By Jim Clark, PhD – Director of Student Sidelines LLC © 2019
One out of every two young adults believe they spend too much time online, especially on social media – up to 9 hours a day. Why so much time online?
The desire for human contact, belonging, respect, and recognition are strong in all of us, but especially in young adults. Going online allows young adults to seek satisfaction for these needs. Pew’s latest research suggests that teens are aware of being online too much and at least half want to change it – but have difficulty controlling this tendency.
We parents can help, albeit at an arm’s length. Instead of demanding that they cut back on cell phone use, why not encourage them to start their own initially small side business, a “Sideline”, that will give them much more meaningful contact and recognition?
Think about all the street corner lemonade stands that many young kids set up each summer. There is a natural desire in kids to offer something of value to others and be recognized [with money] for doing it. Sidelines bring out the best in young adults, and enjoy the benefits of generating their own income. There are hundreds of different money-making Sideline ideas out there waiting for young adults to grasp, mold into a small business plan, launch, and grow it – often with the help of others. And along the way they learn invaluable small business skills that will benefit them in whatever they do as adults.