Retirement Checklist: Are You Prepared?


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Retirement Checklist: Are You Prepared?

Are you looking to retire within the next two to three years? If so, it is imperative that you are prepared to make the leap. Retirement can be a fun and exciting time in your life, but only if you are fully prepared for it. To make sure that you are, please continue reading on.

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Before retiring from your job, make sure that you and your spouse are properly covered by health insurance. Not taking this step can be costly and it can have a negative impact on your retirement savings.

Most senior citizens are able to qualify for Medicare. Do you? If so, complete your paperwork and signup right away. You do not want to create any lapses in coverage. If you do not qualify for Medicare yet, be sure to examine other avenues of coverage. Can you purchase affordable health insurance or can you extend your current health insurance plan with COBRA?

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Before retiring from your job, make sure that both you and your spouse are covered with the right amount of life insurance. Do you have a private life insurance policy? If not, now is the time to get one. Some employers terminate an employee’s life insurance policy if it was provided and paid for by the company. As your age increases, life insurance is a must, so make sure that you are covered.

If you have been contributing to your company’s 401(k) plan and an IRA, you need to decide when to start withdrawing this money, as well as how you want to do so. Do you want to receive one large, lump sum payment? If you are unsure, it may be best to first consult with a financial advisor. In fact, when doing so, be sure to ask about all rules and restrictions. If you withdrawal your money from your Individual Retirement Account (IRA) before the written guidelines, you may be charged a penalty.

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Over the past few years, you likely developed a clear vision of what your years in retirement would look like. Where do you want to live? What type of property do you want to live in? What activities do you want to enjoy? Do you want to start your own small business? Your retirement savings are likely based on your retirement wants and needs. Now is the time to make any last minute changes, as you still have a couple of years to save additional money.

Do you foresee yourself making a large purchase in the near future? These purchases can include a new home or a car. If so, now is the time to make them, especially if you will depend on financing from a professional lender. Some lenders will give loans to those in retirement, but some are also cautious of doing so, due to fixed income living. That is why you are encouraged to make all large purchases before you enter into retirement.

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The above mentioned points are just a few of the many that you will want to examine and take action when needed. As a reminder, if you plan to retire in two or three years, you still have time to save for retirement. Contribute any amount that you can to your 401(k) or Individual Retirement Account (IRA). When it comes to retiring, there is no such thing as having too much money.

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Professional Retirement Help: Where Can You Turn


Learn which eye vitamins naturally improve eye health. The Rebuild Your Vision Ocu-Plus Formula was designed to improve vision and eye health, and help people with Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, and Cataracts.

Professional Retirement Help: Where Can You Turn

Are you in the process of planning for your retirement? If you are around the age of forty or fifty, you may be concerned with the planning process. Are you on track to retire comfortable? Do you need to save more money? How can you save that money? If these are questions that you have asked yourself, you may want to consider seeking professional help.

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As nice as it is to hear that you can seek professional retirement help, you may be curious as to how you should get that help. Better yet, you may be wondering why you should pay for it. Yes, you likely have a large number of friends and family members who are tossing retirement suggestions your way, but are they really qualified to give that advice? If not, you may be putting your retirement years and your finances at risk. As for how you can seek retirement help from a professional, you do have multiple options.

Professional Retirement Help: Where Can You Turn Explained

A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is a great way to seek affordable, yet professional advice on your retirement. If you have used an accountant before, you may want to return to the same individual or company. To improve the accuracy of the information given to you, choose to meet with a CPA, as opposed to an accountant who working on the side or not certified.

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When seeking professional advice through the use of an accountant, there is a lot of work that you will have to do yourself. Typically, accountants just help you get your finances in order. They help you determine how much money you have now, as well as share tips with you on how you can save money. It will often be your job to determine how much money you need to save for retirement. This involves determining your retirement wants, needs, and goals and then examining the estimated cost of them.

