Tell Your Child to Trust Themself!

student book cover

This time of year at Wow, we get busy working with students and talking to a lot of parents about gearing up for (and surviving!) college application season.

We’d like to share a favorite message we tell our own students at the beginning of every season (and many times during the writing process).

Trust yourself. This is your journey, so own the process.

When you are done, you will be a more confident, empowered writer, ready for college and your future.

We hope our message resonates with your family as you begin the college application process.  

We’ve been in this business for years. And we see a lot. One of the biggest challenges: You and your child are inundated with so much inaccurate and out-of-context information about admissions and the essay, your child may start to second guess themself. That won’t help you or them!

You can help them.

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Protect them a little bit from all that noise.

Cheer them on; help them feel good.


Talk to Your Child

Before your child starts prep work for any college essay, just talk to them.

Try a simple conversation that starts with a compliment from you.

Share with your child what you like about them (trait or characteristic, or remind them about a time they did something that made you proud, and point out what the trait is you see).

Next, tell them they have something important to share.

Tell them colleges want to hear what they have to say.

Make sure your child knows that to succeed, they must trust their own words, style, and voice.  

Tell them you trust them.  Remind them to trust themselves.

Every year, we work with students who tell us they cannot write; they don’t believe in themselves.

When that happens, we challenge them.

We ask, Can you think?

They always say yes.

We respond: Well, then, you can write.

Works like a charm. Every time.

If Your Child Can Think, They Can Write

The college essay is a thinking task as much as it is a writing task. And if your child can think, they can write.

There’s more about this, and other great tips for students and parents, in our book, How to Write an Effective College Application Essay: the Inside Scoop for Students, Second Edition. You can download a free copy here.

Feel free to share it with your friends. We even wrote a chapter just for parents!

Wishing your family a peaceful and successful journey to college.

At Wow, we know what colleges want. We provide students a simple, step-by-step process (See The Wow Method graphic below) for writing effective college essays, so they can stand out and tell their stories. Since 2009, we’ve been  transforming the college essay experience from daunting and frightening to calm and empowering.

We help students feel calm and in control as they learn how to master every type of application writing task. All of our packages include everything your child needs to complete every writing task for any type of school. The difference? The amount of one-on-one coaching and customization. Would you like to find out if we’re a match?  Learn more.

Picture of Kim Lifton

Kim Lifton

Kim Lifton is President of Wow Writing Workshop. Perceptive, resourceful and curious, Kim can get a story out of anyone. Kim is a former newspaper reporter and corporate communications manager. With Susan Knoppow, Wow’s CEO, Kim developed the Wow Method by combining her journalistic training with Susan’s organization and instructional design skills. She holds a BA in Journalism from Michigan State University. Kim’s articles on the college essay appear regularly in print and on the web, and her work has been featured in a variety of newspapers, magazines and online publications. Kim and Susan have co-authored three books – How to Write an Effective College Application Essay (The Inside Scoop for Parents, Students, Counselors). They are members/affiliates of the Michigan Association of College Admission Counseling (MACAC), the National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC), the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) and the Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA).
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