Podcast Ep. 69 – A Flight Plan for Life

Larry Olsen September 28, 2021

We all have a lot to learn about what we can offer our younger generation, especially in mastering self discovery and allowing them to successfully find and activate their life purpose. 87% of 16 to 29 year olds feel they have no purpose or meaning in life and my guests Greg and Beth Langston, the founders of College Flightplan, decided to do something about that. They realize that none of us have to feel bad about making bad decisions, it doesn’t define a person’s worth. Knowing the importance of our self worth and assisting others in finding theirs, is what Beth and Greg are all about. To find out more, go to: https://collegeflightplan.com/


Larry Olsen: Welcome. I’m Larry Olsen, and what’s on your mind? Once set, it delivers your life. To change the outcomes we want, we must change the plays we’re running. Join us at Mindset Playbook with Real people – Real talk for Real insight.

Narrator: Today’s episode is sponsored by Aperneo, An Achievement Acceleration Company, whose approach to professional development enables clients to gain insights and perspectives to live, work, and engage with more success.


Larry Olsen: I want to welcome everybody mindset playbook. Thank you for taking the time out of your life to invest it in new ideas and actually things that you can take action on. And I know that you’re going to find a lot of value in what you’re going to hear today. So, thanks again for tuning in. My guests today are the founders of College Flight plan. They developed College Flight Plan to empower students to master their self-discovery, allowing them to successfully activate their life purpose.  We’ll learn much more about that. But first, let me introduce our guests today to discuss this fascinating project. Beth Langston graduated from Purdue University and is an expert essay editor with a proven track record of helping students navigate the dreaded college applications essay process with tremendous success and kudo, Beth, having five children and going through the whole process, I could have used your help along the way, I’m telling you. My co guest today is Greg Langston. The commonality of the name tells you everything you need to know. He is a graduate of Purdue’s Krannert School of Business and is an expert in building high performance teams across ten different industries. He built and led businesses of over a billion dollars and has worked in over sixty-five countries. So, you’ll find that together amazing things are happening by their own collaboration. You two are about the importance of purpose in all of our lives. But so, few of us have actually articulated to ourselves or others our own purpose. Why is that so important in our lives and why have the two of you made this your life’s work?


Greg Langston [00:02:48] Well, first of all, Larry, it’s a pleasure to be here on the show with you and to be able to share with your audience the reason we have made this our purpose, to help students empower them to master their self-discovery so that they can successfully activate their life’s purpose. Those words are choose chosen very carefully, because when we had our students, our kids, there was nothing like this. When I got into high school and out of high school, I got no training. I was not trained on how to use finance, how to save, how to set goals effectively. I was an athlete and so I would learn my athletic goals, but we did not learn any of this. And so, you know, it might be interesting, if Beth would describe the journey that we went on and how we came to develop this process, because I think it’s pretty interesting.


Beth Langston [00:03:36] Yes. And did you know, Larry, first of all, thank you for having us. We are (Larry Olsen: You’re welcome) to be here. And the statistic is, is it 87% of 16 to 29 year old’s feel they have no purpose or meaning in life? How sad is that? (Larry Olsen: Yeah, it’s tragic.) You know, this is so needed. And so, we realize this a long time ago. So, we raised our children overseas. By the time our son was 13, he had been to 12 schools in five different countries. And it was a great experience. You know, they got to learn foreign language. We have a son and a daughter. So, he’s the oldest. So, he was our main guinea pig. But we got they got to learn foreign language. We all did. We gained a great appreciation for other cultures and nationalities, like when we lived in Singapore. The Singapore American School had seventy-six nationalities represented in K through 12. It was amazing. Yeah, it was like a little United Nations. So, and as an educator, I was very involved in all their schooling, and we had to be very flexible. Sometimes we would home school out of need when we lived in Australia there on a whole different school year. So sometimes we had to homeschool to get ready for that next year. In Mexico, our kids were the only English speakers in their whole school. So, they would come home from school, and we would spend two to four hours with the Spanish English Dictionary in one hand and their homework in the other. And we would plow through it, but we’d get it done. Kids are so capable of doing so much more than we ask of them, and we even had a school in our home and everything, but we knew we needed to return to the U.S. by the time they were in late middle school or high school, because we wanted them to have every opportunity to prepare for the college application process, which we figured was involving lots of self-discovery, lots of knowing about your strengths. But we were so disappointed there was nothing available in the States either. They couldn’t learn their weaknesses, their values. I mean, we could work with them. But Greg, as an executive, on the other hand, he was running these large businesses and he was provided with hours of wonderful executive training and coaching to equip him with leadership skills and team player skills, everything he needed to be a good leader. And he kept saying, why did I have to wait twenty years for this and why is nobody teaching this to our high schoolers? Why, why? Why? So, with my educational background and his executive background, we developed tools that we used on our own children