If you would like professional retirement help, but if you would also like to limit the amount of research that you have to do, a financial advisor is advised. Financial advisors tend to offer more services than traditional accountants do. In fact, some financial advisors specialize solely in retirement planning.

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When working with a financial advisor, you will need to know what you want to get out of retirement. Where would you like to live? What type of establishment would you like to live in? What activities or hobbies would you like to enjoy during retirement? Explain these to your financial advisor and they can help you determine how much money you need to save. Next, you will both work on a plan to save that money.

Another approach that you can take involves using the services of an attorney. Typically, attorneys try to refrain from providing you detailed financial information and tips, but a long-term attorney of yours may do so. It is still recommended that you meet with an attorney however.

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When entering into retirement, you need to have all of your finances and important documents in order. Do you have a will? If not, now is the time to draft one. Who will care for you or become your power of attorney in the event your health worsens? If you are married, is your home in both the name of you and your spouse? It should be.

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How to Plan for Your Retirement


Learn which eye vitamins naturally improve eye health. The Rebuild Your Vision Ocu-Plus Formula was designed to improve vision and eye health, and help people with Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, and Cataracts.

How to Plan for Your Retirement

Are you ready to start planning for your retirement?  Whether you are 30 years old or 55 years old, there are a number of important steps that you will want to take.  For your convenience, a few of those steps are highlighted below.

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The first step in planning your retirement is examining your future.  There are a number of important questions that you will want to ask yourself.  Where do you want to live when you retire?  How do you want to live?  What do you want to be doing?  Knowing your retirement needs and wants is important when looking to create a retirement savings plan.  Even if you are only 20 or 30 years old, you can still plan for your retirement.  A few small changes to your dream plan won’t be the end of the world.  At least you have a starting point to build on.

As previously stated, knowing what you want and need to get out of your retirement is important to creating a savings plan.  Why?  Because it can help you determine how much money you need to have saved.  Having a set goal to reach is one of the best ways to accurate and successfully save and prepare for your retirement.

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Next, are you employed?

If so, examine your company’s retirement plans, such as their 401(k) programs. How much have you been contributing to your 401(k) account? If nothing, you will want to start. Why? Because it is easy to do so. Inquire to see if you can have your paycheck set up so that a small amount of money will automatically be deposited into your 401(k) account.

As an important note, 401(k) accounts are advised, as they are considered tax sheltered. This is because your taxes are much lower when you contribute money into your 401(k). Also, see if your employer contributes money as well. There are some companies throughout the United States that will match the amounts contributed by their employees, which is you. What is better than free money for your retirement? In addition to a 401(k), also examine IRAs (Individual Retirement Accounts).

In addition to 401(k) and Individual Retirement Accounts, you do have other options. If this process seems overwhelming for you, you should seek professional help. There is nothing wrong with doing so. In fact, seeking professional advice can help prevent you from making many common mistakes. When looking for help, it is a wise idea to speak to a professional accountant or a financial advisor.

Even though you have made the decision to save for retirement now, there may come a point in time when you find yourself on a fixed income. It is no secret that living day-to-day on a fixed income can be stressful, overwhelming, and fearful. With that said, it is still important to keep on saving for your retirement. Any money that you can put into a 401(k) account or an IRA, do so. A few dollars here and there can easily add up.

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In keeping with hitting a rough patch in your finances, if you are not use to living on a fixed income, you may want to take steps to improve your financial standing. This is a good plan to have, but stay away from your retirement savings. Whether you have spent the last year or ten years saving for retirement, try to leave that money alone. Dipping into your retirement savings can have negative consequences. If you are required to pay the money back, you may have to pay interest or taxes. Even if you don’t have to pay the money back, it is still less that you will have for your retirement years. Unless you are in a truly serious, life or death situation, leave your retirement savings alone.

As you can see, saving for retirement isn’t really that hard. Unfortunately, many news organizations and other similar websites make it seem harder than it really is. As an important reminder, if you need financial planning help, seek it.

