Tom Barthel Consulting

Do you know what the second simplest thing you can do for your teenager is?

Do you know a teenager with disappointing behavior?

Who is it that comes to mind? What’s their name? If it is someone else’s teen, you may feel opinionated. You may feel strongly about what should happen to set that person straight.
If the person that came to mind is your teenager, you may feel less opinionated and more lost. Lost at what to do next. You may have feelings of embarrassment & failure and a lack of hope for that teen that had so much potential but is now wasting away into drugs, bad behaviors, and lack of respect for anything that makes sense to you. You probably want this to stop right now and have them confront the truth of their behaviour.

You can make that happen. You can have your teen confront the truth and consequences of their own behaviour. Read this email, learn its message and put the tips provided into action.
If the person you thought of is someone else’s teen, take a small risk with your relationship and give those parents a call. Offer support and compassion, in whatever way that looks like to you, and forward them this email. Let them know that:

Drugs, alcohol, crime, dysfunction, laziness and no sense of direction are optional. Below is one step, in a proven direction.

If you are at all hesitant, give me a call and I will help you take that first step….

Parenting Tip For You


Do you want to know the difference between the two teenagers in the photos above? For one, the teenager on the right has parents that are panicking, stressed that their teenager’s life might get worse, and possibly trying to phone me at this moment. The teenager on the left has parents beaming with pride nearby, probably wondering what functional path into the future their son is going to choose.

Another difference is these happy parents might also be wondering how teens like the photo on the right were not able to figure it out and find a good footing in life. How hard can it be? After all, little Johnny did it. The unhappy parents of the teen on the right are probably wondering the same thing. It’s a common question people have.

It’s not long before lost, angry, lonely, and struggling teenagers find intoxication and immediate relief from negative feelings inside. This begins the world of drugs and teenagers. Possibly crime, self-harm and cutting, or the dreaded hiding in the basement with zero motivation to move out. Then it starts to happen to you as a parent, your racing heart, tight chest and increased breath rate as you imagine the worst possible outcomes for your teen, the seemingly unstoppable downward spiral your teenager begins into self destruction and incapability.

If you are going through this right now call now so I can assist you


If you are going through this right now call now so I can assist you

But the main difference between these two teens is something that teenagers themselves have revealed to me in the past. The troubled teenager doesn’t know how and doesn’t know what. They do not know how to sort out their thinking, what they are feeling, or what they really want. No one taught them either. It is a “Not know how” problem. It is not a self-esteem problem, nor a depression problem, nor a self harm problem, nor an addiction problem, and especially not a motivation problem.

You cannot motivate someone who does not know how to sort out their thoughts and feelings. If you try to motivate a teen who does not know how to sort through their thoughts and feelings you could easily drive them deeper into themselves until they hide in their bedrooms forever. Something else must be done first for any other symptom to be alleviated. It is to teach the teenagers the “know how” of sorting through their thoughts and feelings.

This is where you step in. You are going to create some conditioning in your teen. The solution is about ingraining problem solving habits and self-awareness techniques into your children very early in life, around 5 years old and up. After some time, it becomes a habit and kids become problem solvers. Then the downward spirals gets headed off in advance and as kids become teenagers they start to accumulate successes which snowballs them into adult hood. It works, it really does. Treatment centers use strategies such as these all the time, they just have to use them as a rescue process instead of a preventative one. Competence in problem solving and in self-awareness is the answer to troubled teen behavior.

The last newsletter was about a simple phrase that can be repeated to a teenager constantly when they have a complaint. That phrase was:

1. What are you going to do about it?

That is a great first step, yet it is only one part of a 3 step plan I will reveal to you. If your teen is already in a lot of trouble, it becomes an immediate necessity to say this to your teen daily, as part of your recovery plan for him or her.Let’s go to the 2nd step in this 3 part response that works miracles. When your teenager is complaining about something and has a big problem, and you have completed asking the above prior question, you then say:

