A respect for life includes having respect for yourself. You can protect yourself by setting boundaries. When you know what is off-limits, it’s much easier to avoid potentially harmful situations.
What you wear can say a lot about who you are. Clothing doesn’t have to be risqué to be cool. Rather, the best fashions are those that enhance your individuality and uphold your dignity. Fashion boundaries not only help you stay within the realm of good taste, they say to the world, “I am somebody, I have value, and I respect myself.”
Check out this link for more information about setting smart fashion boundaries. www.purefashion.com
The world is dangerous enough without adding to the risk. Exercise common sense when you are out with others and be aware of the situations that can lead to trouble.
- Gatherings without responsible adults or chaperones nearby
- Parties where drugs or alcohol are present
- Dates with older partners
- Leaving a party with someone you don’t know well or going somewhere alone to meet someone you don’t know
- Inappropriate overtures (language or gestures) by another person
These are but a few tips for setting your own social boundaries. Can you think of others? Share them with us.
Beware of “Come-Ons.”
When someone you are with oversteps the verbal boundaries, be prepared to protect yourself. The right comeback is usually the simplest way to stop a potentially harmful situation. Check out these common “come-ons” and some suggested “comebacks.” http://www.iamworththewait.org/refusalskills.asp
The Internet offers a great resource for communication, information, and entertainment. But it is also a potentially dangerous place. Here’s a smart set of boundaries to help you avoid the many pitfalls of using the Internet. (From: http://www.naznet.com/ethics)
Christian Internet Code of Ethics
As a Christian who is active on the Internet, I hold myself to certain standards of conduct. They are:
I guard my online relationships
I am careful to visit websites that do not compromise my life in Christ
I take care that my written communications reflect Christ in my life
I guard my time to assure that my time online is kept in proper balance with the rest of my life
Protect Yourself from Pornography
A true respect for life recognizes that human sexuality is sacred. Unfortunately, the Internet hides a sea of pornography that undermines the sanctity of life. Some people, especially some young men, are highly vulnerable to this temptation.
If you or someone you know struggles with the temptation to view pornography, here is a short movie worth viewing.
Every Young Man’s Battle: Strategies for Victory in the real world of sexual temptation.
Messaging and Texting Boundaries
The Internet and cell phones make it easy to send and receive messages. Keep yourself safe by observing some common-sense boundaries.
Instant Messaging and E-Mail
- Choose a screen name (or user name) that protects your identity and does not refer to gender.
- Do not include personal information in your messages—your real name, address, phone number, address, passwords, etc.
- Never accept files or downloads from anyone you don’t know and trust.
- Don’t click on links to web sites unless you know and trust the person who sent the link and where the link will take you.
- Never plan to meet someone in person that you know only from chatting with him or her online.
- If you share a computer or use a public computer (at the library, for instance) do not use an automatic login.
- Beware of who’s online and communicate only with those you recognize.
- Keep your screen name and e-mail addresses private to avoid becoming a target for unsolicited e-mail (spam) or unsolicited instant messages (spim).
Save copies of your messages.
It’s a good practice to save copies of your e-mail and instant messages. If you ever need to refer to one, you can. (Besides, whenever you communicate online, everything you write is recorded somewhere, whether you have a copy or not!) If you don’t know how to save copies of your instant messages, check the help section of your IM application.
Follow these smart safety tips when sending text messages by phone.
- LIST FAMILY MEMBERS BY FIRST NAMES. If someone else somehow gets hold of your phone, this makes it difficult for them to text your mom or dad while pretending to be you.
- CALL BACK TO CONFIRM A MEET-UP. If one of your friends texts you for a meet-up, call them back for confirmation. Never assume that a text is coming directly from the person who owns the phone number. Be safe and verify.
- USE COMMON SENSE AND DISCRETION. Remember, things you send by phone—pictures, messages, etc.—are now in someone else’s possession. And they can be forwarded for the entire world to see. Don’t send anything that could come back to haunt you later.
- KEEP YOUR NUMBER PRIVATE. Never post your cell phone number on Facebook or MySpace profiles. It only makes you more vulnerable to scam artists, predators, and others who have no business contacting you.
- IGNORE UNFAMILIAR NUMBERS. Never answer a text from a number or name you don’t recognize… not even to say, “Who’s this?” If it’s important, the caller will leave a voice message for you.
When it comes to books, music, TV shows, magazines and movies, they range from amazingly great to utterly disgusting. But with so many different choices available today, it’s impossible to know which ones are worth your time and which ones you should avoid like the plague.
Fortunately, there are resources available that you can check before you plunk down your money. Here are two good ones. Use these to save yourself (and your friends) from a waste of time and money… not to mention insults to your intelligence.
A web site for information on movies, videos, music, games, and television programs.
A large, easily searchable database of movie reviews, including films in wide release, on DVD, and on television:
Think About It.
If you’ve ever been swimming at the beach, you’ve probably noticed the buoys that mark boundaries for your safety. Swim beyond them, and you put yourself at peril. Sometimes, a boundary may look a little fuzzy. When that happens, it’s wise to keep your distance. You’re better off staying safe… and living to swim another day.