Order The Teen Popularity Handbook Today

The Teen Popularity Handbook cover If you like our website content, you’ll love this book!

It is the only book of its kind. It is the handbook of how to be a popular teen, teaching you how to develop the skills to be successful in high school and beyond. Every teen, parent, grandparent, etc, needs this book.

Order The Teen Popularity Handbook Today

From the back of the book:

Any teen can become popular!

When you’re popular, life is exciting. Popular people are surrounded by close friends, fans, and secret admirers. They have the skills to form meaningful romantic relationships and rarely get bullied, because they have the confidence to stand up for themselves and others.

Wouldn’t it feel great to give a class presentation without anxiety? To have the confidence and right words to ask that special someone to the dance? Or to be able to read your crush’s body language to know what he or she really thinks about you?

How would your life change if you replaced your feelings of loneliness, awkwardness, and frustration with happiness and self-confidence?

But…Can you be popular? Yes! Popular teens think and act in ways that make them loved and admired. This book reveals these scientifically-backed “popularity secrets” and makes learning and applying them in your life fun and easy.

Don’t worry, The Teen Popularity Handbook isn’t going to turn you into a bully or “mean girl,” but a confident, fun, and well-liked teen everyone wants to get to know. Also, since studies show that popular high-schoolers earn more money later in life than unpopular teens, the benefits of being popular never end. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to start your exciting transformation into a popular teen right now!

280 pages. 

Order today in paperback and Kindle!

Science Says: Bullies Are Weak, Unpopular, and Need Social Skills

upset teen boy

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The common attitude is that bullying is a problem where high status kids make life miserable for lower status kids, like the star athlete picking on the awkward math nerd. Even movies portray this stereotype that those at the top of the social ladder are bullying jerks, while those at the bottom are innocent victims.

When Jonathan and I started discussing our concept of popularity and success a few years ago, we concluded the opposite: bullying was actually an issue of insecure people picking on even more insecure people.

As such, we have been pioneering a concept that the route to ending bullying is actually turning “victims” into people with useful social skills rather than emphasizing their victimhood. And, we have taken this even further by suggesting that bullies also need these social skills.

It turns out that research agrees. From the article Why It Pays To Be A Jerk, this excerpt appears:

Anyone who’s been through middle school might agree that “reputational aggression”—a k a vicious gossip, or even verbal abuse—seems to play a role in the status struggles of teenagers. Using data from North Carolina high schools, Faris uncovered a pattern showing that, contrary to the stereotype of high-status kids victimizing low-status ones, most aggression is local: kids tend to target kids close to them on the social ladder. And the higher one rises on that ladder, the more frequent the acts of aggression—until, near the very top, aggression ceases almost completely. Why? Kids with nowhere left to climb, Faris posits, have no more use for it. Indeed, the star athlete who demeaned the mild mathlete might come off as insecure. “In some ways,” Faris muses, “these people have the luxury of being kind. Their social positions are not in jeopardy.”

See that? People who actually have status generally aren’t the ones using bullying tactics on those without status. The psychological needs of bullies and the bullied are actually very similar: both need the skills to go up in social status.

“A rising tide lifts all boats”: Could the solution to both empowering bullying victims, and fixing bullies, be to teach both victims AND bullies positive social skills? We say YES.

This is why our definition of leadership and success emphasizes being cool and open to being friends with everyone because this is what makes a leader an actual leader. A confident and a socially competent person isn’t going to use meanness and force tactics to “get popular,” because a confident and socially competent person knows quite simply that those tactics don’t work.

The teen guy or girl at the top knows that picking on others is “bad for business” because you don’t stay at the top by alienating your fans and supporters.

Self-Confidence Comes Through Accomplishments

girls giving thumbs up

Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you are a teen (or the parent of a teen) who lacks self-confidence, you may be told by people that you need to just “be confident” or have to go through programs that seek to boost the self esteem of students like you. However, you might feel like you aren’t having any success and wonder why. Here is the reason: self-confidence comes through having accomplishments.

What I mean is that simply saying “be confident” or “you need to raise your self-esteem” is a little like a family friend of mine talking to a foreign exchange student who didn’t know English. If she didn’t understand the sentence, my friend would simply repeat the sentence more loudly. In other words, telling someone to “be confident” over and over again doesn’t work if the person doesn’t even know what confidence is or what it feels like.

The way all people, teens or adults, get confidence is by having accomplishments they can be proud of. It doesn’t have to be anything major. In fact, a person with low self-confidence probably needs to start small. Complete any task, get a great grade on a test or project, achieve something fitness related, resolve to talk to someone new, etc. Find something that is difficult for you, accomplish it, and enjoy the feeling.

Then, work towards bigger and better accomplishments. Some good examples are taking up an instrument, making a sports team, getting all As, acceptance into your favorite college, joining a fun club, getting a date with your crush, and so on. With each new accomplishment, you will feel more confident and able to accomplish more.

Sometimes the first step is the hardest. However, it’s worth it. Start small and begin racking up accomplishments. Then, shoot for your dreams. You never know what you can accomplish until you actually try.

Now Is The Time To Prepare For Summer

beach cartoon

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Have big summer plans? Maybe it’s going to the beach or you swear you’re finally going to get a boyfriend or girlfriend. Perhaps you’re going to get in shape at last and join a sports team. Regardless, since you have summer off, it’s a great time to actually work on achieving your non-academic goals. Yes, you should have those. So, if you haven’t set goals for your summer break, that’s your first step.