Greg Langston [00:06:30] We’re our guinea pigs and we didn’t break them. They’ve actually done pretty well.


Beth Langston [00:06:34] Yeah. So, we started to have workshops in the area with area schools and children and everybody was getting great results. We saw transformations in these kids in the areas of clarity and knowing their values and strengths and confidence and being able to express that and articulate that in interviews and in the application process. And they felt like they had to control a bit more control over their lives because they had actionable plans and goals. And we love it. We love what we do, and we love seeing the benefits for these great kids.


Larry Olsen [00:07:11] You know, maybe you can kind of bust a little bit of a myth, I think. And that is people talk about the fact that you can’t really talk long term goals with young children because of frontal lobes, where we do our reasoning haven’t fully formed till twenty-three to twenty-six years of age. And yet we’re finding that that doesn’t seem to be the case and it couldn’t be the case or what you folks are doing wouldn’t really have any traction to it. So, can we be in the goal setting? Can we be looking long range, you know, with these young people? And having it be effective.


Greg Langston [00:07:51] We certainly can in the way we’ve chosen to do it is we start with where they are in terms of, I don’t want to talk aspirational goals, I don’t want to direct anything towards you. Just let’s just talk about what you’ve accomplished so far in your life in one of four areas, your health, your wealth, your wisdom, and your relationships. And so, what we do is we help them identify what is something that they’ve accomplished and that basically gets the flywheel moving. So, there’s the flywheel effect that they’ve accomplished something. And then we take them through a snippet, one at a time and kind of layer the learnings so that they can establish what are after they go through the rest of the self-discovery process, what are their goals that need to be smart goals relative to specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time bound. We teach them that process so that they establish what their goals will be in those forced success elements when they’re 65 years old and they develop five for each one. And we say, you know what the beauty of this is? You will be able to review these on an annual basis and for the next five years, you will review those with your parents at dinner time or excuse me, at in December and you go to dinner, and they pay for dinner for the next five years. And then from the sixth year on, you need to pay for that dinner as you’re reviewing your goals because you’re going to be having more success than most people many times your age. And so, we actually empower the student to establish their own goals that are aspirational goals for the lifetime. Then as part of the process, they say, OK, to make those a reality, what are my five-year goals and what are my one-year goals?


Larry Olsen [00:09:34] Gotcha!  You know, something that that takes place, and this is has a lot to do with what occurs in all of our lives as you’re getting these individuals with habits that aren’t necessarily in their own best interest, because this is the first time that you’ve come into play. And we know that habits are ingrained, their subconscious more than difficult to break, even though I’m sure that you have found ways to do that. How have you assisted people in adjusting these habits to the point where they are self-productive and as opposed to self-destructive?


