We have BAD news and Good news - - - First, THE BAD ·         As we hear almost daily, there’s an ever-increasing number of teenage drug addiction cases, deaths, etc. ·         Addiction SUCCESS is VERY LOW – ·         90% (!!!) of drug rehab clients FAIL or FALL BACK ·         Success rate is approximately 10% - nationally! ·         The HUGE cost is not just $$$$ – it’s HUGE and long-term ·         Stress, family strife, aggravation and worry for the family as well as the teen ·         The effects are ALWAYS long-term – for life!! ·         Parents – it’s time to pay attention ·         Stop telling yourself – “maybe others, but not my kid” ·         PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE pay attention ·         Please go to this link for signs and indicators:    http://drugfree.org/article/look-for-warning-signs/#.WRRZyjHQDr8.email But there’s GOOD NEWS!! A positive and preventative strategy! This is the process we use at Launch-Your-Life.com - you can use it too: Coach Steve’s Success Tips of the Week [follow these in sequence] 1.     Brainstorm Dreams 2.     Select 1 or 2 as Goals 3.     Work toward them DAILY 4.     Learn from setbacks 5.     Be Persistent– DON’T GIVE UP And if the goal changes, THAT’S OK! [it’s the goal-pursuit PROCESS that’s the power] And we are available to speak to parents and other groups – on this and other teenage success-related topics. 
15.05.2017
Steve Simons
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Addressing, PREVENTING teenage drug addiction - News Challenge 13, WNYT-TV.  PLEASE WATCH – IMPORTANT INFORMATION for parents of teens. //wnyt.com/news/addiction-awareness-launch-your-life/4482313/?cat=12168
12.05.2017
Steve Simons
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Tomorrow morning, May 13, at 8:15am, we will be discussing teenage drug addiction and recovery on News Challenge 13, WNYT-TV.  Please watch or record it – important information for parents of teens.
17.01.2017
Steve Simons
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Pride of achievement is THE most powerful motivator influencing human performance.  [for dogs, it’s probably treats or affection.]  Pride of performance is especially important for teens as they and their self-perception grow.  They waver between [believing] they know everything – against doubting and questioning themselves, their parents and the world. So building a resilient self-image at this age can only strengthen their future.  How does a parent begin to build or strengthen their teen’s self-pride? We usually think of three kinds of motivation: FEAR, INCENTIVE, and PRIDE of ACHIEVEMENT.  Experience and even empirical evidence shows that Pride of Performance is THE most powerful!!  So – let’s use it!  [FYI - There are spiritual or Biblical references to pride as one of seven deadly sins.  This is NOT that kind of pride.] One approach we find that begins influence motivational initiative is to invite teens to identify one thing they would take pride in achieving “tomorrow or this week.”  “Billy/ Joey/ Bobbi, what ONE thing could you accomplish this week that you would feel really good about?”  Sometimes, you’ll receive a sarcastic reply… Pause, wait them out – say nothing but don’t walk away.  Make it obvious “we’re not done.”   When you get an answer - DO NOT JUDGE.  If it’s important or meaningful to the person, that’s sufficient.  What also can happen – if or in a group – is that someone else – a peer – may say “oh, c’mon, Joey, that’s lame, who are you kidding?”  And if Joey is sincere, he’ll defend his goal.  And if it IS a weak, limp, ‘minor-league’ goal – he’ll replace it.  For a parent, let it go.  DO NOT critique or judge.  They’ll come around soon enough.  Now on to the keys: 1.      As days and weeks continue, invite and request that they progressively increase what they’re pursuing.  As this progression continues, the achiever’s self-expectation AND self-image strengthens.  And self-image is THE single-most influential, guiding and defining factor in all human performance. 2.      KEEP SCORE!  Put up a chart on the wall in which your teen is asked to WRITE “Yes or No,” achieved or not, or a mark or number – whatever makes sense.  Be absolutely assured that this is a very effective mode of drawing attention.  Basic rule of business which directly applies here: What gets measured - gets attention! Can you imagine how motivating it is for someone to FAIL to achieve the goal they said they were proud of pursuing and achieving?  INEVITABLY, if it truly was important to them, they will re-commit the next week – and probably the week after, and so on - and that’s what we’re after!!  And here’s where you’ll know you hit a home run – when they say to you – “I’m gonna bump it up higher this week!” Try it out, keep score of achievements and progression – and watch them grow!
