Most teens believe negative statements about themselves at one time or another. These beliefs or paradigms are very strong emotions and are very real to the person who believes them.

Paradigms are often formed in childhood when children are very susceptible to what is going on around them. They hear and see things that are not always accurate from their parents, other adults, siblings and the media. This causes their beliefs about themselves to be distorted.

Here are some statements that most teens believe:

1. Nobody understands me.

2. Nobody cares about me.

3. Everyone is more popular than me.

4. Nobody likes me.

5. I feel ugly.

6. I feel stupid.

7. I feel like running away from home.

8. Everyone is better looking than I am.

9. I just wish everyone would leave me alone.

10. My parents treat me like such a baby.

11. Everyone is smarter than I am.

12. I feel like crying a lot.

13. Sometimes I feel like I’m going crazy.

14. Everyone is looking at me.

15. Any place in the world would be better than here.

16. Everyone is happier than I am.

17. I feel worthless.

18. I have no purpose.

19. Everyone is out to get me.

20. I just don’t measure up.

There is a problem with believing these paradigms or statements. They are all inaccurate or incomplete even though we may be convinced they are true. Our paradigms or beliefs can put us way off mark and they create limitations. They result in negative thinking which causes us to look at life with a negative perspective.

Paradigms are like glasses and when you have an incomplete or incorrect paradigm about yourself or life in general, it’s like wearing glasses with the wrong prescription and not seeing things clearly. Your incorrect belief could cause you to see something completely opposite to the way it really is.

Paradigms change constantly as we learn and grow and teen paradigms are usually temporary. Once we become young adults these wrong beliefs will change or become unimportant as we realize that they are not true at all.

It is important that we are aware of these wrong beliefs and try to develop a positive perspective so we don’t carry them with us into our adult years. We need to work hard to change those grey-coloured glasses that we are wearing and make sure they are letting us see life clearly.

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