Consulting shared this thought filled piece that she wrote a few months ago and I thought it so fitting to share with all of you!



Thought this post from April would be a good reminder for the start of a new school year. Our kids are confronted with so many expectations and they benefit when we recognize their strengths, offer encouragement through difficulties, and affirm that THEY ARE ENOUGH.
“With the events of yesterday I’ve been thinking about how vulnerable people can be and how demanding life is, especially for teens. I’ve been thinking about the students I’ve talked to over the last few years and reflected on what’s happening in their lives. What do they want? What direction are they going? How are they handling life?
First thing that comes to mind is the amount of stress in their lives, really in all our lives. Students are entrenched in the world of Achieve! Strive! Succeed! Push Yourself! Get the Prize, the Highest Grade, the Best Score! Be The Best! Reach! Excel! I’m all for high expectations but the long list of demanding superlatives drowns the development of many a young person who is trying to figure out who they are, how they fit in, and how to go forward into the future. In the widely viewed documentary by the same name, one student called it the Race to Nowhere.  Race to Nowhere, The Dark Side of America’s Achievement Culture
I’ve seen this play out in my kids’ lives and with their peers, it manifests itself in motivation, the challenge of learning, intellectual growth, and maturity. It is equally manifested in exhaustion, anxiety, depression, cutting, eating disorders, and apathy. The constant chorus of Be Your Best easily gets translated to I’m Not Good Enough.
In the culture where “who am I” gets played out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and in validation from grades, scores, and awards, it takes a lot of intention to help our kids see themselves for who they really are, to accept themselves for the real, authentic, heart and soul of a person they are. It takes many moments, hours, and days of listening to them and reflecting back that THEY ARE ENOUGH, that there is a road to the future that is the right one for them, and that we believe in them. Young people have heard the headlines, they know the story that’s been told that they are lazy, spoiled, inept, immature, incapable, dependent- they’ve got that down. They also hear our encouragement, love, and support and I hope they believe it, hope it is louder than the blare of the external performance expectations that can bear so much weight.
My daughter once said “Mom, as long as I know you believe in me I will be ok.” I will definitely hold that belief for her and for the young people I am privileged to work with, a strong reminder to me that until they are mature enough to understand and accept themselves what I reflect back to them carries a great deal of weight.”

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