29.09.2016
Steve Simons
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Several years ago, driving to the Outer Banks for vacation, on a Pennsylvania country road, I stopped at a “four-way stop” intersection [I thought], I saw a car coming on my right and assumed they would also stop.  I proceeded into the intersection – BAMM!! My mistake – that road did NOT have a stop sign! L Afterward, I got to thinking of the definition of “accident.”  It’s something you simply did not expect, it ‘came out of nowhere’ – you thought you had it covered. That’s EXACTLY what’s happening to many of today’s incoming college students.  They have the best academic preparation ever – and yet a disturbing and increasing proportion ARE FAILING.  WHY?  [and how about yours?] Parents today give their kids the best schools, the best parenting, the best mentoring, the best tutors – and they still fail!  [certainly not all, but the numbers increase every year: drop-outs or taking 5 or 6 years to complete (a very expensive) 4-year degree, etc.  But wait, IT GETS WORSE: very often, these students haven’t developed the skills and habits to succeed at a job AFTER graduation!  They don’t know how to undertake and complete projects and tasks, plan, prioritize, allocate their time - and that’s what employers WANT and NEED! The critical issue is that, you, the parent, have very little way to KNOW if they’ll succeed in college until they’re there! Take the quick survey below for immediate feedback!  And if you’d like to strengthen your teen’s success, even if they’re already strong, consider this: Coaching and developing success skills – goal-setting, self-discipline, self-motivation, planning, time management, rebounding from setbacks and defeats – are the core and habits built through the program and process of Launch-Your-Life.com.  Whether your teenage student is weak, average or strong, developing these skills, knowledge and habits can only IMPROVE their future!! Connect to Launch.Daily@gmail.com for further information, respond to this blog, or email us. Is your teenager poised for success? 1.      My teenager starts most days with clear, specific goals, directed toward some long-term dream goal 1.      Always 2.      Mostly 3.      Some 4.      Not often/ never 2.      When my teenager does not achieve a goal - fails’, they find out WHY – and begin strengthening for the next attempt 1.      Always 2.      Mostly 3.      Some 4.      Not often/ never 3.      When my teenager does not achieve a goal - ‘fails’, they interpret it as a challenge to perform better the next time 1.      Always 2.      Mostly 3.      Some 4.      Not often/ never SCORING If you scored your teenager as 1’s on all questions, they are solidly poised for success.  If you would like to strengthen, accelerate and assure their success in college and in life, Launch-Your-Life will still be a wise investment, to strengthen, assure and accelerate their future.  To learn more, go here… ____________.  [note to self: which page?] If you scored your teenager as a mix of 1’s and 2’s, there’s room for growth.  To learn more, go here… ____________.  [note to self: which page?] If you scored your teenager as a mix of 2’, 3’s and 4’s – they will need to strengthen their self-management skills to release their true potential and capacity.   Launch-Your-Life can definitely strengthen and prepare them for an even more successful college and life career.  To learn more, go here… ____________.  [note to self: which page?] NOTE to parents: if you scored them as all 2’s, it shows a need for growth and change – otherwise their real potential will remain partially dormant.