Beth Langston [00:10:16] “Stop, start and continue”


Greg Langston [00:10:17] Right. One of the things that we do is as you take them through the mental exercise of saying these are my aspirational goals and this is what life is going to be from a health, wealth, wisdom, and relationship perspective, you kind of put them in a mindset that says this is all that I’ve accomplished. And then you flip the table, and you say, you know, what are some things that I’m doing today that are not contributing positively to those goals? And invariably, two things come to mind. One is social media. (Larry Olsen: Ok), and number two is not getting enough sleep. And so, we therefore say, OK, the way to address that is instead of saying “stop doing that”, there’s a I learned many years ago from a consultant, I guess that’s part of the 600000 dollars of executive coaching training that that I received to approach a problem with the following three questions. One is, what should we continue doing that supports where we’re trying to go once you. And that’s very empowering. And the young person or an old person can say, yeah, I’m going to continue to do this in order to be successful. So, what should I start doing that I’m not doing yet in order to improve my lot in life or my goals? And then they write that down. That can be a little bit more painful, if you will, like I’m not doing this. I’m not sleeping or I’m not studying or I’m not doing whatever the case may be. And then what is it that I should stop doing that I’m currently doing, which drives a little deeper? And what that does, any student, whether you’re 15 or 50, you can understand those three questions. And the thing that about our process and whatever process any family goes through in self-discovery, you need to consider this, come alongside your student, come alongside your friend, whoever it might be, and approach them where they are and not dictate where you’re coming from. Because I was a doctor, you should be a doctor. I was a dentist. Everybody’s a dentist. You should all be dentists. That is not productive.


Larry Olsen [00:12:18] Beautiful. You know, another thing I think that you’ve shared, but I’d like you to talk a little more about it is all of these questions are relative to and you used the word aspiration, so I can do all the social media and not get any sleep, because it’s all relative to what I’m attempting to accomplish, which typically is to get by to get my parents off my back or, you know, to some somehow succeed, whatever that may be. Now, you talk a lot about and the things I’ve read about a sense of purpose. And that purpose is a part of what drives the aspiration for my understanding. When does that kind of come into play? I mean, is that the beginning conversation when you’re talking about what have you accomplished? Is that leading into the what would you like to accomplish?


Greg Langston [00:13:15] Very good question. What we do is in order to drive the most.


Beth Langston [00:13:25] Productive outcome.


Greg Langston [00:13:28] Let me start that again in order to drive the most productive outcome, we find that you need to layer the learnings in a very specific sequence. And so what we start with are your personal core values. And it’s extremely important to have your core values clear in your mind. And if I can give your audience a visual, consider a cutaway of a very large tree. And underground, you have the root system, which are your values. Those that root system holds up the tree trunk, which is the purpose, and the trunk holds up the branches, which are your goals and objectives in the fruit of all your efforts. And so in order for us to go through and address the purpose question that you ask, you have to first and foremost address your core values and understand and test which ones are yours. And so we take the student through the process of selecting one of their primary values, then what are their core values? And then they begin to identify why they’re important and what they should “start, stop and continue” doing relative to each one of those values to really make them their own. And the value of that is that no doubt in life, parents, students alike are going to go through storms and they’re going to have challenges. And if you don’t have a strong root system and there’s a storm, you’re going to get pushed over. The tree is going to go over. If you have a strong root system, the tree is going to stay there and remain. And the same is true for your values in terms of if my value is love or integrity and I’m making decisions, are they going and violating against that value? The decision? If it is, then I should stop. If it’s not, then I should continue.  And so that then builds upon understanding what your strengths and weaknesses are so that they go through a process where they do a 360 and they get 200 data points of information from up to eight trusted advisers. And one of them is an accountability partner that’s going to help them through the process, which basically say, these are my strengths, these are my weaknesses. I shouldn’t do this. These are the ways that I add value to other people. This is one, two or three majors that I think you should select or profession. In some cases, students don’t want to go to college and the trusted advisers can confirm that and save everybody a lot of money in English. They get that information. They get 200 data points of information. They then do another assessment, which is what we call a Kolby Cognitive assessment, where they determine their instinctive problem-solving skills. I’m going to get the purpose in a second, but you can see the layering effect with that information that they have. They develop their distinct natural abilities statement or their DNA, which is their wheelhouse in terms of young people don’t know necessarily what their strengths are. But having articulated everything that I have, they clearly understand these are my values. These are my strengths. This is how I solve problems. So when they’ve crafted this paragraph that says this is what I do really well, so when they’re asked to volunteer for something in school or at work or for a club, they know they can volunteer for something that they’ll do really, really well. And so armed with that information, then you can set your purpose statement. Your why? Because what are they, their high school students? How do they do that? They study, they get good grades, and they do social media, and they play sports. The question is, why do they get up in the morning and why are they doing this? And that’s what they don’t know. But armed with all the information we’ve just described, they’re in a much better position to develop their purpose. Sort of a long-winded response. But I wanted to get you there.