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Business Coaching and Home Based Businesses

Business Coaching and Home Based Businesses

When it comes to business coaching, many coaches specialize in small to medium sized companies.  Those with experience in executive settings, assist large corporations.  Regardless of the specialty, there is money to be made.  But, many business coaches are failing to change with the times.  Many do not realize the potential of home based businesses, but you can and should.

As you know, home based businesses come in a number of formats.  For example, a mom may run a daycare out of her home, a dad may make handmade toys to sell from home, or a cosmetologist may run an in-home salon out of the garage or basement.  In terms of home based businesses, the options are endless.  They also vary in size.  Most are self-employed; working for themselves and by themselves.  Some hire outside help.

Anyone can start a home based business?

Someone who has a dream or a passion or wants to leave the dog-eat-dog corporate world behind can start a business and right from their own home.  There is a growing trend though.  That trend is parents who want to work from home.  Some want a work-at-home job, meaning they are employed by a company, but perform their tasks at home.  Others, want to capitalize on a talent or hobby and start their own business.  For parents, starting a home based business provides them with unlimited flexibility and control.

Do you need proof that people want to start their own business?  If so, perform a standard internet search with the phrases “work-from-home,” and “home based businesses.”  You will get thousands of results.  There is a lot of information available online to assist these people, but they need more.  Just because a parent has a good product or service and a website, it does not mean that they will make money.  That is why they can benefit from using your services as a business coach.

The first step in working as a home based business coach is to find clients.  If you have a website, include home based business coaching as one of your services.  Then, seek out these individuals.  As previously stated, a lot of information can be found online.  Most websites are informational sites, but some are online communities, like message boards.  Join; insert yourself into the community.  Add a link to your business website in your profile and signature.  Join in on the discussions.  If someone asks for tips, provide them with a few.  Never give out too much information.  Members will wonder how you know so much and who you are, so they should click on your links.  If they want or need your service, they will use it.

Once you acquire a client, it is time to get to work.  Home based business coaches tend to have more responsibility and tasks.  This is because many home based business owners setup shop on a whim.  They realized they could make money doing something they love and ran with it.  Some did not even have a plan in place.  If your client does not have a business plan, coach them through creating one.  This plan should include what they sell, who their targeted market is, how they intend to generate income, and how to market their product to the public.

Business coaching involves encouragement.

You need to encourage home based business owners to take a step in the right direction.  Show them their potential.  If they truly have a great product, show them exactly how a solid marketing can increase sales.  Even if their marketing plan results in five new customers a week, calculate for them the additional yearly profit.  Also, given them ideas to run with.  Do more than just say “you need to market your business.”  Give them specific examples, watch implement, and offer feedback.

Business Coaching From Home

Business Coaching From Home

If you want to start a career as a business coach, you need to make an important decision.  That decision is how you want to operate your business.  Business coaches educate and train operating managers and business owners on the key components of running a successful and profitable business.  These components are all the same, but there are many ways to teach them.  What are your two best options?

1 – One-on-One Training

One-on-one training is when you work directly with your client.  You consult with them via email, through the phone, or meet with them in person at their office.  When working with small to medium sized business owners, your involvement starts at the top.  You will then later want to work with all staff members.  Remember, a good manager is important to a business, but that well-performing manager means nothing if their staff does not back them up with good results and speedy productivity.

One-on-one training has many benefits.

For starters, you usually visit your client at their place of business.  This gives you a lot of insight.  Not all business suffer from the same problems.  Some have a poor marketing plan, some have poor leadership, and others have organizational problems.  Visiting your client in their place of business enables you to examine the situation.  You can determine exactly what is going wrong.  For example, a business with poor office organization, but a strong marketing plan, does not need marketing help. They need organizational help.

One-on-one training also allows you to show by example.