16.09.2016
Steve Simons
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We all hope for it, wish for it, would do anything to help our teenagers achieve it! And when we talk about success, many of us quickly become quite philosophical and say “It’s not just money.” And of course, that’s right.  SUCCESS surely includes family life, interpersonal relationships, good health - but be assured that a frustrated, unfulfilled career WILL reverberate, permeate and diminish one’s life. Let’s first recognize that career success is not simply from knowledge – but rather if and how that knowledge is USED.  If the most skilled surgeon in the world doesn’t USE those skills, s/he is as average as the rest of us. But wait - - average?  What was Garrison Keilor’s line about Lake Wobegon – “where all the men are handsome and all the children are above average.” Many times, average [or above or below] is defined by an IQ test score.  However, those tests measure and predict only ONE THING: school success.  As soon as a student leaves school, IQ scores become (relatively) meaningless. We all know countless stories of people who couldn’t read well – or didn’t possess some other school skill – but who achieved great things in business or science or entertainment, etc.   Henry Ford said he wanted to surround himself with people smarter than him – and he was clearly very successful. It’s UNTRUE that everyone’s created equal.  We’re not!  We each have differing strengths, weaknesses, talents, shortcomings, etc.  We’ve certainly seen MUCH unexpected talent on TV shows in recent years.  So – one key element is to discover what your child’s talent is. Young people (and others) are sometimes cautioned about pursuing a goal for which they aren’t “talented.”  I’d suggest - let’s let him/her pursue that goal, learn what’s needed to achieve it, see how dedicated or committed s/he is – and regardless of natural talent – go for it!  Worst case scenario is that they’ll learn about themselves.  BEST case?  They may become the world’s best musician OR teacher OR engineer OR coach OR heart surgeon, etc., unless they were guided away by someone’s well-intentioned advice not to pursue that goal. Fact is, Daniel Goleman in his seminal book EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE documented the fact that the greatest predictor and driver of success is how one handles defeats – it’s NOT intelligence, talent, level OR source of education nor genetics.  The deciding trait is whether s/he handles defeat or failure in a non-emotional, learn-from-this-experience and try again manner. In coming weeks, we will explore how to strengthen and accelerate your child’s success. And of course, please feel free to comment on these thoughts.
22.06.2016
Steve Simons
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THE FACTS   1.      The future is NOT rosy for an increasing number of college students (maybe even one you know).  Reports show that more and more have poor self-management skills – self-discipline, self-motivation, goal-setting, emotional intelligence, time management, etc. 2.      A teenager’s college and life success is based far less on academic grades and learning and even family background than most people expect. 3.      THERE IS A SOLUTION: Launch-Your-Life (LYL) is a one-on-one success coaching program, delivered by text message, email, Skype and phone [geography is not an issue] 4.      Every LYL participant WILL GAIN!  Poor, average or excellent, participants WILL accelerate and strengthen their achievements. 5.      The LYL process, leads students to THEIR OWN self-motivated focus on academic success. TO LEARN MORE, CLICK HERE… Launch-Your-Life.com 6.      The LYL process is designed to be enjoyable and rewarding. Students become happier, more fulfilled, more confident.  7.      LYL works for those who work it.  As participants start to see SUCCESS, they want MORE. 8.      Cost is minimal especially compared to costs of college, sports camps, music lessons, karate, etc.  [and college costs will be maximized with their improved performance.] 9.      Daily time commitment is only 8 minutes!   TO LEARN MORE, CLICK HERE… Launch-Your-Life.com
08.06.2016
Steve Simons
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That’s GREAT!! That’s our motto, That’s our process, That’s our goal! We all know that positive reinforcement – a compliment about something specific – is the most powerful means of shaping and improving human performance.  But who do we compliment the least?  OURSELVES.  Same for our kids! [They compliment themselves least]. It’s a natural human tendency to critique ourselves – because we’re the only one(s) who can see inside our heads – and KNOW when we didn’t give it our full effort So one of the premises we follow at Launch-Your-Life is to REVERSE those self-expectations.  A paradigm reversal such as that can be one of the most powerful learning and memory-cementing devices there is. Think about that: we remember MOST an experience that was LEAST expected.  Using our model, almost no matter what a student did or does, we start by saying “That’s Great!”  And most of the time, the student’s reaction is “What?? Huh??” They simply weren’t expecting that response. This accomplishes a couple things.  First – it gets their attention – because it was THE LAST thing they expected to hear.  So now we’ve got their attention - they’re listening.  It’s up to us to build on that.  Not like Pollyanna or Mary Poppins – but qualitatively.  We point out some positive aspect or element of what they did - AND THEN, we focus on building and strengthening their next several, sequential response(s) – which builds positive expectancy momentum, self-confidence, motivation, all building toward a big and successful FINISH/completion/fulfillment!
