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Empowering Underachievers: New Strategies to Guide Kids (8-18) to Personal Excellence Paperback – May 1, 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
If your child is capable but consistently fails to complete tasks without you getting involved...
If your child is good at heart but consistently tries to shirk responsibility...
This book can help!
Dr Spevak details what is really going on (bad attitude due to emotional immaturity) and how to get your kid unstuck. The usual methods (rewards, punishment, getting involved etc) all dissapoint because they are external to the child and do not motivate him to change. So what will? Empowering him! When the child realizes he has choices, the capability to choose well, and the opportunity to succeed, he begins to make better choices instead of "disengaging" and relying on defense mechanisms.
I have found the techniques to be very helpful on a practical level - especially "processing comments" (making comments to get your child thinking about his true underlying emotions) and "with-holds" (instead of punishments, deliberately deny the child something he asks for, and link it to a specific act of misbehavior). But just as important is understanding the underacheiver's behavior on the emotional level, the theory behind the techniques - and Dr Spevak explains this very well.
The book itself is a fast read with no Ph.D. required to comprehend. Spevek is very down to earth and gets to the point in an easy to understand, clear manner. This guy wrote a book that will change your entire perspective on the whole underachievement thing after just a couple of chapters. No b.s. to wade through, no chapters tooting his own horn, no finger-pointing and no underlying motive to sell you something...how refreshing! Years of parent-teacher meetings essentially only taught me how common this problem is in high school. Today I bought a copy of this book for my son's advisors at school. They admit their frustration in understanding why these kids just refuse to get motivated. While it doesn't give an instant fix, it surely makes you realize why all the "tactics" everyone thinks "should" work ...don't work! And that in itself changes everything... If you are the parent of a bright kid with a 1.4 GPA...buy the book. It will change you as much as your kid and suddenly everyone is part of the solution instead of the problem.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I didn't find the 'what to do' all that actionable in our circumstance, but I thought the background insight on how the underachieving think was very helpful. Read morePublished on April 11, 2014 by pjand2
Fantastic work! Thank you guys! I didn't know we could diagnose so many people around us! Helped me understand many people I live among! Read morePublished on January 30, 2014 by Eduardo Ferreira Gomes
Great insight into my son's motivation issues and presently helping us turn the issue around. "Its Attitude and Aptitude" helps me keep focused on the issue and solutions... Read morePublished on July 5, 2013 by James
Dealing w/ a teenage daughter and her struggles w/ school, this book is a true eye opener. I showed me there's a huge difference between can't and won't when it comes to students. Read morePublished on January 1, 2013 by KDC