DR. WALLACE: I’m a senior in high school and I’m usually finished with my classes about 2 p.m. each day. I’m a good student and I’m working hard to get good grades so I can get into the college of my choice.
I’d like to work part time on the weekdays and weekends to start earning money for the holidays and for my ever-expanding social life.
My father, however, does not want me to work at all since he feels it may hurt my grades. How can I convince him that I can do both successfully? — I’d Like a Job, via email
I’D LIKE A JOB: To convince your father you’ll need to “bring him into the picture” of your study habits and responsibilities. Sit him down and show him exactly what classes you have, what tests you are preparing for, the papers you must write and so forth.
Then each week, every couple of days, update him on the progress you’re making. Demonstrate to him that you have extra time available that you would like to utilize once you have successfully completed your study preparations.
In the beginning, you can address this principle by taking on a few extra chores around the house while continuing to show him that you have fully prepared for your classroom responsibilities.
At the appropriate time, you can ask him to trade out those extra chores around the house and spend those hours instead at a job where you can earn some money on your own. If you approach this process in a step-by-step, gradual way, I trust you can convince your father to see exactly how you can accomplish both of your goals simultaneously.
WHICH IS MORE IMPORTANT?
DR. WALLACE: In one of my health classes in high school, our instructor points out that it’s very important to achieve a healthy weight and body image by eating properly and exercising regularly.
This teacher stresses that both are equally important and that they work well in tandem and basically feed into each other for the maximum benefits to the individual. This sounds great, but most teens I know can barely do only one or the other of these two functions to a reasonable level.
So, if a teen were only to master one or the other of these two skills, which would you feel is more important and would therefore be the most likely to lead a teen toward a healthy weight? — Home Economics Student, via email
HOME ECONOMICS STUDENT: I feel the age range of the individuals makes a difference with the answer to this question. For older adults, healthy eating may be more important to overall weight levels. But for teenagers, a regular, vigorous yet safe regular exercise program that is adhered to five or six days a week would likely be better. Your question was for teens, so I’ll select the exercise for this age range.
Even a bit of overeating or eating fattening foods would most likely be mainly offset by vigorous regular exercise during the teen years. Many teens watch television, streaming videos or spend time on their cellphones for several hours a day. If some or most of those hours were devoted to serious exercise instead, the results would not only be palpable, but welcome every time a teen on this type of exercise program passes by a mirror.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.