One of the most important ways we can help our kids is to help them develop their autonomy, confidence and sense of self.

So much of our focus with our teenagers is trying to ensure they are ready for college. There is tremendous academic pressure coupled with the pressure to build an impressive resume.

We have good reason to believe that getting into the “right” college is the path to success – the path to a good job with high earning potential. The lifetime earning power of a college graduate continues to outpace non-degreed workers, but that is shifting.

The ROI on college is causing many of us to advise our children to take their time and have real clarity about their strengths, learning styles and future goals before taking on thousands, even hundreds of thousands, of dollars on a traditional degree. The stakes are much higher if you flounder than they were 20 or 30 years ago.

Careful self-exploration and career exploration will give your child a real edge in planning for their future.