Larry Olsen [00:17:04] I’m sure most of our listeners are saying, where were you or why wasn’t this something that I had to be able to deal with and have as a tool? Because it’s invaluable. I mean, most of us discovered our values at making bad decisions or some people as incarceration.  Others they found out that they were top of the class. And regardless of the outcome, they weren’t really necessarily aware. Had anybody taken them through what is really driving this? What am I good at? Instead of most of our education is redlined as to what’s wrong. And so, we grow up knowing what we’re really well at, what’s wrong in our lives. And we don’t always get the other than just study harder or work harder. And it just is it’s it has really, it’s empty. And a lot of the accomplishments people make, they don’t they only last a little while. The feeling that they’ve been looking for from that sense of accomplishment. And what you two are doing is you’re making the moment important and that’s where we all live. And that’s the answer that I got from you as to not even concerning yourself with the frontal lobes for crying out loud, because you’re taking these people and you said it so beautifully, you’re starting them where they are now. I’m sure that the road that you two have been on since you got back into the States and started this project has had a few ups and downs. And one of the things that I like people to share with us in Mindset Playbook is did you have any setbacks? And if so, what plays did you use in hindsight to see yourself moving beyond that, not being stalled by it?


Beth Langston [00:19:03] I think one of our sort of setbacks would be that parents don’t realize that they need to start early with this self-discovery process and they don’t even realize that it’s important. Many I mean, there are some great parents out there that are already doing this with their children


Larry Olsen [00:19:23] Or they weren’t educated that way.


Beth Langston [00:19:24] Right. And, you know, when we meet at the end of our course that our students give us a summary report to their parents and their accountability partner, and the parents are always so shocked and thrilled that what they’re discovering about their students and they’re always saying to your point before that they wish they would have had that 20 years ago. And do we do this for parents? Parents can take our course to it, and they just wouldn’t be doing the college application process afterwards or the interview process for a job or a career that doesn’t require a college education. But I think that was one of our main it’s hard to get the word out that we need to start early. People just don’t know, and they don’t know that we’re available sometimes. But when they find out, they’re very excited about it. What do you think?


Greg Langston [00:20:22]  I would agree. And I’d say personally, you know, as you’re working through a career with lots of different companies, sometimes things don’t go as you expect and, you know, stuff happens. And I have my three personal values, which are integrity, love, and excellence. And I have my three corporate values, which are integrity, unique positive experience, and operational excellence. And the reason I say unique, positive experience is that I want everybody who interfaces with my company or the companies that I was working with to have a unique, positive experience, not unique negative experience, but a unique, positive experience. And so even when I was having those setbacks, I would not violate my integrity. I would not violate my aspect of excellence, because life is a journey and it’s a process. And so basically, I’ve been applying my own teaching that Beth has helped me to create on my life, on myself, because I want to create a legacy that I’m very proud of in my legacy is the woman sitting right next to me and the kids that we have and the influence that we have on other students.  And as I mentioned to you earlier, before we started the conversation with school systems that are saying we need this because we do not have the social, emotional learning skills in the curriculums today and this program provides it.


Beth Langston [00:21:53] And we also sorry to interrupt, Larry we also have our students face their mistakes. You know, what have you learned? We asked them to write down mistakes they’ve made. What have you learned? What should you have done differently? Because life is full of mistakes. They’re not failures. If you give up, it’s a failure. But we all make mistakes. And how could you have had a better outcome? What have you learned about yourself as a result of this mistake? You know, and how does it feel to discuss this mistake? So, we try to bring all those things out in them also.


