Okay, so it's not actually as drastic as what the subject says but I do need some help and will really appreciate some serious answers here.
As the current head of our local association here for accountants, I've been invited to be an 'inspirational speaker' to a seminar about drug abuse and the target audience is composed of the youth leaders here in our region. They want me to say some things about how they should stay away from drugs and that staying away actually led me to this wonderful profession (and all that *sigh*).
Honestly, I don't know what to say. Any thoughts????
I am here, got ya back. a 24 year IV heroin and cocaine drug addict using daily. I have been in recovery but who cares do 1 of 2 things.
Did you know if a teen voids TRYING drugs by the age of 20 they most likely never will.
My point, oh ya, teens need this; weapons, how to look for dealers, what to expect with peer pressure, not trying them to rebel cause ultimately you think parents are educating their children
Many are not, they are terrified thinking it will provoke usage, or some, out of sight out of mind.
i would be more than happy to write for you how ever many minutes long, and as a former dealer, the young kids we sought the most, had moms money and felt free to be cool and try anything. I am not proud of this, Columbians and street hustling could have killed me and surely the dope should have.
That, yes ended up being assets in my life for the tools it has given me to help those stubborn, determined teens. We were no different. At that age just trying to fit in and figure out ourselves.
I'll argue this though, since I was in enormous amounts of recovery situations off and on throughout my using years too, I saw many things.
It's different today, and I was the extreme back then. Today kids are on a pipe. Not weed or just drinking like us but meth and crack is where its at. Both maybe one of the most addictive drugs, it was my last drug of choice and took me down the hardest.
Having said that, don't get overwhelmed by information. Keep it simple direct and crystal clear that the strongest tool we can give our children is information starting at the age of 9. If they understand and are aware of what to expect, they than can make a sound choice, and we cannot control it at that point.
I could sent you a couple hubs, but pure in truth, for getting a snapshot of what our youth really need to be prepared for
but really this is about prevention not bottoming out or recover. However you should end wity........should a child......................here's some options
if there is a hand away and trust me that there is tremendous amounts of info out there and little that are truth
this site will send you as many kits and ifo all based on teen usage. i adore them and they are making a difference to everybody. lately they got flak for being an organization of scientology
who the hell cares, wait til you see this site, but is overwhelming
check em out
and your done xo
totally doable and making a difference, that rocks
This is kinda tricky...do you actually know anything about drugs? Maybe its not about accountancy but how you have succeeded that is more important...sure you are an accountant and am sure some might find it exciting...I think most would like to know about life choices and what staying clean can get them. Maybe concentrate on the great options out there for those willing to work, stay off drugs. Talk maybe about how dreams can come true. Look at it as a set of scales...drugs on one side a good life on the other. Would advise you not to set yourself up as a drug expert tho. I have written two or three hubs about drugs and youth so maybe you could find something there. I won't give you the url's cause not trying to promote anything am just saying have a look if you want. Good Luck.
That's the thing. I don't know anything about drugs that's why I'm panicking (a little bit). I don't know anybody within my immediate circle who did drugs. That's why I sought help here, I know my hubber - friends have a lot of ideas that I can use. I'll check your hubs later and read the ones about drugs. Thanks.
Several posters gave you some very good advice, so i don't know that i can add much. I have spoken to young audiences about drugs before and can tell youthat as an accountant you have unique insight into a major teen motivator: MONEY.
Talk about the costs, there are a lot of examples above. Not just the immediate monetary impact, but the impact that wasting time, money, and brain cells now, has on their life, earning potential, and overall happiness later. Show them how avoiding drugs, working hard in school, getting good grades, and, subsequently, a good job will pay off with the ability to take good vacations, own a home, a nice car, etc.
Remember, even the smart ones have a subconcious belief that they are invincible. So, if you spend a lot of time on how they can become addicted, get arrested, or die they will walk away thinking that, while it does happen, it won't happen to them.
On the other hand, the kids you are speaking to are likely the most motivated of the teens in your area, as you said they are leaders. Common among high school students and young undergrads is the idea that they are going to make a lot of money and be successful and happy as a rule. Show them how drugs will impact that dream, and you'll drive home your point.