31.05.2016
Steve Simons
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Recently. I heard a mother say “I’m the worst helicopter parent – I can’t stop myself…”  [I’ve also heard people are tiring of the term “helicopter parenting.”]  So whether you’re ‘guilty’ of helicopter parenting or not, let’s transcend it– and focus on STRENGTHENING what a parent can do - - to build achievers, succeeders and champions. Let’s start here: those notorious IQ tests –the real ones, administered one-on-one by a licensed psychologist, measure THE SPEED at which people learn, NOT whether or not they CAN learn.  Take that one step further - when a student encounters difficulty learning, it simply means the learning may take more time, not that they CAN’T learn.  And instantly one excellent quote comes to mind:  “All things are difficult before they are easy.”  (Thomas Fuller, circa 1650.)  So if your teenager is experiencing difficulty learning – in any field, your role becomes supporting their progressive steps toward mastery.  And based on the research findings of Carol Dweck and colleagues – who found that, when students understand that the ability to learn is NOT finite and limited – that they are NOT ‘terminally dumb,’ students CHANGE their perception of “failure.”  They realize that a failure is simply a step along the way to success.  And that directly supports the notion that failure is a REQUIRED step along the path to success.  [The key issue – and this is where parents’ role becomes more valuable – is that the student LEARNS from a failure.]  Failure is simply a road sign that says “we’re not there yet.”  Remember those family road trips when your kids asked, after the first 4 blocks – “are we there yet?” - Same thing. J One of the best ways to reverse a misperception is to hugely alter the expected paradigm.  When a student glumly looks like – or even says – “I’m so dumb” – or “I worked so hard and failed – I give up” - you could say something like “you got a D? That’s great!  At least it wasn’t an F – and you’ve got room to develop and grow.  Now how do you think we can do that?” Or – “you studied a lot for that chemistry exam – and didn’t get the A you expected.  If you had it to do over, how would you change your strategy?”  [and DON’T let them off with “I’d study harder.”  That’s too global and hence meaningless.] So the key elements are: (a) intelligence is NOT limited, and (b) recognizing that failure is just one step closer to success! [AND you should throw in – those who don’t fail aren’t even in the game!!]
03.05.2016
Steve Simons
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Your teenager’s success [or non-success] will be decided by THREE basic, foundational PREREQUISITE building blocks.  Without them, s/he is committed to a life of mediocrityL! And WITH THEM, even if they’re average in all other areas, they are essentially guaranteed success.  Here’s why: we believe that knowledge is power.  IT IS NOT!  Like a battery, knowledge is potential power – but it’s useless until and unless it’s connected to something – to life, as it were! To connect that battery, the three attributes below are the ‘connecting cables’ to success! And as reported by college officials, far too many college students are significantly lacking in these three traits. Here’s what they NEED to succeed: 1.      The stamina and willingness to rebound after a defeat.  No one has ever achieved anything of significance without failing along the road to success.  And if you’ve shielded them from failures or defeats, they have probably not developed this capacity. [hopefully, not your teenager.] 2.      After suffering a defeat, it’s crucial to LEARN from that setback. REMEMBER - a failure is a mistake you didn’t learn from. If they keep repeating the same mistake over and over, success is getting no closer! L As a parent, it’s OK for you to ‘comfort them’ - “oh, it’ll be OK” – but then move quickly on to “what did you learn?” This can take time, effort and exploration. Recognize that it’s overly simplistic and virtually worthless to say “work harder.”  Your student needs specifics: do more of WHAT?  Do LESS of what?  Focus on what specific area or element?  And if they were ‘lazy’ – there’s A REASON they were lazy: didn’t really care, didn’t really know what or how to it.  This is where you explore, ask, ask, and ask, deeper and deeper. 3.      The final prerequisite building block is true and real goal-setting.  Real goals are specific and measurable.  If they aren’t either of those, they aren’t goals.  And if they’re not specific and measurable, you’ll never know if or when you arrived.  The pursuit of goals IS LIFE – whether family and relationships, business or professional success or physical health, etc. Goals need to continue THROUGHOUT life! As we said at the top, if your teenager possesses and APPLIES these attributes, they WILL SUCCEED.  And if they don’t, you can pretty well bet they will fall short of their true potential throughout all of life. And your key role as a parent is to check, assure or help them obtain these traits and habit patterns.  For an assessment tool go to Student (or Parent) Questionnaire at Get Started, at Launch-Your-Life.com and see what you learn!  And as needed, please contact us at Launch-Your-Life.com for further information or guidance!  SUCCESS!!
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