Larry Olsen [00:22:28] Those are great life skills that all of us should be practicing. You know, you talked about one of your values, Greg is being, you know, the excellent side. And I notice you didn’t say perfection because what I see that’s so wonderful about what you two are doing is you’re allowing the errors in the mistakes to be a part of the growth process instead of a labeling process. And I think that’s where education is, is not done it on purpose, but has been designed to show us where we’re making our errors. And in what you folks are doing is looking at those learning experiences and giving people the opportunity to talk about it instead of being shamed by it. And this is so refreshing to hear what it is that you’re up to. I’d love to become a part of that with you. I mean, if you ever need someone to come in and give you a hand, you know, give me a call, because this.(Beth Langston: Oh! Thanks!)


Greg Langston [00:23:26] and vice versa.


Larry Olsen [00:23:27] (Beth Langston: Yes, that’s wonderful.) It’s just right up there. I mean, it’s just wonderful stuff. Now, another thing that that I wanted you to talk a little bit about, and you’ve kind of talked about it without identifying it, is that, you know, genetics plays a great deal of who we are. But when it comes down to our ability to be successful, it’s little less than 18 percent. The rest is learned behavior, which we call attitude and attitude, has 100% effect on someone’s performance. So, it doesn’t kind of effect it. It dominates it. Where do you see attitude coming into play in the ability for someone who has not articulated their own sense of purpose, has not really taken a look at how deep these roots are or their core values are to sustain that purpose, let alone do they have any limbs growing out of the tree other than to get through the day or through the week. Where does attitude play in the success of the people that you’re working with? And how do you folks deal with it when you get someone who well, I don’t know what I want, I don’t. I mean, a lot of parents. How was your day? “Fine”. And instead of asking him what do you mean by fine? Tell me a little bit about. Fine, they’re just stalemated because what you folks are offering, they haven’t been able to utilize yet or even been exposed to. So, share with us a little bit about the importance of attitude.


Greg Langston [00:25:04] Well, that’s a that’s a very deep and heavy question, particularly in light of 2021, when one’s attitude is driven in large measure by your social media feed and what you’re looking at and what you’re listening to and the scrolling up of the next TikTok or the next Instagram influencer or what have you. And so, I believe that young people today get desensitized, and they visualize themselves in comparison to this vision of perfection, of these curated images that the Instagram influencers spend a lot of time and money putting together. And for every Instagram influencer, there are billions of people on the planet that are not. And so, they’re measuring themselves versus perfection. And I call perfection a mental construct. And it is something that you’re never going to be able to achieve. And it’s similar to getting in an airplane and flying towards the horizon. As you fly towards the horizon, it keeps going away and keeps going further and keeps going for the you never achieve that. And so what we encourage our students to do is once they’ve established, hey listen, what have you accomplished today so far or this month or this year, what is something tangible that you’ve accomplished in your health, wealth, wisdom and relationships? Now, let’s see, what did you accomplish in the last 24 hours versus one of those goals? Because that is measurable and that’s not a social media feed. That’s a listen, I slept for one more hour than I normally did. That is progress, not perfection. And I, I used to be a perfectionist and I grew up with a perfectionist. I can recall vividly when my dad was writing a letter to interviewing for another job. And this was when they had typewriters and he would not use White-Out because he felt that White-Out was  not perfect enough. He had to do the whole letter, the whole resume, without a blemish. And so I found that to be not productive. I think perfection. I’m looking for progress, not perfection.


Larry Olsen [00:27:17] Excuse me a moment, I flashed on the fact in grade school I was going to go out and play and my mom wanted to know what was I thinking to go out before my jeans were ironed


Larry Olsen [00:27:37] What’s that got to do with anything? You know, I made sure my jeans got ironed. And I mean, you can see where it comes from. It’s not that it was my mom’s fault. It was again, what we continue to get passed down. And one of the things that we continue to pass down if we’re not getting educated by the two of you in your program is we continue to pass down this lack of examination and of questioning of, so we get caught up in the media. We get caught up in this endless wanting. That doesn’t give us any feedback. You know, Kurt Vonnegut, feedback’s breakfast of champions. And, you know, it’s positive feedback. It’s not what’s wrong. So, I love that perfection element and that you are into progress. So, I apologize for the digression there.