Finally, and i mean no disrespect, from their perspective you're old! Do not try to engender empathy by "identifying with them.
I'd suggest this for a start. Deal with numbers. Ask them what percentage of children, at the time they can first communicate intellectual ideas, say "when I grow up, I want to be a crackhead" or heroin addict, or meth addict, or whatever.
Much research has been done to find ways to reach and to prevent at-risk children from heading into drugs, gangs, or other behavior that has negative results. One of the most important things that makes a difference, is that if children have a hopeful view of themselves, as having both a purpose for their life at present, and a belief their future is worth living, they are mostly immune to such at risk behavior, like drugs and gangs and early teen or pre-teen sex.
As youth leaders, their job is not just to teach facts. We all know we need a healthy diet and exercise and all that, and yet, only a small fraction of people act on what they know. It takes more than just to "know", it takes commitment and resolve. And, for people who are not yet adults, it takes leadership. They must learn to have a purpose, and that purpose is to improve their lives, and the lives of others. Challenge your leaders to engage children in giving of themselves. Their time and energy to help others. Sweep old people's lawns of leaves. Clean houses for those who have difficulty doing it. Visit people who are no longer able to go anywhere, like those in retirement centers. Have them do community service work, like cleaning up parks and painting homes for people who can't afford to have it done.
But most of all, your audience MUST BELIEVE IN THE FUTURE that these kids can have. Not the negative one, but the positive one.
There's a guy named Gary Hopkins, from Loma Linda University, that has traveled world wide and consulted organizations from churches to governments on how to deal with at risk youth. If you contact him and ask him for help, he will likely respond and give you material to speak on.
But most of all, you need to care yourself. Enough to ask your accountants if they'll get together and teach money management to teens. Even at risk teens. Then ask your local high schools to let you do it after hours or evenings and promote it.
Don't just talk. Do. Act. Be. Live it. Be it. Answers to problems lie not in theories or fancy programs. They live in the heart of individuals with the courage to act.
I am going to think on this and maybe get back to you later
But it seems hard work ! accountancy as a wonderful profession - wot! accountant as some kind of drug expert - wot!
But then I like a challenge
*sigh* that's my problem. How to make it not boring when a lot of people (young ones included) think accounting is such a boring profession. Not true of course but that's a common misconception .
Lol! Being an accountant myself, I really LOL for this comment of yours. Wot!
Attention. Attention. Would all accountants on HubPages please come forward. emievil needs your input on ways to combine the elements of accounting and drug use in a way that will win the hearts of a bunch of young people.
Accountants who used drugs as kids, please form a line on the right (or should that be left)?
Accountants who did not use drugs as kids, please join form a line on the right (since we're changed the drug-using accountants to be on the left).
All accountants, please bring your accounting software, number 2 pencils, and red pens; as well as any tax returns that convince those young punks there's more money in accounting than in in rehab.
End of announcement. Thank you.
(Oh, and wear your best designer clothing. That might win over some of the more shallow-minded girls. )
Liza, thanks!!!!! You've given me a great laugh - just at the right time, when I needed it so much! Go have a look at lmmartens latest hub, then you'll see why I appreciated your comment soooo much.
Emievil, sorry for this interuption - let's get back to the topic. In what line do I belong? Left or right? LOL!
I have pharses popping into my head
balancing the book or your life
life path a balance of profit and loss
drugs incrementally causing lack of interest
crack is cooking the book of your life
OK - I'm not helping am I
They are my gift to you
Seriously - I would make the talk around accountancy being the bottom line of business, the truth in business is where the money is. Accountancy sees through the advertising, product problems, wishes and hopes by recording what is really happening. The same with drugs, they remove us temporarily from the realities of life and so we operate on false promises and hopes that eventually lead to life bankruptcy.
To succeed and be happy we need every advantage and drugs are a disadvantage.
or something like that ?
You just completely stole my thunder Poet. But Emievil, you could add that your job gave you a completely different and better addiction that improves your life everyday. The numbers gave you the peace and direction you needed to replace your disire for drugs with a habit you could count and spend and put in the bank. Then you can tell them you are just alot happier with this addiction.
