Tuesday, May 10, 2022



We’ve seen much craziness and wild accusations in recent months and years about schools, teachers, school boards, etc. - some well-intentioned, some self-serving.

Please remind yourself:

YOU are ultimately responsible for your teenager’s life and success, NOT the school, teachers or school board.

Brief reminders: THE RESEARCH IS CLEAR – neither intelligence nor school grades predict nor define success for your teen.  The two most important, most powerful influences toward anyone’s success are RESILIENCE and RESOURCEFULNESS.

One of the weaknesses of today’s teens is the result of helicopter parenting – that is, parents protecting their kids from adversity, failure, defeat – WITH THE RESULT – documented by countless college professors – that, when they fail, today’s college students DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO ☹ ☹.

There are a couple things you can do to strengthen your teen’s resilience:

(1)  DO NOT ‘fix things for them –

(2)  instead, ask them what they think they should do – this time or ‘the next time’ –

(3)  AND THEN [VERY important] - ask a follow-up question or two:

·       “how do you think that will work” –

·       “what past experience makes you think that?” 

There are more, but that’s a start.

It’s been said that ‘every time you do something for your child that they could have done, you (o) prevented learning AND (o) taught them that you don’t have confidence in them!!!

The more you follow our suggested ASK, DON’T TELL approach, the more resilient and innovative and self-confident your teen will become!  And isn’t that a worthy goal?

ASK, DON’T TELL is much like the Socratic method – or a Jewish mother: always reply with a question, never an answer!      [we have a resource we can send you if you’d like]


To build Resourcefulness, again, ask A LOT of questions, then invite and reinforce wild ’n crazy ideas!!

It’s been said that “every new idea was at first considered preposterous.”  How true!!  In the days of the Fax machine, imagine that salesman telling you – “I’m going to send this piece of paper though your phone line…”   WHAT????????

Good questions:

·       “How else might you or could you do that?” [whatever the task]

·       “How else?” [again!]

·       “What’s the real goal here?  [that will very often re-slant their approach]

Again, it’s been said“Nothing is more dangerous than one idea when it’s the only one you have.”

 Brainstorming – a treasure trove, a gold mine, a flood of wild ’n crazy ideas!!  KEY POINT: while brainstorming, NO NEGATIVES - nothing rejected [that comes later, after (1) clarifying, and (2) combining, where possible]

GUIDE, LEAD, INFLUENCE your teen toward great success: Resilient, Resourceful - for life!! 

If I can help you in any way, please message me to discuss what’s on your parenting mind [at no charge].  [for background] I’m a former spec ed director, school psychologist, 30+ year success coach now focusing on teenagers.

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