Beth Langston [00:28:36] No, I was going to say, and you can as if we’re aware parents, we can recognize these traits of perfectionism in our children. I remember our daughter when she was just learning to write letters, ABC, the alphabet, and she would do one. And it wasn’t perfect. She’d tear the page off. And I recognized right away, oh, boy. So, we talk about it. I’m like, well, they’re not ever going to be perfect. Look at Mom’s handwriting. It’s awful to see you got better. But to this day, she has beautiful handwriting. I would love to have her handwriting, but she just wanted it to be perfect in that way. But we all deal with that, I think, in areas of our life. And we just have to recognize it and address it and talk about it with these kids. You know.


Greg Langston [00:29:20] If I can just add one little story I can remember, I was wanting one company and we had the windbreaker, you know, the wind shirts. And I like the motto, often, pleased, never satisfied, often pleased, never satisfied and. Somebody in the airplane seat behind me said, what’s that? We were getting off the plane, I go, that’s my motto. She goes, Was that what? Why? And I said, Well, that’s the company motto. She says, I don’t want to work for that company. And she said, who thought of that? I said, I did. And she said, why would you want that? I said, well, I’m often pleased, but I think that we can continuously get better no matter where we are. You know, God’s gifted us with tremendous skills, and we just need to make sure that we are expanding our horizons and our experience using our scar tissue of life to go to the next accomplishment. And so, I’m a pretty driven guy and I just think you don’t need to go with perfection. You just need to look and see each and every day how you can get better than you were the day before.


Beth Langston [00:30:31] And when we tell the students this and if they come with an attitude of, oh, I can’t do this, you know, because I you have to be perfect to do it, it’s sort of frees them up. Oh, yeah, OK. I can do better than I did yesterday. And their attitudes, as you were saying before, tend to change as they get deeper into the process of self-discovery because they they’re getting to know themselves. It’s just a beautiful transformation. It really is.


Larry Olsen [00:30:58] Yeah. And then they’re developing new habits without having to develop the habits first. Because to do it right, you’ve got to have the vision. You’ve got to have the purpose, the outcome, the values. And then everything kind of goes in alignment with that as opposed to how should I behave. (Greg Langston: Right). And that’s where you folks are so unique. You’re not you’re not working on behavior because, you know, behaviors an outcome of how we’re aligning ourselves with what our perception of life is and what our values are and what is bigger than life itself. And these are really, really powerful elements that you are bringing to the party. Kudos, kudos to both of you!


Beth Langston [00:31:40] Thanks.  We thank. We wish every kid in America, every high schooler could go through this. Just if we could give it to him, we’d give it to him. It’s just such a benefit for them.


Larry Olsen [00:31:50] Yeah. (Greg Langston: And I’d rather sell it to him). That’s the other “P”, pragmatist.


Greg Langston [00:31:58] That’s right. That’s right.


Larry Olsen [00:32:00] So what do you what do you two most excited about right now. What is what is when you wake up in the morning, what is it that’s really, you know, exciting because you’ve gone through a lot, you’ve traveled a lot. Your children are blessed to be able to have such exposure to such a variety of cultures that it gives one the opportunity to not take everything at face value. And, you know, in the United States it’s powerful country, a wonderful country. It’s still a little superficial sometimes on what it tries to put out there for people because we’re a consumer driven or, you know, that’s what capitalism is all about. We have to buy. And if we don’t buy, then companies go out of business. But there’s so much more than that. And so, what are you excited about now?