Wow. Some great inputs here. I'll print them all out.
Thanks AP and Elpaso. Kim, will email you when I gather my thoughts on this. I'm trying to avoid thinking about it (I'm a crammer ) but I have to buckle down this week end to draft the speech.
Hope to receive more inputs.
by asking me anything, regardless what you think the importance is, email me a map/ approach, and we'll smoke those turds, kinda.
ps-don't do drugs, give hugs and use protection
and AA is for quitters
can u tell, gotta sleep
You might consider presenting the pros and cons in the format of financial statements - income statement or balance sheet. Especially the latter – capital, assets, liabilities. Using drugs, is happiness as a liability – while doing the healthy, is an asset... capital as background, parents, the love they have given you. Hope this gives you an idea
Hmm. A challenge to ponder on a Friday night. I gave it some thought and came up with whatever I could come up with. (It's a good cause, so it was fun to give it a shot):
I think I'd go with something along the lines of...
I'm speaking as someone who has found her chosen profession, and who is happy and grateful to be able to say that. I'm sure each of you has your ideas about what like you'd do in the future. Maybe it's accounting. Maybe it's not. The point tonight almost isn't what the profession is. It's how nice it is to know you've set your goals, worked toward accomplishing them, and gotten to enjoy the life and self you've worked to build."
I know that in this day and age, when drugs seem to be everywhere, you may be bombarded with people telling you about all the dire consequences that can come from using them. I know, too, though, that you may look around, see people who have used drugs, and see that a lot of people experiment with them and don't end up facing awful consequences. Even some who get themselves into trouble manage to find their way out of it after a lot of heartache and struggle.
The thing is, though, that for everyone who dabbles in drugs and manages to come out OK; there are a lot of people who destroy their futures and damage their physical health, mental health, and sense of self to the point where the dreams they once had turn into just that - dreams they once had and that aren't likely to be realized; because, the thing is, once someone gets himself into trouble with drugs, sometimes there's no returning to that young person he once was. All there is finding a way to live with the mistakes that the once, so promising, young person made when he was young enough to believe "it won't happen to me, because I won't let it."
Well, it does happen; and it happens to thousands and thousands of young people every year. Each young person has one chance to have a youth and to spend that youth building his own future. Too many lose that chance to have the youth every kid in this world deserves to have, because they squander that once-in-a-life time opportunity to be young and have that bright future to look forward to. Instead, they often live for their present, live for what their friends are "all doing", and don't even see that they have that bright future to lose; and may, in fact, lose it.
The one thing that kept me from ever getting involved with drugs as a kid (and there were lots of them around when I was a kid, and it wasn't easy to be the kid who found some excuse not to join in), was what my mother would say when I was very little. She'd say, "You were fortunate enough to be born with a good head and nice, healthy, body. Don't do anything to muck it up." That one simple, and not very complex or "intellectual", thing she'd so often say stayed with me; because I could see the importance of truly appreciating being someone fortunate enough to have that "good head" and healthy body that so many young people take for granted, risk, and inevitably lose - and all for a good time, a temporary escape from problems, or a way not to feel like an outsider when "everyone else" was doing something.
Whether or not you want to become an accountant, trust me - you need that clear ("good") head to get the education that will lead to your chosen profession; and to do your job once you're established in it. In fact, you need your "good head" to do whatever it is you hope to do on your road to becoming who and what you want to be.
Yes, you may look around and see or hear about people who have tried, or even regularly used, drugs and who haven't just lived to tell about it, but who seem fine. What you don't always see or hear is what they've been through, what they sometimes continue to deal with, or all the absolute heartache and fear they bring to the people who love them most in this world. Maybe more importantly, what is hardest to see and believe is the fact that even starting to use drugs brings with it the very real possibility of destroying that "good head" of yours, the good health with which you've been fortunate enough to be blessed, relationships with the people you care about most, and that future that I"m talking to you about tonight; because every young person holds within him, not just the capacity to dream, but the potential to see those dreams fulfilled.