2. So what do you want?

I know, it is shockingly simple is it not? I give all the credit for this punch line to my past public speaking mentor Michael Losier. This is his line that he used on me and his audiences for years. Then I looked to my own past. I remembered that my first psychologist asked me something similar to this question when I came to him and initially complained of delusions, hallucinations, and tried to commit suicide while on drugs at 22 years old. He asked me “Tom, what do you want by the time you are 30 years old? What steps have you taken to achieve that?”. With that psychologist’s support, some books from Chapters, and an AA group that helped me sort through problem solving, I was able to get off drugs. Then I got a job and a mortgage in 2 years, followed by my own rental properties 3 years after that. I also became a public speaker in highschools and helped many teenagers. I came a long way in a short period of time. Nowhere in there did I receive a direct lesson about self-esteem, or about anxiety, or a direct lesson on how to grow up. I did however end up with a self esteem, a big one at that. I did end up getting relief from anxiety, and I did end up growing up. I ended up with a big enough self esteem to lead many other youth out of a troubled life by becoming a public speaker. Teaching me to become a strong problem solver was the best thing those adults in my life could have done for me at that time. You can do this for your teenager too.

Click here to read about

A parent who got the above strategy to work

What are you going to do about it?

So what do you want?

This is what you are likely to experience if you do:

  • A tremendous adventure as you square off with our teenager about answering these questions. They will most likely get mad and maybe even storm out of the room. A little drama never hurt anybody.
  • A sigh of relief in your body when your teenager begins to figure out small problems at first.
  • A burning feeling of pride in your chest when your teenager takes on bigger wants, bigger desires, and solves bigger problems.
  • More free time as your teenager pushes you out of the way because you are old and uncool, and he or she pursues the objects of their interests and desires without you.
  • A little bit of worry when their ambitions do not always look like medical school and well respected universities. Perhaps a lot of worry when they aspire to become a rock star.
  • A sense of peaceful satisfaction. When your teenager or young adult child comes home in a car they bought, with a career they built, and their own home that you can visit them in.

For parents with teens who recover from drugs and crime and become prosperous. The relief is indescribable.

If you or a parent you know could use the feelings above


Call now, I will teach you how to get those results.

This step, combined with the 3rd portion of this 3 step process, will be plenty effective to change the direction of your teenager’s life. If your teen requires quite a bit more in terms of treatment and therapy you will also need a solid action plan on paper to address the rest of their needs. You could even draft an action plan on paper to make them attend therapy and treatment. Full action plans are just what is needed to fully turn a teenager around from their troubles. You cannot count entirely on 2 catch phrases on your fridge to provide a full recovery.

Dropping your teen off to a counsellor’s office after they have started cutting themselves or using drugs does not really work either. Counsellors are great until they return the teenager to the home where the original problem started. Counsellors know they cannot be a fulltime force in a teenager’s life and it frustrates them. A home can be a fulltime force in a teenager’s life. Home is where a lot of the answers are and you are the biggest answer to your teenager’s needs.

Put the below document up in your home:

So What Do I Do Now?

  1. Take down the poster you put on your fridge from my last parenting tip.
  2. Print off the poster attached to the link below. Fasten it to your fridge.
  3. Then repeat both phrases regardless of the size of your teenager’s complaint.
  4. Refuse to continue the conversation until they answer.
  5. Watch your teenager learn.
  6. Steer your teenager away from drugs, troubles, and lethargy.
Click here for a

Complaint Department For Your Fridge

You would be surprised what an intense dose of this question will do to somebody. I should know. I was a much bigger drug dealer and user than your teenager is and this strategy worked wonders on me.

D.B. Rocky Mtn. House.

Call Today

Get the behavior you want from your child.

I will teach you how to train the skills you want into your teen.

I will do it with you, and in extreme cases I can do it for you.

I have templates, resources, and real-life examples you can model.

Let’s talk.

Click Here

Get the behavior you want from your child.


I will teach you how to train the skills you want into your teen.

I will do it with you, and in extreme cases I can do it for you.

I have templates, resources, and real-life examples you can model.

Let’s talk.

Call here


For a quick response

P.S. If you know another parent who is struggling, call me now. Tell me about them. I can help you get them started in a new direction. 403-391-4184.


Tom Barthel