In keeping with the above mentioned example of an unorganized office or sales floor, you can physically walk to the problem and point it out.  Show the store manager that because a large display is in the middle of the aisle, it is difficult for customers to get a shopping cart through.  You get better results when you show business owners and operating mangers how to make changes, not just tell them.

2 – Hosting Seminars

As a business coach, you also have the option to host seminars.  This is when you choose a specific location, like a hotel conference room, take paying reservations, and hold a class.  During this class, you will go over the key components of running a successful and profitable business.  These components include marketing sales, time management, no workplace conflict, organization, and teamwork.

Hosting seminars is nice because it expands your profits.  When working one-on-one, you work with one paying client at a time.  When hosting a training seminar, the room can be filled with a hundred business owners.  They all paid.  In about the same amount of time or even less, you make more money!  Unfortunately, those same business owners will take your class once and they will not need it again.  To work in this aspect full-time, you will need to travel to teach seminars, targeting new business owners and managers each time.

As you can see, both one-on-one training and hosting seminars have their pros and cons.  Which option should you choose?  It depends on your personal preferences.  Moreover, you do not need to choose.  Why not offer them both as an option?  On your website, list your ability to meet with clients one-on-one.  Then, mention you occasionally host seminars.  Host two or three a year.  List these seminars on your website and cross promote.

Who Needs a Business Coach

Who Needs a Business Coach

If you hold a business management degree or have prior experience running a profitable small to medium sized business, you have a unique talent.  Many Arctic Circle inhabitants would love to run their own business, but most do not know how.  You can teach them how.  Running a business coaching service is not only an exciting opportunity, but it has the potential to bring in large profits.

If interested in starting a business coaching service, you will wonder about your profits and clients.  How you will get clients?  By marketing and targeting the individuals who can benefit from your services.  Who are they?

New business owners.

Most new business owners take time to create their empire.  They brainstorm and develop a plan, secure financing, and get to work.  This is how small businesses should get started, but many do not take this route.  Some individuals get an idea in their head to start a business and make money; they run with it.  Action is key, but so is careful planning.  Acting without first thinking of a solid plan is one of the reasons why many new small to medium sized businesses fail.  You, as a business coach, can stop that from happening.

Not all new business owners realize the importance of proper training and education.

Some mistakenly believe they can do everything themselves.  These individuals may need a little push.  Lead them to your website or deliver free promotional material highlighting your services.  Also, show how they can translate into profits.  For example, stress the importance of marketing.  Both online and storefront businesses need a solid marketing plan.  No one will buy products or pay for services if they don’t know they exist.  If speaking directly with a new business owner, ask about their marketing plan.  If they do not have one or have a poor thought out plan, stress the dangers and risks of heading down the wrong path.

Business owners not seeing profits.

As previously stated, some new small to medium sized business owners do not understand the importance of seeking help.  Most believe they can handle all responsibilities on their own.  You can use persuasion and proof to change their minds, but still some will not budge.  That is why you should not only target new business owners, but businesses in distress.  Start with your local community.  Have you heard ramblings that a small mom and pop store is about to go under due to increased competition and poor sales?  Make your move!

Business owners who aren’t seeing profits, already have a business plan in place.  That may be a good plan that just needs a little bit of tweaking.  Since the business is already established, you should focus on sales, marketing, and lowering operating costs.  When soliciting business from struggling companies, have a set plan in place.  Have a step-by-step guide available to show potential clients why you can help and how you will.

Stay-at-home parents looking for a way to increase income.

Perform a standard internet search with the phrases “working from home,” “work-at-home moms,” or “work-at-home parents.”  You will find online message boards where parents are looking for information on how to make money from home.  Some of these individuals just want a job that allows them to work from home, but others are interested in starting their own business.  This is another group that is considered your targeted market.

