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Parents and Students, I Have One Piece of Advice For You

Moms, dads, and high school seniors, I'm going to ask you to do something harder than almost anything you have ever done. It's going to take extreme focus, dedication, and soul-searching, especially this time of year when admissions decisions are beginning to get rolled out and emotions are at an all-time high. However, it is a complete mindset shift when you commit fully to this idea.

Your daily goal? Focus on yourselves and your kids, and not on other students who are going through the process.

Don't get me wrong, you can be happy for someone else who gets accepted to a college or gets a big scholarship. In fact, I hope you are! But the opposite—bad-mouthing and jealousy—are two of the ugliest things you can do. When you eliminate them from your life, you achieve beyond anything you ever thought could happen because you invest in yourself. 

RELATED: A Message to Parents from a Parent Who Has Been Through It

We all know someone close to us who pays so much attention to other people's successes and failures. They find ways to blame others instead of taking responsibility or investing in their own story. For example, if someone gets admitted to a college or gets a job that they wanted, they get angry, bitter, and plain old nasty about it. Sound like someone you know? Oh, yes indeed. 
Sometimes others get opportunities for the right reasons and sometimes they get them for the wrong reasons. Either way, if we are so concerned about others, we miss our own opportunities to develop ourselves further, to grow, and to shine. There is no better example of this than the college process. 
Over the next few weeks and months, you are going to hear about a lot of students' successes and failures. And it's easy to take it personally when someone you know gets admitted and you don't. You will hear about students getting "likely" letters or even acceptances. You will hear about students getting admitted that are seemingly "less qualified" than you. You can say that it's because they are an athlete, an underrepresented minority, a legacy, a VIP, or just lucky. But the fact is that colleges want students for different reasons, and it's impossible to please all. 

Read More: 5 Things to Do Between November 1st and Mid-December

In the end, everyone wants to end up at a college, company, job, family, and community that values who they are. And until you find that place or that person, keep looking. When you do, the right college, company, job, family, and community will allow you to shine.