Here to inspire. Although you may know him as Joe from the PopTV sitcom This has just arrived, Jesse LeBeau has had an even greater impact in his role as a mentor.
The 35-year-old actor-turned-motivational speaker is best known as “The Celebrity Teen Coach.” Us weekly.
As he says, LeBeau’s love of basketball originally inspired him to become a self-help coach. Despite being just 5ft 7, the Alaskan native defied all odds and became a basketball trickster. His skills led him to travel and play streetball alongside his childhood hero. Allen Iverson, where he observed young fans lining up to chat with the team. “What I learned from that was that kids just wanted an adult to take care of them and be interested in them,” says LeBeau Us.
Enlightened by his experience with youth around the world, LeBeau later founded the non-profit organization The Attitude Is Everything Foundation, where he speaks in schools about pressing issues facing teenagers today. In his opinion, the most important aspect of helping younger generations build a solid foundation is to empower them: “If you can boost their confidence and self-esteem, you can impact every other area of their lives.”
First, LeBeau explains, you should use failures strategically—“see failures not as mistakes but as feedback and help them see that everyone fails”—and teach resilience. “We want to encourage kindness,” explains LeBeau, “but often when [teenagers] Out of school and into the real world, the world isn’t always kind.”
AThe result: “They have to learn to be resilient and have courage so that they can stand on their own two feet,” he continues. “We want them to be independent, strong young adults.”
Get the job done and be proud of wins, no matter how small. “The best way to gain confidence is to achieve things,” he says Us. “Whether it’s big or small things – if you work hard or get a better grade on this test than last time – you know you deserve it.”
LeBeau also has good advice for parents: be empathetic. “I’m old school and a lot of times I want to go, you know, your grandparents came to this country with a dollar in their pocket, eight kids and going through a major depression and you’re mad because you didn’t get enough likes up Your TikTok video,” he laughs. But: “The hardest thing you’ve ever been through is the hardest thing you’ve ever been through — and if that’s just that you get ostracized by your friends group and your friends hang around and post it and make sure you see it, then that’s a big deal.”
“Social media can ruin lives if there isn’t some parameters, guidelines and understanding,” he adds. “It has to be a team effort where everyone is on the same page.”
Investing in finding the right kind of mentors that teens can trust can also prove beneficial. “Children don’t want to hear it from their parents, they want to hear it from someone else,” he says, adding, “Sometimes the same message comes from a different messenger.”
Most importantly, you’ll raise the bar – aka no spoiling! “Often parents have the best of intentions but bad practices.” says LeBeau. “You have to expect more from them, and most of the time the kids will be up to the task.”
As well as talking to teenagers across the country, LeBeau has some other exciting things in the works: It’s not just expanding That Attitude Advantage Program, he is also working on the adaptation of a TV show where he and his team help teenagers who need help. LeBeau is also collaborating with Magnifi U on a learning path that aims to come to the platform in August 2022.
Until then, however, LeBeau finds fulfillment in being a sounding board for struggling teenagers. “We joke about it all the time, how is this our life? BActually, all we have to do is take an interest in these children and get involved in their lives,” he says Us. “We’re also vulnerable — and that really allows for building rapport.”