Where were these books when I was a teen? I could have used some inspiration, advice, or lists of literature for teenagers. Today, there's an abundance of books for teens. A quick Google search for "teen books" gave me 58,000,000 links! Recently I reviewed Boys Lie, a book for teen girls, and now I'm presenting an interview with the author of multiple books for teens.
Laura Lyseight has written four books for teens, Don't Learn 4 Exams!, Teens - Beat Future Economic Crisis!, The Teen With a Millionaire Mindset, and 1001 Life Changing Quotes 4 Teens. She is generously offering one autographed book as a giveaway, which follows this interview. Please indicate in your comment which book you'd like to win.
1) Welcome, Laura! I am thrilled to have the honor of interviewing you. Please tell us a bit about your background, and why you do what you do.
LL: I am equally honored to be interviewed by you, Susan. I am a teen coach, private tutor, and author, who loves and is inspired to write for teens. I also own two businesses, making me an entrepreneur. My passion and drive is to help the teens of this generation discover their true purpose and potential as teens, before they face the adult life. My obsession is to rewire them for success.
I was originally born in Ghana and had the opportunity of teaching across most secondary schools. Upon arrival in the U.K., I noticed a lack of drive, direction, and ambition in the teens and wanted to help, to reprogram their mindset to value their teen years and tap into their hidden potentials. I thought to myself, these teens have all it takes to succeed, but why are they practically overlooking or abusing resources? The light came on when I realised they needed more understanding and genuine interest from the adults around them, and that this could be achieved through coaching and personal development.
2) Your books are targeted to teenagers. Why are teens your ideal audience?
LL: I am sure you will agree with me that the teenage years are very crucial in everybody's life. This is the stage where you can easily make or break yourself. Our teen years have a significant bearing on our adult life and who we eventually become. Most of the problems that adults face today, could have been easily avoided if they formed the right habits in their teen years.
Most teens are confused about their true identity and this is perfectly normal, as unknown to them, their hormones kick in and cause chaos. I strongly believe this is the time that they need the most help and understanding. They need coaching, mentoring, and sound advice to help them realise this is a passing stage, and they must be wise in their undertakings, rather than succumb to peer pressure, fashion crazes, forming gangs, and the list could go on. Somebody needs to point them in the right direction, so they do not end up as most adults who are dissatisfied with their lives. The earlier you catch and mend any errors in life, the better you stand the chance of being a success, and this is why teens are my target audience.
3) I am intrigued by the idea of creating an entrepreneurial or millionaire mindset in teens and want to know more. How can parents help cultivate this in their children?
LL: Most parents were once teens themselves and can now better advise their teen children against the very mistakes and wrong turnings they took in their youth. However, as we all know, teens normally ignore advice from parents and those in authority. I personally think the work must be done from childhood even before they reach their teen years. One parent that I worked with encouraged a saving habit with her two year old son who is now seven and has three piggy banks. I actually share the full story in my book Teens - Beat Future Economic Crisis!: Habits of the Go-getter Entrepreneurial Teen. This young person I believe will forever be wise with his money and probably learn how to invest his money.
The work of creating that entrepreneurial spirit or millionaire mindset in teens, and I call it work, because it take will take an extra effort to help a teen see their life from this perspective, if all they see are parents or adults in 9 to 5 jobs.
This can be done especially by getting your teen child personal developmental books, encouraging them to read biographies and autobiographies of successful men and women, going to seminars, being coached, etc., so that their mindsets are gradually changed to see the abundance that God has already put out for us.
Most teens have heard time and time again, how money is the root of all evil, that money does not grow on trees, money is hard to come by or we cannot avoid this or that by parents or well meaning adults and unfortunately teens carry this notion into their adult lives. Our teens need to be taught how to vibrate at the millionaire and entrepreneurial frequencies.
4) You talk about the importance of delaying gratification--how can parents encourage this in a world of cell phones, email, instant messages, and texting?
LL: Delayed gratification is a BIG issue with this microwave generation, they are not entirely to be blamed, as society has contributed largely to this credit card way of life and instant gratification.
What was discovered in the Marshmallow Test that was conducted in the 1960's showed that young children who were able to practice delayed gratification at four years of age were more likely to be socially competent, assertive, trustworthy, dependable, able to cope, and likely to embrace challenge.
Parents should encourage their teens to hold back, so they can get something better later and this is in support of this quote, "Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won't, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can't." A student from W.G. Tracy's class quoted this.
The truth, though, is that this beneficial habit cannot be forced on teens. It takes time and parents should aim at being in friendship first, and not try to impose this on their teens. In my books, I share lots of interesting stories about teens who practiced delayed gratification and went on to be achievers.
5) As a parent of teen girls, I try to minimize the importance of physical appearance, but my daughters exist in a culture which is often very superficial--and damaging to self-worth. Do your books address the extra challenges teen girls may face?
LL: My heart goes out to teen girls and my passion is to help them look beyond themselves and place the price of the queen on who they are. They need to understand that there is more to them than meets the natural eye. They are created in the image of God. Their lives are not all about the next fashion craze, hairstyle , make-up, etc..
I will be the first to admit that, yes, these things have their place, especially in the life of a teenager, but you should not want to be, do, or have something just because your friend has it or is doing the same thing or that is fashion trend.
Here is my message for teenage girls: Young, beautiful, and promising lady, you are unique and are created with the most exclusive genetic code. There is no one person who looks, talks, walks or acts like you. You are one of a kind, look at yourself in the mirror and look at the positioning of your eyes, nose, lips--you are a masterpiece.
All those superficial things cannot define your identity. They should not be your sole focus, you are a success waiting to happen, the whole world is waiting on you, focus on the right things. You are too valuable and should not let anybody's opinion of you become your reality. All of my books are designed to build self-value and worth in our teens.
6) Who are some of your personal role models or mentors? Do you have a favorite motivational quote or quotes that you'd like to share with readers?
LL: Jesus Christ is my role model, my mentors are uncountable: Robert Kiyosaki, Zig Ziglar, Les Brown, Donald Trump, Jim Rohn, Napoleon Hill, Denis Waitley and that is to name a few.
Some of my favourite quotes:
"Teens are not monsters. They are just people trying to learn how to make it among the adults in the world, who are probably not so sure themselves."
" I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
" To be a winner, one simple rule to follow is, hang around winners."
7) Do you feel as if you have met your professional goals, and what's next for you?
LL: I just love what I am doing, as it gives me a sense of fulfillment- impacting, challenging, and transforming the lives of our future generation by helping them create their own unique success stories. My next book, which I am still working on, The Three Coolest Teens That Ever Lived!, addresses identity crisis amongst teens in detail.
Thank you, Laura! It has been a pleasure to learn more about your work, and you are gracious to offer a book giveaway to my readers.
- To enter this giveaway, simply leave a comment. Please indicate which book you'd like to win: Don't Learn 4 Exams!, Teens - Beat Future Economic Crisis!, 1001 Life Changing Quotes 4 Teens, or The Teen With a Millionaire Mindset.
- For an extra chance at winning, become a follower of this blog, or let me know that you're already a follower, or that you subscribe in Google Reader.
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Enter by 5 PM PDT on Monday, August 2. One winner will be selected randomly and announced on Tuesday, August 3. Good luck!