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College Students Expected to Save $60 Million this Academic Year Using New Subscription Service for Textbooks and Course Materials

Cengage Unlimited subscription offers unlimited access to more than 22,000 eBooks, online homework access codes and study guides at affordable price

BOSTON—November 27, 2018—After tuition, college students say buying textbooks is their leading source of financial stress, according to a recent survey. In fact, 85% of students surveyed said paying for textbooks and course materials is more stressful than buying food, housing or health care.

For the 2018-19 school year, college students finally have some relief – an estimated $60 million of it – by using a new, comprehensive subscription service from Cengage. Cengage, the largest U.S.-based education and technology company serving the higher education market, provides course materials to almost half of the 20 million students pursuing higher education.

Commercially available to students in August 2018, Cengage Unlimited offers complete access to more than 22,000 digital course materials, including eBooks, online homework access codes and study guides.  A subscription also includes free access to offerings from Kaplan, Quizlet and Chegg, with more to come soon. Students pay one price—no matter how many materials they use.  Subscriptions cost $119.99 a semester ($179.99 a year) and are available directly from Cengage, online or at campus and off-campus bookstores. Print rentals are available for $7.99 with free shipping.

Considering students spend, on average, about $500 annually (with some spending significantly more), the subscription can save students half or more of what they were paying previously. Students may use their financial aid to purchase a subscription.

A new, interactive Savings Map allows faculty, administrators and students to see which courses use Cengage at their institution.  The map highlights more than 500 schools to date.

“In launching Cengage Unlimited, we made a bold move to offer a subscription service in an industry that has historically been loath to change,” said Michael Hansen, CEO, Cengage. “It is exceedingly rare that an incumbent rather than a start-up transforms an industry.  And yet, the overwhelmingly enthusiastic response to Cengage Unlimited—from students, parents and faculty—underscores that our approach to lower students’ costs so they can afford to access quality learning was the right one.  It also works for our business as we are signing an unprecedented number of new student customers.  We are very pleased to have more than 500,000 subscribers already and look forward to reaching more students in the upcoming January semester and beyond.”

“To give students more resources at a lower price point is a testament to the company’s focus on student experience, and I’m eager to see how it transforms the higher education system as a whole,” said Bilal Shalash, a senior at the University of Kentucky and a Cengage Student Ambassador.

Cengage is a leader in affordability and access to high quality learning materials. In addition to the first all-access subscription service, Cengage was the first to launch a comprehensive print rental program, with nearly all the company’s titles.  Cengage was also the first major education and technology company to offer an Open Educational Resource (OER) product called Cengage OpenNOW.  The company also actively delivers digital course materials through Cengage Inclusive Access, a business model that offers students savings by integrating the cost of course materials into registration fees.  Finally, the company has instituted price caps on its new print editions and substantial price reductions on its eBooks.

For more information about the new, all-access subscription service for course materials, or to purchase now, visit https://www.cengage.com/unlimited/. To access the interactive Savings Map, visit: https://www.cengage.com/unlimited/map/.

About Cengage
Cengage is the education and technology company built for learners. As the largest US-based provider of teaching and learning materials for higher education, we offer valuable options at affordable price points. Our industry-leading initiatives include Cengage Unlimited, the first-of-its-kind all-access digital subscription service.  We embrace innovation to create learning experiences that build confidence and momentum toward the future students want. Headquartered in Boston, Cengage also serves K-12, library and workforce training markets around the world. Visit us at www.cengage.com or find us on Facebook or Twitter.

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Media Contacts
Susan Aspey
Cengage
202-695-6012
susan.aspey@cengage.com

Kristina Massari
Cengage
203-965-8694
Kristina.massari@cengage.com

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College Student Reporters Invited to Video Press Conference about Textbook Affordability and New Subscription Service

BOSTON—September 5, 2018—Hey, college student reporters! Almost 90% of your peers say paying for textbooks is their biggest source of financial stress after tuition. College students say they skip meals or don’t take classes because they can’t afford their textbooks.

It’s 2018 – why do college textbooks cost so much?  What will it take to make them more affordable?  Here’s your chance to ask the CEO of Cengage, the largest US-based publisher of college textbooks! Join an exclusive video press conference for student reporters and hear what Cengage is doing to make your course materials more affordable.