Beth Langston [00:32:50] We’re always excited about how we can wake up and make a difference. We just want to make a difference. Kids do, too. They want to belong somewhere, and they want to know that they can make a difference. And that’s what


Greg Langston [00:33:02] They want to be guided in so that they understand what are their unique abilities, their distinct natural abilities that only they possess. And what that does is that provides the transformation that Beth was saying, because then at the end of the process, they present to their parents, this is what my values are. These are my strengths. These are my goals. This was my major is going to be this is what I want for my career. Mom and dad, are you on board with this? And let’s assume previously the father was a doctor. The mother was a doctor. Aunts and uncles were doctors. The pre the presumption is that Greg is going to be a doctor. But if Greg can come back and say with the report out that Beth was mentioning mom and Dad, I know you want me to be a doctor, but I would suck at being a doctor. However, based upon your feedback and everybody else, I would be a great engineer, in fact, a biomedical engineer. And that’s my passion. I want to help people to be able to have limbs that are not working, to be able to create something that allows everybody to walk properly. That can be something that’s compelling. In fact, as I’m telling you, that I’m getting goosebumps. So, you wonder how do we get excited? We’re very passionate about this because this works. We’ve seen it in kids. We’ve seen accountability partners weep, parents weep when their kids are telling them this is what I’m going to do with the rest of my life as compared to, hey, how is that course and how a school. Oh, fine. Yeah, great. Here they’re forced. Forced is a strong word. But here, part and parcel to the to the program is they need to explain to their parents and their accountability partner, what makes them universally unique, universally unique? I never used that before, but unique in the universe as well as how do they apply this information for completing their college application essays in the United States? Because they’ve done all the work to be able to create compelling application essays.


Larry Olsen [00:34:59] That’s fantastic. We lived in Houston for a few years and next-door neighbor, we invited, Diane, invited him over for dinner and she always liked to invite people that we didn’t know and get together. And I was always a little uncomfortable about it until they left. And she goes, well, what do you think? Oh, they were amazing. Aren’t you glad I invited them over to dinner? And anyway, I’d take credit for her genius, but the one guy was an anesthesiologist, and I said, wow. I said, that must be amazing being an anesthesiologist. You have these people’s whole lives in your hands. He goes, I hate it. I go, you hate it? And I go, well, why are you doing it? Because my grandfather was an anesthesiologist. My dad was an anesthesiologist. I had no choice.


Beth Langston [00:35:52] Seventy percent of people do not enjoy their professions.


Larry Olsen [00:35:58] Yeah, yeah, you know, at Gallup studies on engagement, I mean, it’s just people are leaving. This pandemic gave everybody the opportunity to kind of do a little self, you know, a little introspection and go, do I really want to do this anymore? And I think that your information is as valuable to an adult, even if they’re not going to go to college. They need to find out what their sense of purpose is and what drives them and what’s important so that they have meaning in their life. And how important do you folks think it is to have meaning in your life?


Greg Langston [00:36:36] I think I just read something about that yesterday and in doing the juxtaposition between meaning and purpose, meaning has to do with looking through the rearview mirror as to how you felt in the past. And how something made you feel? Which then should use those feelings to transition into your purpose, which is aspirational for the future. What are you going to do with your future, which is your purpose? And so, I thought that was an interesting description in terms of the difference between meaning and purpose. You know, I’ll give you I’ll give you another interesting quote that I think is pretty important relative to purpose, Mark Twain says that there are two days, the most important two days in your life are the day you are born. And then they you find out why


Larry Olsen [00:37:30] Yeah and that beautiful. That is so beautiful. You know, he also said what he loves so much about the truth was he didn’t have to try to remember what it was he said.


Beth Langston [00:37:41] So true.


Larry Olsen [00:37:42] And I think that that’s what you folks are doing, is you’re providing the truth so conversations can be had. I don’t have to feel ashamed that I didn’t do my homework. I don’t have to feel bad that I was on social media all day long because now I found something that’s more important. And if I am on social media, I look at it completely different. It doesn’t define me because now I have defined myself. And that’s what you’re doing for people. You know, I always believe define yourself or others will. And you folks are really assisting these young people and old people. Doesn’t matter. It’s not an age thing. It’s it’s a sense of. You know, one thing that that you folks are saying is that. You know, we all have a purpose, and our purpose is we’re going to make a difference. And the question we have to ask ourselves is what kind of a difference are we making? And this is why your work is so valuable, because you’re getting people to decide for themselves, not other people deciding for them. You’re taking them through an array of stimuli and information that begins to let them know what they’re good at and what where they can succeed. And if they still have passion for something else, what are the tools? I need to be able to excel and be good at that as well.


