Top College Guru: College Success Step by Step

The Top College Guru Blog

One Mom's Insight


A lot of people ask me about how they can get scholarships, and if I can share any secrets to getting them.

Honestly, one of my first answers is: you need the right Perspective. You need to understand, like anything else of real value, scholarships take work, and to be successful you need to be diligent. And being diligent has its rewards! Let me explain with this story.

I have a friend whose family wanted to send him to college, but they simply didn’t have the funds. His Mom had heard about scholarships and asked her son to do as much research, and apply to as many scholarships as possible.

And so by the end of his Sophomore year, my friend began to enthusiastically search and look at all the options. He completed applications, sent them to various organizations, and got hustling. Well, despite a strong start he got a few rejection letters, and he missed some deadlines… and so getting discouraged… his efforts lagged. He even complained, "Why do I have to do all...

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Your Biggest Hurdle to Getting Scholarships

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Your Biggest Hurdle Is Right In Front of You

Have you ever had a HUGE task you’ve complete procrastinated and the thought of even starting gave you anxiety?

 Maybe it was a huge project you know you need to get started on.

 Or maybe it was getting something fixed that you’ve been putting off.

 Well, whatever it was… chances are a little procrastination here and there probably didn’t severely impact your life. Let me explain.

 That delayed project start? The worst that happened was probably a lower grade or even an all-nighter to get it done.

 That thing that needed fixing? You probably went on living life as normal until it REALLY needed fixing. Maybe it took up a full Saturday or two.

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Procrastinating College Prep Doesn't Pay

The problem is, preparing to pay for college -and especially the scholarship search-- is the complete opposite. Procrastination? Delaying? These things WILL have severe consequences… because...

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The Three Ways to Pay for College

Madagscar Penguins GIF - Madagscar Penguins IMakeMyOwnOptions GIFsWhen it comes to paying for college… you have three options.

That’s right: Three Options.

To be honest, most people preparing for college never think about it in this way… but after years of coaching students and their families I’m here to tell you it all boils down to these three:

You can either pay for it with your money, free money, or loans.

Let’s break these down and go over why this matters.


Paying for college with your own money means using… (wait for it)… YOUR money. This can either be in the form of cash from under the mattress, savings, and investment accounts, or other vehicles for your money 

While using your own money is great, there are two downsides:

  1. Once you use it, it’s gone. You can’t use it for anything else…
  2. Most people don’t have anywhere near enough saved up

As I’ve mentioned before, the average family has only $18,000 saved up for college. But most families...

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The One Thing You Need To Do Today

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Let's face it. College is critical to your future, but it's expensive.

One study says that the average amount of college savings a family has is $18,000. If that’s the case, then with tuition expenses continuing to rise, the average family's college savings are gone after the first semester of college. 

People ask me all the time, "Whats the one thing I need to do to start preparing to pay for college?"

My response surprises them... because they aren't expecting this piece of advice.

My answer?

"Think differently."

It starts with changing your mind-set. We need to change how you think about paying for college.

Let me explain.

Have you ever heard of the Eisenhower Method?

Before Dwight D. Eisenhower became the 34th President, he was the general of the US Army and also served as the head of the Allied Forces in World War II. His success as a leader depended on his ability to determine what the highest priority decisions were, and go...

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Welcome to!

My name is Christian Hansen, and I'm the Top College Guru.

Have you ever worked really hard for something and felt like you were just spinning your wheels and not going anywhere? I sure have. In fact, when I was preparing for college and making plans for my future I felt like that all the time - and even worse - felt like I wasn't getting anywhere. 

It wasn't until years later that I learned this valuable lesson: Effort does not equal success. 

"Hold up!" I hear you say, "Aren't we supposed to work hard? Aren't we supposed to put forth effort in order to succeed?"

Absolutely. Yes.

Effort is CRITICAL.

But effort alone doesn't equal success. In many cases it is a precursor to success, the foundation of success... but it is not the same as success.

Yes, effort is integral... but it is incomplete. Because it's only half the equation. Success is contingent on effort combined with... a winning plan. A strategy. A direction.

I may give effort...

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