However, if you have any big plans for the summer, there is no reason to delay them until summer. You can either start doing them right now or laying the foundation so that your summer can be awesome.

For example, maybe you want to go to the beach with your family and friends and meet new people but you’re worried about your body. Well, now is the time to start working out and losing weight.

Perhaps you have decided that over the summer you want to try out for the football team or get involved in a play. Now is the perfect time to start practicing your football skills or taking acting lessons.

Whatever your plans or goals for the summer, if you truly want to achieve them, then it’s best if you start working towards them right now. That way, once summer comes and you try to start living your plans, you’ll be way ahead of the game and ready to succeed.

If Your Teen Is Single On Valentine’s Day

valentines hearts

Image courtesy of digitalart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Most parents are very well-meaning. They want to help their children as much as possible. However, one day that parents become clueless is around Valentine’s Day. They might not remember the angst, pain, and struggles that come from being a single teen around early February. If your teen child is single on Valentine’s Day, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Family Love Isn’t the Same

I was single on Valentine’s Day several times as a teen. And, family members always wanted to remind me how much they cared through gifts, cards, etc. I appreciated it and enjoyed the chocolates and other candies. But, it wasn’t the same. I was still depressed and candies from family just didn’t cut it.

Valentine’s Depression Is Real

It’s hard enough being a teen the other 364 days. But, that day of the year when you’re expected to have a significant other and be “in love” to fit in makes it even harder when you don’t live up to expectations. And, most teens don’t. If your son or daughter is single realize that if they seem down, it’s likely real.

You Can Help Your Child

You still can be helpful to your single child. While you don’t want to lecture or force anything, you can find ways to be supportive. For example, offer to help with a new wardrobe, take your teen on a trip, and so on. Also, if you know a nice boy or girl, ask your teen if he or she would like to be set up for a date. If you do this, make sure to ask first. No one wants to be set up with someone they don’t find attractive.

So, with Valentine’s Day coming up, if your child is single, make sure to handle it correctly. There is nothing worse than a well-meaning parent making a teen’s already bad experience worse!

Merry Christmas 2014

christmas wreath on wood

Image courtesy of Kittisak at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. In fact, it’s tomorrow! So, if you haven’t done your shopping, you’d better get on it (and hope your friends and family like what the stores have left). For many people Christmas is a great time of year with parties, friends, family, and presents.

That’s not the case for everyone. Sometimes people are lonely around the holidays or don’t have enough money to give or receive the gifts they want. If your holiday goal is being more popular, we’re here to help. Visit regularly and check out our book The Teen Popularity Handbook, as well.

If you’re a parent realize that your child likely wants to be popular, but it’s not like they teach it in school. It might be too late to order a physical copy for Christmas, but a Kindle copy makes a great, instant present.

Whatever your current predicament, we hope you have a great holiday season.

Merry Christmas from The Popular Teen!

Jonathan Bennett
David Bennett

The Worst Advice Your Parents And Teachers Can Give You Is…

thumbs upWhat I am about to say goes against virtually everything many of your parents, teachers, and friends tell you daily. They will probably tell you to avoid this article…but oh well…here goes…

So what is this common advice that I really can’t stand?

“Just be yourself.”

Your parents and friends mean well, as you probably do when you tell your friends the same thing. However, let’s think about this advice for a minute. Let me use this dialogue as an example.

You: “Mom, I can’t make any friends in this new school.”
Mom: “Just be yourself, honey; you will make friends!”

Sure, you don’t want your mom to start lecturing you about how horribly awkward you are, but let’s think through this advice of “be yourself” for a few minutes.

YOU can’t make friends.

YOU need social help.

YOU are frustrated, sad, and lonely.

Instead of being “yourself,” it sounds to me like you need to move beyond “yourself,” at least at that particular moment.

Your mom may have your best interest in mind. She is trying to affirm that you are all right as you are. And, that is a good thing. However, the better option would be for your mom to empathize with you (try to understand where you are coming from and acknowledge your feelings), but also provide you with some tools to help you actually make friends.

Personally, I don’t want to “be myself,” if I am fundamentally unhappy with who I am. There was a time when I was 50 pounds heavier, shy, awkward, depressed, and lonely. I am glad that I stopped “being myself” from that period.

“Just be yourself” encourages you to stay right where you are. If where you are is miserable, depressed, lonely, unhealthy, unfulfilled, etc, then guess what? You probably want to be somewhere else. Since you can’t be someone else, what can you do?

Stop being yourself at that moment, and become your best self.

Doing this right is a two-step process:

1. Stop Hating Yourself

If you aren’t where you are, and you want to improve, that is great. But, it doesn’t mean you need to shame or hate yourself. Acknowledge that you are valuable just because you are you. It sounds sappy, but if you hate yourself, you’ll never become your best self. It is like an artist hating the very paint and canvas he is using on his masterpiece. So, acknowledge that you are cool and worthy of respect from the start. Stop judging and shaming yourself and start you journey to a better place!

2. Focus on Making Slow and Positive Changes

After recognizing you have value and worth, now you can focus on becoming your best self.

The best methods of self-improvement are slow, positive (lead you to happy, safe, and healthy), and based on sound science.  If you are looking for something that fits the bill, you should *cough cough* check out our Teen Popularity Handbook.

For example, you can work on your shyness, practice meeting new people, overcome your fear of talking in groups, lose a pound a week, start running a few miles each week, etc.

Whatever you choose, becoming your best self is fun, exciting, and also challenging, but it is a good challenging, because you will work hard, but see great results from working hard.