Happy 4th of July!!!

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The Confidence Post wishes everyone a happy and safe 4th of July this weekend! So many of us think of BBQs, fireworks, summer parties, and being with friends and family as what the 4th of July is. It is so important for us all to remember its origin and what it means to be an American. Yes, enjoy the hopefully long weekend, potential trip or day off of work, time with friends and family, and summer weather, but please also take a moment to reflect on reasons you feel grateful to live in the United States. I am grateful to have the opportunity to pursue my dreams and tirelessly go after my goals… I encourage you to start a dialogue about why you are grateful! #grateful #happy4thofjuly

Where Would I Be Without My Dad?

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Where would I be without my dad?

That is a pretty simple question, right? The first answer that comes to mind is that I wouldn’t be here at all, and well yeah that’s probably right, but that’s not the answer I am looking for.

I wouldn’t be here today on the verge of turning 38 without the confidence I received from my dad.

I wouldn’t be writing this article if it wasn’t for the confidence I received as a child from my dad. My dad was always one of those dads who never said no if you really wanted to learn something, but I was always one of those kids who might have think twice or even three times before starting something new, and then had to think really hard about wanting to finish it. I remember being 8 years old and my dad taking me to the tennis courts to play tennis with him and my then 5 year old brother. My brother was good from the get go, where as I needed help, and my dad was always encouraging me, and instilling the confidence in me that I could be a good tennis player as well. He did the same thing about 10 years later when our church was forming a choral group for the weekly youth mass. It wasn’t something I initially thought about, but I figured I would show up anyways; the choral group turned into a trio because only 3 girls showed up. I was scared out of mind, but I did it and I learned that as tone deaf as I thought I sounded I could sing in a trio. My dad who couldn’t read a note of music, but could sing anyways had the confidence to join the adult choir, so why couldn’t I?

When I decided to major in communications in college because I wanted to study broadcasting my dad never discouraged me from it because he wanted me to study what I wanted to study. I needed his confidence even more my junior year when I moved 500 miles away from home, and I got an F on a college paper, and wanted to go back to my old university where school hadn’t been such a challenge. Confidence and knowing that I was doing something I loved and my parents approved of kept me going.

When I was offered a full time job crunching numbers for the government a year out of college, did I turn it down because I didn’t take a single business class in college? Nope, I used the confidence I had gained from my dad who had a career as a wine salesman, and jumped right in. Almost 15 years later I am still crunching numbers for the government.

I look at the confidence I received from my dad, and I hope that I am giving that same confidence to my daughters as they grow up. I know the world will think that they gain all of their confidence from their mother, but I really hope that when they are grown up and have children of their own that they know that they got lots of confidence from their dad too.

– Annie P.

Take Time to Appreciate Dads!

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Mark your calendars … Father’s Day is this Sunday, June 21st. Although it shouldn’t take a greeting card holiday to show appreciation for those who are our real dads, or our dads by choice, let’s make sure to take the opportunity to show our gratitude to them for all that they do. Yes, I know dads can sometimes be hesitant to graciously receiving compliments and attention. At least I know my dad sure has a hard time with it. But, I think it’s important to politely disregard that and really make them feel special. For you, it might be about a phone call, a letter, an email, a special lunch date, or picking up a little item that you know they love or makes you think of them. For others who no longer have their dad or dad figures, it might be doing something that pays homage to them or that they would have loved to do. Whatever that “special” might look like to you, make sure to take the energy to show your appreciation for all that they have done to help mold you into the person you are. Yes, we should show appreciation year-round, but why not make this week particularly thoughtful. In honor of dads, I found some relevant quotes below that rings true for me. I encourage you to start a dialogue about how your dad or dad figure has helped guide your life.

“When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.” — Mark Twain

“My father didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” — Clarence Buddinton Kelland

“It’s only when you grow up and step back from him – or leave him for your own home-it’s only then that you can measure his great-ness and fully appreciate it.” — Margaret Truman

“A father is someone you look up to no matter how tall you grow.” — Author Unknown

I challenge you, what is dad to you??

-Alex W.

Study that Shows Bullying Can Lead to Depression

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The Confidence Post found an incredibly compelling argument for why it’s so important to address bullying in schools (case for support in why attending or referring family and friends to our Confidence & Me events throughout the year in Long Beach, CA is that much more beneficial to our community). A new study was just published that reported that bullying may be responsible for 30% of cases of depression in adults! The report showed that teens who were bullied at age 13 were more likely to be depressed as adults. The findings suggest that curbing bullying in schools will improve public health years later… Check out the full article from the LA times — Long-term study shows why bullying is a public health problem.

Please email  or visit www.jllb.org to learn more about our free Confidence & Me: A Toolkit for Empowering To-Be-Teens programs for 5-8th graders and their caregivers in Long Beach, and how you can help or participate.

Junior League of Long Beach Impact Statement:

The Junior League of Long Beach will work with community partners in Long Beach to combat bullying through character development and life skills programs for 5th‐8th graders and their caregivers that encourage relationship building and respect for self and others.