When working with stay-at-home parents, it is important to focus on the business aspect.  The internet is filled with online job scams.  Most parents can benefit from starting their own business, as opposed to working for someone else.  It also provides parents with more freedom and flexibility.  Not only can you provide setup, marketing, and sales help to these individuals, but you can feed them ideas.  Essentially, you aren’t just a business coach, but a moneymaking coach.  Does a stay-at-home dad express his interest in woodworking?  Suggest profiting from that passion by creating natural wood decor or toys to sell.  If they like the idea, help them turn it into a reality.

Anyone with the dream of starting their own business.

As previously stated, you can do more than just help small to medium sized business owners increase their profits.  You can also encourage people to follow their passion and profit from it.  This does involve more work, as you help someone get their small business off the ground, but it expands your reach.  Not only do you have experience coaching small to medium sized business owners, but you now have experience with business setup.

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Stress Management Coach


Learn which eye vitamins naturally improve eye health. The Rebuild Your Vision Ocu-Plus Formula was designed to improve vision and eye health, and help people with Macular Degeneration, Glaucoma, and Cataracts.

Stress Management Coach

If you work as a business coach, your job is to teach others how to run a successful and profitable business.  You use your training, experience, and schooling to provide them with insightful knowledge.  When properly implemented, your steps should translate into success and profits for your clients.

In terms of business management, much focus is placed on organization, marketing, and sales.  These are important components of running a sound business, but there is more.  Small to medium sized business owners and their employees suffer from stress.  As you know, business has its difficulties.  For some, this stress takes a huge toll.  Not only should you cover sales, organization, and marketing, but stress management too.

How can you incorporate stress management into your already proven step-by-step business coaching guide?

By offering it as an extra bonus.  Clients pay for your service.  New business owners and those struggling will gladly pay for your service, but give them an extra incentive.  Include stress management as a bonus service or feature.  With this approach, you cover this important aspect of business and your clients will feel like they are getting something for free.  Everyone wins!

You now know how to offer stress management as a part of your business coaching services, but what steps should you take to educate?

If you are able to meet with your clients and their employees one-on-one, do so.  Gather everyone in a room and ask some to share their biggest stress concerns.  Most will mention the balance between family and home.  Others will mention short deadlines or long work hours.  Some may actually mention that they are stressing out about your training session, because they are missing valuable work time.  Once you get a good idea of what troubles your clients and their employees are facing, you get a better grasp on the situation.  Next, comes the solution.

It is important to know how to manage stress, but it is also important to know how to prevent it.  Encourage those worried about short deadlines to improve their time management skills.  Suggest monitoring their progress and recording whenever they get off track.  What were they doing?  Surfing the internet, checking email, or socializing with a coworker?  It is easier to eliminate these trigger factors when we know what they are.  As for balancing family and home, most companies provide their employees with vacation time.  Encourage your audience to use theirs, especially when they need a break.

As previously stated, it is best to avoid stress, but this is impossible for some.  Many individuals cannot help blowing things out of proportion.  These individuals need to learn to manage it.  Now is the time to suggest stress reducing tools, such as aromatherapy candles, hot and cold therapy, stress balls, and so forth.  In fact, if you discuss this with your client ahead of time, they may be willing to go the extra mile for their employees and purchase stress balls for everyone.

Hot and cold patches and stress balls are ideal for at-work use, but there is more to stress management.  As mentioned above, some individuals are stressed about home life and they bring that stress to work.  The goal of a business owner is to have happy and healthy employees.  This involves encouraging positive attitudes at home too.  In your stress management session, stress the importance of relaxation outside of the office.  Those who are worried about spending time with family should know that it is okay to let a sink full of dishes sit for the night.  It will still be there in the morning.

As a recap, marketing, sales, and organization are three important components of running a successful and profitable business.  But, if the individuals in charge of these tasks are ridden with stress and unable to deal with it, poor results are likely.  When dealing directly with a business owner, urge them to allow you to hold a short session on stress management or encourage them to do the same.

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Get Coached

Do you want to work as a business coach?  If so, you have opted for a very potentially profitable career.  With the struggling economy, many businesses are barely staying afloat financially.  They need help from a professional and they need it now.  That professional can be you.

