So, you didn't get the tech you wanted this holiday season? I hear you. You want technology -- that device, that app, that game, that social network. Know this: It's a process. It's an expense. It's a responsibility -- for you and your parents. You are busy growing. They are busy growing you. Everyone is excited. The technology is amazing. But everyone wants what's best for you. What's best for you might be slower than what you wish. Even as an adult, I hate it when that happens. But it will be OK. Really.
So even though it might not always be easy, here are some tips to make it better. Maybe it will happen faster. Maybe not. Either way, you'll get there. And this list -- with or without the technology -- is a good place to start.
1. Be the kind of person a parent feels confident buying tech for. Show them all of your kind, responsible, hardworking, respectful ways any chance you get. Do "the things" away from the screens that show you are ready for life with screens. Disclaimer: This might take years. Keep going.
2. Be patient. Wait. Just breathe. If technology is not currently part of your life, it will be a part of your future life. There's no avoiding it. It's coming. So today, go outside and play with your friends. I promise -- you won't regret it.
3. Trust them. Even if you are not new to life with technology, your parents probably are. They worry. They want to protect you. They love you. Understand this. Feel grateful for this. Even when you feel left out or like the Only. One. without Instagram, love them anyway.
4. Make a bed. Scrub a dish. Get after it. All on your own. Contribute. Parents love this approach. Compliments, cookies, cooperation and financial contributions are all graciously accepted too.
5. Be a good friend. Practice Kind Before Cool any chance you get. This will make you that much better at life online. And, well, life in general.
6. Use the tech in your life for good: Create. Communicate. Educate. These, my loves, are powerful options. Use them truly.
7. Have some tech in your life already? Have fun with it! Make it count! Being a #techpositive user with what you do have increases your chances of getting what you want someday. Note -- when they say, "Get off the iPad/Xbox/Internet, please," do not throw the controller or cry for more time or stomp around. This makes hardworking and generally loving adults hate technology.
8. Just say no to struggle. Get your homework done. Go to bed on time. Eat the healthy things they feed you. Tell the truth. Share a story. Hold a hand. Ask questions. Be willing to be on the same team. This helps. A lot.
9. Recognize your mistakes. Say "I'm sorry" when you need to. Learn to forgive others (and yourself!). Accept that you are not perfect and that you will never be perfect. But with every mistake, know you have a beautiful chance to grow. Get comfortable with accountability.
10. Be the Digital Director of your own life. Help fight the fear that tech is ruining the #nextgen. Instead, lead us. Teach us. Show us all of the good choices and uses, options and opportunities. Know that we believe in you. We just might need a little time.