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Developmental Assets that Can Help You Take It to The Next Level

The journey you’ve just taken is based on the 40 developmental assets. These assets are what researchers call the positive qualities, skills, characteristics, and experiences that everyone needs to live a satisfying and successful life. Grouped into eight categories, these assets are:

External assets

Internal assets

Who Support Really Family support Cares? Positive family communication

Live Commitment to Learning and Achievement motivation Learn School engagement

Other adult relationships Caring neighborhood Caring school climate Parent involvement in schooling

The Empowerment Power to Community values youth makea Youth as resources Difference Service to others Safety

Who's Boundaries and Expectations In Family boundaries Charge? School boundaries Neighborhood boundaries Adult role models Positive peer influence High expectations

What Constructive Use of Time Do You Creative activities Want Youth programs To Do? Religious community Time at home

Homework Bonding to school Reading for pleasure

You Positive Values "Gotta" Caring Believe in Equality and social justice Something Integrity Honesty Responsibility Restraint

How Do Social Competencies We All Planning and decision making Just Interpersonal competence Get Along? Cultural competence Resistance skills Peaceful conflict resolution

Good Positive Identity to be Personal power ME Self-esteem Sense of purpose Positive view of personal future

615 First Avenue Northeast, Suite 125 Minneapolis, MN 55413 612-376-8955 • 800-888-7828 The 40 developmental assets may be reproduced for educational, noncommercial uses only. From Take It to the Next Level: Making Your Life What You Want It to Be. Copyright © 2004 by Search Institute; 800-888-7828;

Take It to the


MakingYourLifeWhat YouWantIttoBe With advice and suggestions from:


Maya Babu T. J. Berden Alix Fellman Nam Nguyen Kyle Patrick Pfister Tim Phillips Stacy Tolos

Copyright © 2004 by Search Institute. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever, mechanical or electronic, without prior permission from the publisher except in brief quotations or summaries in articles or reviews, or as individual charts or graphs for educational use. For additional permission, write to Permissions at Search Institute.

Someone has gotten to know you, a little or a lot, and has seen your strengths and talents. This person wants you to live a good life and knows the best way to do that is by encouraging you to discover and use your unique talents and abilities.


The Next Level Now that you’re in your teens, you have new ideas, responsibilities, and opportunities. You also have more freedom, more choices to make, and more chances every day to succeed—or fail, both of which are okay. Failure gives you a chance to learn about yourself and succeed in the future. As you get older, decisions and choices in your life are increasingly up to you. You might ask for advice or watch others’ examples, but every day when you face the question of what to do, you get to choose, and you have to choose (even if you choose not to do anything). This freedom and responsibility can be exciting, confusing, challenging, and scary all at once. You can think of life like a video game. You work hard, practicing and playing to master one level. But once you master that level, the game isn’t over—there’s one level after another to play and learn. The person who gave you this idea book is saying, “You’re ready to take it to the next level.”

About Search Institute

Exploring what you think, what you believe, what you’ve experienced, and what you hope for prepares you for the next level. Using the solid knowledge of your own heart, body, and mind is the strongest way to be and live, not just today, but tomorrow as well.

Search Institute is an independent, nonprofit, nonsectarian organization whose mission is to provide leadership, knowledge, and resources to promote healthy children, youth, and

THisidea book will give you some new ways

communities. The institute collaborates with others to promote long-term organizational and cultural change that supports its mission.

Search Institute 615 First Avenue Northeast Suite 125 Minneapolis, MN 55413

612-376-8955 800-888-7828

Credits Editor:Rebecca

Aldridge Design + typesetting:


Mary Ellen Buscher

Brad Norr Design

74 I SBN 1 -5

82 - 84 7 - 9

to think about yourself and your life. It provides questions, quotations, and thoughts to help you find answers on your own. So think of this as your book. Read it, write in it, draw on it, do anything to make it yours. Start at the beginning or start at the end; use colored pens or pencils; doodle in the margins while you’re thinking; write in a code only you can understand; cross out questions you don’t like and write in new ones; staple in your own pages; share your thoughts with someone else or keep them private. There aren’t any rules here, just ideas.

It's Your Book


Who Really Cares? We all need other people—whether to encourage us during tough times or to celebrate with us during good times. Do you have people in your life who appreciate who you are? People who watch your back? People you can depend on to be real with you? People you can trust to keep your secrets? When you have people in your life who care about you and support you, it’s easier for you to know how to care about others—how to be compassionate and helpful when a sister, brother, parent, or friend is upset.

hink about the relationships in your the life. Put your own name in es nam the in fill ee circles, center circle. In the top thr r you t nec con the lines that you can always count on. On the of three people you know In t or became close. few words about how you me circle with theirs, write a would like to feel closer names of three people you bottom three circles, list the te down how you could t your circle with theirs, wri to. On the lines that connec better. get to know those people

What are the ways you re already good at being there for other people? I’m a good listener. People come to me for advice. I stand up for my friends. People depend on me to tell them the truth. I give sincere compliments. I make other people feel welcome. I understand other people’s feelings.

Do you ever wish you had more people in your life who really listen to you, understand you, and accept you for who you are? Try these ideas for building and strengthening relationships: If you don’t know what to talk Talk with one of your best friend’s parents. for you? What was life like when about, try asking: What’s a typical day like you were my age? Introduce yourself to a teacher you’ve heard is cool. You could ask: Who’s the most successful person you’ve ever taught?

Find a club, class, or organization that interests you. repair, or some other activity. Offer to help a neighbor with yard work, a car

What ELSE could you do?



Take It to the Next Level: Making Your Life What You Want It to Be  

Help young people focus on what they really want and how to get it.

Take It to the Next Level: Making Your Life What You Want It to Be  

Help young people focus on what they really want and how to get it.