Beth Langston [00:39:05] And also getting hands on experience in different professions like our son is a great example. His whole life, he thought he wanted to go in the medical field and then as he got older, I think I want to be a surgeon. So, he interned in one of his high school summers with a cardiovascular surgeon and a neurosurgeon. And at the end of the summer, he came out and said, that is not what all at all what I want to do. I don’t like that at all. And he studied finance at school. He went


Greg Langston [00:39:40] and saved a decade and a ton of money by and by not taking that other curriculum


Larry Olsen [00:39:45] or being my neighbor in Houston, huh?


Beth Langston [00:39:47] Yes. And we just want the kids to be the best you can be because everyone else is taken who said that somebody else is quote, but I love it.


Greg Langston [00:39:57] (Larry Olsen: That’s excellent.) I think all of us want to have clarity in life and we’re searching for it, unfortunately, through search social media and its pretty numbing effect. But as we’ve discussed already in this conversation, if you have personal clarity, you then can begin to say, hey, listen, if this is important to me, you can very pragmatically say, I don’t want to do three sports. If I want to study to do this, I don’t have time to study to do three sports because I’m not going to be a professional athlete in all three sports. But I do have a love for this one sport. And so, you can choose to deselect certain activities in certain sports, which frees you up because you only have 24 hours, regardless of what everybody says to do X, Y and Z. And it provides them with a sense of prioritization so that they can know where they spend their time and where they don’t spend their time and what they do too actively what’s urgent versus what’s important. And that’s something else that’s very important for a student to learn.


Larry Olsen [00:40:57] Beautiful, beautiful with it. Time has flown by this, literally. I, I know that everybody who’s listening to this has found this fascinating. How do they reach out to you folks, whether they’re a school system or whether they want to get their children involved? How do they go about doing that?


Beth Langston [00:41:18] They can find us at collegeflightplan.com, and they can email me, call me. My number’s on in the site. Beth@collegeflightplan.com or Greg@collegeflightplan.com


Greg Langston [00:41:34] And also for your audience. We’ve prepared a special document. It’s called a Parent Starter Kit to Teen Self Discovery. And it has a bunch of statistics, early actions the parents can take to help the students get through free assessments, ACT, SAT, prep information, a whole bunch of stuff that’s in that document. And they can go to collegeflightplan.com/guide to get that collegeflightplan.com/guide.


Larry Olsen [00:42:05] OK, well, we’ll have that up on the on the site so they can see it as well as hear it from you. And so. Well, it’s been a true pleasure. And I want to thank both of you for taking the time and using your time to make life a lot better for the young people in our lives and for all of us, no matter what our age. You’ve really made a difference, and this has been a real blessing. Thank you to four for being here today.


Beth Langston [00:42:32] Well, thank you. Thank you, Larry. We appreciate you.


Larry Olsen [00:42:35] (Greg Langston: Absolutely) Thank you. Thank you. And all the best to you out there. And again, remember, where do you need to be to make things happen in your life and you’ll find out exactly where you are right now. So once again, thanks for tuning in. I look forward to our next opportunity and make sure that you reach out to Beth and Greg and all the phenomenal work they’re doing. Take care until next time.


Narrator: Thank you for listening. If you’ve enjoyed this episode, we ask that you please subscribe and share with your friends and associates. Larry’s next guest, Hannah Williams’s, story began in a blue pickup truck when her father handed 12-year-old Hannah the phone and asked her to close a deal on an investment property. She closed the deal and ultimately enrolled in college at age 14 and graduated with a degree in international business by 18 and published her first book at 23. Join Larry and Hannah to discover the power and insight we can all learn from the GenZ generation. The best is here and yet to come.


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