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10 Things The Successful Teen Does

A few months ago I wrote Rich Habits – Correlation, Causation, and Poverty, discussing the merits of Tom Corley’s book Rich Habits and the validity of studying the difference in what the rich do compared to the poor. Since that time, I’ve observed my 15 year old daughter and how she approaches her schoolwork, manages her time, and still puts charity as one of her priorities. With an invitation to read my Rich Habits article, and to write about what her own habits are, my daughter came up with her own list of ten things the successful teen does.

  1. Makes goals, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, and long term. It is impossible to be successful if you don’t know what you are aiming for. Making large goals is important to see where you want to get. Making small goals is also key as they are simpler to achieve. If your goal is to make the soccer team that may seem overwhelming, but practicing 2 hours each day seems much more realistic. I like to keep a list of my monthly goals taped to the mirror in my bathroom. It’s the last thing I look at before I go to sleep and I the first thing I look at in the morning. It keeps me inspired and motivated.
  2. Puts a little effort into how they look. No need to wear designer from head to toe but putting a little effort into how you look can make you feel better. When you feel better you can spend more time working hard and helping others.
  3. Uses social media safely and to their benefit. Using social media to post pictures of you partying or drinking is not only inappropriate but colleges and bosses will be less keen on wanting you. Posting appropriate content though, can be beneficial. For example, if you are a dancer post your solos on YouTube, you never know what choreographer may stumble upon them. If you want to have social media for fun, just be sure that if your boss or teacher saw it, you would be nothing but proud.
  4. Doesn’t let the little things bother them. If you let getting a B on a history test or not making the basketball team bother you, stop right now. Life is constantly going to throw you setbacks. Learn from your mistakes and move on.
  5. Focuses on a few things but does them well. It can be extremely stressful for a teen to be committed to so many activities. Not only can it make them stressed but one will not be able to do any one of them well. Instead focus on a few but train hard and do them well.
  6. Work hard in school. Study a lot. Turn in all your homework on time and give 100% effort. Working hard in school is important so you learn how to manage time and master work ethics once making it into the big leagues.
  7. Ignores rude people and haters. Don’t let a hater on your Facebook wall or a jealous person in school bother you. Successful people are often the ones that have to put up with the most amount of crap. It stinks, but learn to look at them and laugh….inside.
  8. Gives back to the community. You become much more aware and feel better when giving back. Join a club at school or think about where your community could use assistance.
  9. They are healthy.  I’m sure you have heard this before but I will repeat it. Eat clean, workout at least 1 hour per day, and get about 8 hours of sleep per night. All of these things will help you to perform better.
  10. Stay organized. Keep a to-do list on your phone so you don’t forget to do something. Have a calendar for your events and a agenda book for school. Clean your room each morning or night. If everything is organized you can focus better on the important things.

My daughter offered the title Successful Teen, and asked me if I thought of her as successful so far. I told her that I did, that I thought her habits were mature and the beginning on the path of a successful life. I’d like to find out how many of her friends and classmates have these habits, especially #1, the goal setting. It would be an interesting experiment to find these people in 10 years and if the goal goal setters are more successful than those who aren’t.

What does your teen do to improve herself and succeed?

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