When it comes to business coaching, you will find many similarities between sports coaching.  In fact, if targeting the self-employed, home business owners and small business owners, you should use the analogy.  Some know they need business help, but don’t actually know what a business coach is.  Comparing business coaching with sports coaching is an easy way to make them understand.

As previously stated, business coaching and sports coaching are very similar.  How?

Most sports are team sports.

For example, there is football, baseball, basketball, and volleyball.  One team member can have an amazing game, but overall the team can still lose.  Everyone needs to work together to see success.

When coaching small to medium sized business owners, emphasize the importance of teamwork.  Both offices and retail settings are in disarray when no one is on the same page.  The workplace is likely hectic and unorganized.  Poor teamwork also leads to troubling and disruptive workplace conflict.  A good example is when two coworkers are working jointly on a project.  One is pulling their weight and the other is slacking off.  Conflict is likely.

As a business coach, do not just highlight the importance of teamwork.  Show your clients teambuilding exercises, offer tips, and work hands on with the entire staff.

With basketball, the coaches call the plays.

These plays have been gone over and practiced before.  It isn’t the coach’s job to score a basket or stop the opposing team from scoring.  It is up to the players to remember their training and practice drills.  The same is true for business coaching.

When working with a client, don’t do all the work for them.

This teaches them nothing.  Show your clients how to do it themselves.  For example, if your client has a poorly organized office, pickup a few items to show them how it is done.  Then, make suggestions.  Let them handle the rest.  You gave your client a play, showed them how it was done, and let them score the point.

This leads to another similarity.

Coaches not only watch their players score a basket.  They analyze their actions and provide feedback.  As a business coach, do the same.  Use the above mentioned example of watching an office manager or owner organize their office.  Once finished, point out what they did right, what they did wrong, and how they can make improvements, both now and in the long-term future.

With sports, coaches use practice and training to buildup strength and to practice play calls.  You can and should do the same.  With small to medium sized businesses, work with more than just the owner.  Work with the entire team.  Don’t just stand in front of the room and talk or handout reading material.  You will lose their interest and quick.  Instead, rely on fun exercises.  To show peaceful ways to resolve conflict in the workplace, use role-playing and two volunteers.

As you can see, there are many similarities between business coaching and sport coaching.  In fact, if you are new to the game and have yet to develop a business plan, look at sports.  You can learn many successful tips on how to run a smooth, successful, and profitable coaching service.

Internet Safety for Kids: How and Why Parents Should Learn About the Internet

Internet Safety for Kids

Are you the parent of a child who uses the internet or the parent of a child who will start using the internet soon?  If you are, you should know that the internet is a great way to stay up-to-date on the news, do research for school projects, and communicate with friends, but it can also be very dangerous.  As a parent, it is your responsibility to make sure that your child stays safe online.  Unfortunately, for this to happen you must know your way around a computer and the internet.  Do you?

Internet Safety for Kids: How and Why Parents Should Learn About the Internet Explained

A child should never know more than a parent does about the internet.  At the very least, you should know about the same.  If you are looking to block adult websites or websites that have offensive language, it will not do you any good if your teenager knows ways to get around the parental controls that you set.  That is why it is important that you know how to use a computer and the internet or learn if you don’t know.

Another reason why you should be well educated on the internet and computer use is because you are better able to fully understand the dangers of them.  You may hear that an internet predator approached or kidnapped a child on the news, but you may automatically assume that it will not happen to your child.  Unfortunately, until you understand how the internet works, you really have no idea.  Does your child use internet chat rooms or social networking websites?  If so, do you know how easy the internet makes it for someone to create a whole new, fake identity?

