6. “Hold the Course”—Track Progress and Renew Energy (Courage to persevere)


The heroic journey for teenagers takes a long time, like eight years or so. That means that a key to success is being able to stay on the path and stay healthy. That’s the same challenge faced by CEOs and managers leading corporate change, but most corporate change initiatives last a much shorter time than adolescence. 

One of the ways to stay healthy and renew energy is to pay attention to the energy traps and the sources of energy that were laid out in the section “Ups and Downs.” Remember that it is usually best to spend 30% of your time avoiding or dealing with the energy traps and 70% taking advantage of the sources of energy.

Check-ins to stay on the path—how will you review progress? The best way to do this is to keep it frequent and informal – and with others as much as possible. A good way to do a review is in three parts (celebrate, learn and determine next actions). This three-part check-in also creates energy.

  • First ask, “What do I have to celebrate?” These can be final goal achievements or steps on the way (even small steps). 
  • Second, ask, “What have I learned?” You might have learned something about yourself, about what’s required to achieve a goal, about others, about relationships, about how the world works, etc.
  • Third ask, “What do I want to keep doing, start doing or stop doing?” This gives you a lot of power because you can keep identifying the most effective actions. 

One of the benefits to paying attention to renewing energy and staying on the path is that it naturally builds your ability to deal with change and that will be important throughout life. By paying attention you get more savvy, you become more resilient, and your confidence grows. 

You will find that your ability to persevere will depend heavily on how much success you have had creating your vision and plan as well as how well you have done developing a web of support. That will help you deal with the challenges of mastery (remember “learning to love the plateau”?) as well as recovering from the inevitable setbacks and injuries that everyone encounters in some form of the journey.

Sometimes, however, it just comes down to finding the courage to persevere.  

Two Keys to Success

This is a relatively simple approach to managing your journey, but it is not easy and there is a lot more to each of these six strategies. This section is designed to give you a solid base that allows you to say, 

“OK, if I pay attention to these six strategies, I should be successful.”

To execute these six strategies well, there are two things you can do:

  1. Have conversations with others – other teenagers and adults. These can be one-on-one conversations or in groups. This site is intended to support these conversations because (one more time) heroes don’t go alone. 
  2. Use the resources in the resource section and find lots more on your own. We will continue to add resources, but it’s amazing how many resources are out there and there will be lots that we just don’t find. Let us know what you find.


Examples From the Resource Section

Here are just a few examples, but they should give you an idea of how much available to support you. Just go look around and then share with others what you find (let me know also—thanks).

From Sean Covey’s book, The 6 Most Important Decisions You Will Ever Make

“There are six key decisions you make during your teen years that can make or break your future. So, choose wisely, and don’t blow it.

If you do happen to blow it, however, it’s not the end of the world. Just get back on track quickly and start making smarter choices.”

The six choices relate to:

  1. School
  2. Friends
  3. Parents
  4. Dating & Sex
  5. Addictions
  6. Self-Worth

A short video on being significant in small, but powerful, ways



From The Success Principles for Teens, by Jack Canfield and Kent Healy (20 principles)

  1. Take 100% Responsibility for Your Life
  2. Believe It’s Possible
  3. Decide What You Want
  4. Be Clear Why You’re Here
  5. See the Best to Be the Best
  6. Unleash the Power of Goal Setting
  7. Release the Breaks
  8. See What You Want, Get What You See
  9. Act As If
  10. Just Lean Into It

11.   Face Your Fears Head On
12.  Be Willing to Pay the Price
13.  Ask! Ask! Ask!
14.  Reject Rejection
15.  Use Feedback to Fast-Forward
16.  Stop Hanging With Turkeys and Soar With Eagles
17.  Keep Score of Your Success and Build On It
18.  Perform With Persistence by Keeping Your Eyes on the Prize
19.  Give Your Best to Be Your Best
20.  Start Now...Just Do It!

An article on “active listening”

From Kid’s Health—Good General Site on Health

General Site on Teen Personal Finance

General Site on Adolescent development—Lots of Topics

Commercial for English Class on Identity

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