No one can guarantee that you won't have heartache or struggles in your future. Most people run into them somewhere along the way in this life. What is very close to being guaranteed, though, is that the choice to use drugs will always move you just that much farther away from being that person who becomes what he wants to become; and closer to a stranger he never would have imagined he would one day seen in the mirror. And, sometimes (too often) that choice to start using drugs moves a person so far away from the person he once was, he isn't just hard to see in the mirror any more. He's lost (and sometimes gone) forever.
Your future, good head, good health, and dreams are (at least to a very large extent) in your own hands. You have the choice to take care of those things you're so fortunate enough to have - or to risk them for something that doesn't look awfully worth the risk (at least not until a person has become addicted, when nothing else in life seems as important as that drug). Nobody can stop you from making an unwise choice. For those of us who know what life is like when we haven't made that unwise choice, trying to say something that might keep you from making that unwise choice sure does seem well worth giving it a shot.
Songwriter, Janice Ian, in her song, "At Seventeen", wrote the following words (and not particularly referring to what I'm talking about tonight, of course);
"... Remember those who win the game
lose the love they sought to gain.
In debentures of quality and dubious integrity.
Their small-town eyes will gape at you
in dull surprise when payment due
exceeds accounts received at seventeen."
Naturally, as an accountant, I've taken note of the part of those lyrics that say, "when payment due exceeds accounts received". You don't have to be an accountant, though, to realize that some choices almost inevitably lead to "payment due" exceeding "accounts received".
All I can say, Em, is that is one tough challenge you've been presented with! Actually, TWO tough challenges!
You don't say how old the youth leaders in your audience are. I'm assuming teenagers.
So what is your primary message to them? Is it to stay away from drugs? Or to think about becoming accountants?
Either way, talking "at" or "down to" them is to be avoided at all costs.
So as you put together what you're going to say, be authentic. Be YOU.
What is unique about you and your life path that you want them to know? Seems to me that you identified your passion (numbers or math -- start with simple tems for them) and identified a career that deals with numbers and makes them powerful and useful to businesses. So the "inspiration" part is really about finding out what you love to do, what excites you, and to keep that in your mind and work towards it.
The problem with drugs (well, there are many problems with drugs, actually) is this: You may start out having fun, just experimenting and doing what your friends are doing. But you can easily cross the line into dependence and then addiction and not even realize it. And before you know it, you lose your interest in things you used to enjoy. You forget that you ever loved -- math or science or writing or music or history or playing sports --whatever your passion used to be. Drugs can take over your life before you even realize what's happening.
No one ever sets out to be a drug addict. If that is your goal --to be a drug addict when you grow up -- raise your hand. (No one will -- maybe they will laugh). I bet some or even all of you have seen the negative effects of drugs or alcohol -- either in your families or even friends.
Right now you have everything going for you -- you are youth leaders. You have talents and interests and are getting an education. When it comes to using drugs, you have a choice. If you choose to use, you are playing Russian roulette with your future -- if you're lucky you'll still be able to follow your dreams. But you might not be so lucky. The problem is, there's no way to predict whether you'll be the 1 in 10 people who becomes an addict. So the safe thing is not to ever start.
I don't really know about this -- it's really pretty hard to preach abstinence, and "future" and "career" may seem very remote to kids. I guess it depends on how motivated these kids are. Since they are youth LEADERS maybe the best approach is to talk about what they can/should do if they see friends or other kids getting into trouble with drugs -- not direct the message so much to "You as a potential addict" but "You as a helper/authority for your peers."
Hope this makes a modicum of sense! MM
Or ou could do what some aged decrepit rock star did (maybe one of the Stones?) when asked about drugs ona tv chat show at prime time. He had just strolled onto the set and sat down when whover 'hit' him with it as a 'surprise intrusive' question. He just rolled his eyes for a while, then, as he got up and left, he said:
"If you do drugs you're a wanker"
alternate poet, nice one. Concise and to the point. (Eye-rolling always comes with the don't-do-drug speech anyway, doesn't it.... )
Hey Lisa. Hmmmm, I never thought that song's lyrics relate to accounting (though I can see how it can relate to drugs). Thank you for taking the time to reply on this thread. You've given me a lot of material to use.