Internet Safety for Kids: How and Why Parents Should Learn About the Internet

Internet Safety for Kids: How and Why Parents Should Learn About the Internet For Preventative Measures

A good understanding of computer and internet use can better enable you to protect your child.  Do you know that Internet Explorer, the browser that comes standard, has a free parental control option that just needs to be activated?  A few easy steps and you can have certain websites blocked from your child.  Unfortunately, you won’t know this if you don’t know all that you can know about the computer or the internet.  Speaking of the internet, additional online safety tools for parents can be purchased online as well.

Now that you know the importance of staying in the know about the internet and a computer in general, you may be curious as to how you can go about doing so.  The good news is that there are a number of ways that you can learn all that you need to know about computer and internet use.  A few of these ways are outlined below for your convenience.

Teaching yourself is an easy way to learn about the internet and computer use.  In fact, what better way is there than to just jump on the computer and see what you can find.  For starters, examine your computer or your internet browser for free internet safety tools for parents. You may also want to visit some of the websites that your child visits, just to see what they are subjecting themselves to.  Visit their online profile for MySpace, Facebook, or another social networking website.  Does it make you uneasy?  Are the discussions taking place in your child’s favorite chat room too adult?

You can also ask a trusted friend or relative for help.  Do not ask your child or teenager for help though.  If they know that you want to set up parental controls or keep tabs on their internet use, they may withhold important information from you.  Instead, invite a trusted friend or relative over for coffee and lunch and let them show you the ins and outs of the internet.  All you really need is a couple of hours.

You can also take an internet or computer education course.  These courses are sometimes offered for free or for an affordable fee by local community groups, colleges, or vocational training centers.  In fact, see if your child’s school offers anything.  Some schools host informational seminars for parents on internet safety about once a year.

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Internet Safety: What to Do When Your Child Will Not Follow Your Rules

Internet Safety: What to Do When Your Child Will Not Follow Your Rules

Are you the parent of a child or a teenager who uses the internet? If you are, you likely have internet safety rules already in place. If you do, how well is your child at following them?

When it comes to internet safety rules that you have set in place, it is important that your child follows them. Why? Because their health and safety is, literally, at risk. Not following your internet safety rules should be treated differently than a child who doesn’t clean their room. The situation is much more serious. If your child doesn’t follow the rules that you have set concerning internet use, they may unintentionally find themselves a target of a child predator.

Smiling baby boy with a hat on

What to Do When Your Child Will Not Follow Your Rules Explained

What you will want to do is re-talk to your child. Be sure that they are clear on your rules.

  • For example, if your child is allowed to use social networking websites, what are they not allowed to have posted on their profile?
  • Do you not want them to have personal information or personal pictures or videos shown?
  • Restate all rules that you have for your child and instruct them to start following them right away.
  • If your child still isn’t following your internet safety rules all of the way, you will want to give them one final warning.
  • Let them know that there are serious consequences to their actions. However, there is one important exception to this step.
  • If you suspect that your child is communicating with strangers online, like those who may be sexual predators, bypass the final warnings, as your child may already be in over their head.

As for what steps you should take next, you can ban your child from using the internet. This is the strictest form of punishment and likely the one that will send the clearest message. If your child must use the internet for school, like for a school research project, only let them do so when you are sitting right next to them. You can also make them do their research at their local library. This is a great way to make your child understand the importance and consequences of not following rules.

Another approach that you can take is to block the websites that you want to keep your child away from. For example, if you asked your child or teenager not to post personal pictures or videos of themselves online, but they still continue to do so, block the social networking websites that they use. If you have Internet Explorer, this is easy to do. First, open a new internet window. Then, from the dropdown menu select “Tools,” and then “Internet Options,” and then click on the “Content Tab.” Finally, under the heading of “Approved Sites,” you can also enter in the websites you want blocked.

You may also want to let your child use the computer when you are home or in the room. If they have their own computer, make them relocate it into a well traveled area, such as your living room. Speaking of which, if your child uses a family computer, you should always make sure that it is in an area where you can easily see what your child is doing online. This is a nice approach, as your child is still able to use the internet, but you are able to keep a close eye on them, making sure that they are following your rules.

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