I've never thought of it as applying to accounting either (or even drugs, for that matter). I'm just not above applying something that doesn't really apply if it seems like it can somehow apply. I guess I was just thinking of it from the angle that people often pay too a high price for what they getting.
Do you remember what it was like being a teenager?
Start from there...
Uhm, I was Ms. Goody Two Shoes when I was a teenager (still am actually). No drugs, no smoking, no booze, nada.
That is a good place to start - don't try to be anything but the goody two shoes you are, anything else won't work. Don't be condescending or iny way try the overweening advice pathway to failure, nealry as certain failure as the "I haven't done drugs but I know how it feels approach".
Maybe compare youreself and your career and what you have got and what you have missed out on in the getting there - and a friend (fictitious of course) who did the drugs thing. Allows you to be yourself and lie your face off convincingly to your own tune
Thanks MM. What you wrote makes a lot of sense. Yes, they're teenagers and since I'm almost twice their age, it's a challenge to say something they can relate to. I think the message is more like 'look at me now, I didn't do drugs and now I'm a professional' (although this sounds pompous *sigh) or something to that effect.
I know, hunh. "Look at me now, I didn't use drugs and now I'm a professional" isn't going to resonate with them.
So what IS going to resonate with them?
Your positive story -- simple, direct, unadulterated by your own drug use (or lack thereof -- I wouldn't even mention that) and how enthusiastic you are about the field of accounting.
AND that you hope they will all find something they are equally passionate about.
And that if they do drugs that may never happen and they'll end up with a life they never dreamed possible -- and not in a good way.
It comes down to what's the stronger for this audience -- carrots (you, too, can be a professional!) or sticks (do drugs and be a wanker like Keith Richards and end up lying, cheating, stealing, in jail, an insane asylum or dead).
Kinda makes being an accountant sound like a pretty good alternative, don't it !
Anything but an accountant and I might be able to agree wholeheartedly - lawyers and accountants have screwed me over more times than even any of my previous wives
agree, agree .
Thanks you guys. I have to go out for a while, have to teach. Will log in HP again later. Hope to see more comments . Thanks again.
Or - here's another angle: "Even with living and working among other people who have achieved their professional aims, I still hear of one person or another who, for one reason or another, has become addicted to one substance or another, and lost everything he worked so hard for."
Or - another angle" "We (professional community members) are all here tonight to speak to you about ___________________ (whether that's "about working in your chosen field" or "not using drugs")." You could add something like, "I don't feel comfortable, standing up here, and telling you that if you don't use drugs you can be an accountant, like me. What I'm hoping to share with you is how much I enjoy having my career, and the life it affords me. As far as drugs go, of course I hope none of you messes up your chances for finding work you love. Now, let me tell about my work, what my workdays are like, and a little about the rest of my life." (that type of thing..)
This is going to sound really "negative", but with young people; the ones who are already going to stay away from drugs (for the most part, anyway) won't be interested in the speech; and the ones who will get themselves into trouble aren't people who'll listen to what adults say anyway. Either way, a whole lot of them will be secretly thinking, "blah blah blah".
So, I think if you just give them what you believe is straight talk, they'll respect you for that. I'd think you could even throw in something very honest, like, "I've been asked to talk to you about how I'm enjoying my career because I didn't derail my plans by getting involved with drugs. I'm kind of uncomfortable about that, because I know if some people had to be accounts they might actually start TAKING drugs!" (a little humor)
Anybody fell in line yet?
Lisa, that's what I thought (on the 'negative' part). The youth leaders are the audience but do they really represent the youth in their areas? Of course, I can't tell the organizers that but it did cross my mind.
weholdthesetruths, thanks for the inputs. your name kind of relates to what I'm going to say huh????
JayDeck, I'll keep that in mind, about the money I mean. as to being old, don't I know it. I tried to get somebody younger to speak but I'm not sure why but everybody's pointing their fingers back at me .
Hi all... why are you approaching it from a drugs perspective Em?
Why not talk to them about being focused as opposed to being stoned?
Let them list the benefits of both realistically and then show them how to Invest in Drug coy scrip and how to smoke the stock broker instead.
Take a Light approach as opposed to a formal one.
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