What: Live Video Press Conference for Student Reporters

Who: Cengage CEO Michael Hansen

Cengage EVP Sharon Loeb

When: Tuesday, September 11, 2018

1:00pm ET

Where: Register here by September 10 for more details

Cengage PR Contacts: Chloe.Ryan@Cengage.com or Jessica.Kravet@Cengage.com

About Cengage
Cengage is the education and technology company built for learners. As the largest US-based provider of teaching and learning materials for higher ed, we offer valuable options at affordable price points. Our industry-leading initiatives include Cengage Unlimited, the first-of-its-kind all-access digital subscription service.  We embrace innovation to create learning experiences that build confidence and momentum toward the future students want. Headquartered in Boston, Cengage also serves K-12, library and workforce training markets around the world. Visit us at www.cengage.com or find us on Facebook or Twitter.

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Heading Back to Campus? College Students Finally Have an Alternative to Buying Traditional, High-Priced Textbooks and Course Materials

Cengage Logo

New Cengage subscription service for course materials—unlimited access for one price—now available

BOSTON—August 1, 2018—As millions of college students head back to campus this month, they’ll embark on what’s become a dreaded, semi-annual ritual: buying textbooks and course materials.  It’s a process that, according to a new survey by Morning Consult, brings significant financial stress for students about how they’ll afford their course materials and still pay for tuition, housing and food.

Students deserve a better way.  And this year—for the first time ever—they’ll have it, thanks to a new subscription from Cengage that offers unlimited access to more than 20,000 digital course materials, including eBooks, online homework and study guides, for one price.  Cengage, the largest U.S.-based education and technology company serving the higher education market, provides course materials to 11 million of the 20 million students pursuing higher education.

The subscription, called Cengage Unlimited, is now available for purchase directly from Cengage, online or at campus and off-campus bookstores.  A subscription costs $119.99 a semester or $179.99 a year. Considering students spend, on average, about $579 annually (with some spending significantly more), the subscription can save students up to half of what they were paying and, in some cases, even more. Students may use financial aid to purchase a subscription.

“For too long, our industry has contributed to the lack of affordable access to higher learning.  Despite years of student and faculty complaints, the industry continued to push an outdated, traditional business model that didn’t put students first,” said Michael Hansen, CEO, Cengage.

“At Cengage, those days are over,” Hansen continued. “As a student-focused company, we have very deliberately embarked on a path to replace the industry’s century-old business model and offer students unlimited access to quality learning at an affordable price.  We believe Cengage Unlimited will smash barriers to access for students by using the simple approach they already embrace in their daily lives, including movies, music and even health care.”

A Cengage Unlimited subscription offers access to thousands of digital products across 70 subjects and 675 courses—for one price, no matter how many Cengage materials they use. In addition, students using Cengage learning technology platforms, like MindTap or WebAssign, have the option of a print rental for $7.99 with free shipping.  When their subscription ends, students retain reference access to their key course materials for the first year for free.

“Everyone knows the cost of books has become prohibitive to achieving a college degree. By going to this subscription format, Cengage Unlimited cuts the cost down dramatically,” said Dr. Will Austin, President of Warren County Community College (NJ). “The best way to think of this is like a Netflix or Hulu for textbooks: for a flat fee, students get every educational product created by the largest academic publisher in the United States, all at their fingertips, on their tablets, computer, or smart phone instantly.”

According to the Morning Consult survey, Today’s Learner: Student Views 2018, conducted on behalf of Cengage:

● Textbook Purchases Increase Student Stress: Eighty-five percent of current and former students say that their textbook and course material expenses are financially stressful, more so than meals and food (63 percent), healthcare (69 percent), housing (73 percent) and barely less stressful than tuition (88 percent).
● Students Sacrifice Food for Textbooks: Nearly half of current and former college students (43 percent) say they’ve saved money by skipping meals to afford course materials.
● Minority Students Are Disproportionally Impacted: Minority students are more likely to report taking fewer classes to save on textbook costs; African American students are 35 percent more likely to save money for books by skipping a trip home. Sixty-four percent of Hispanic students have opted not to buy the required textbooks or course materials.
● Women Find Paying for Textbooks and Course Materials to Be More Financially Stressful than Men (60 percent v. 48 percent): Sixty-four percent of women have purchased outdated versions of textbooks, compared to 57 percent of men; forty-seven percent of women have taken out a loan to pay for textbooks, compared to 38 percent of men.
● Students Make Costly Decisions to Cope with the Financial Burden: Almost seven in 10 students report having to get a job during the school year to pay for college textbooks; 43 percent have taken out a loan; and 31 percent have taken fewer classes to save on textbooks costs.
● Digital Access Drives Success: Digital is seen as a way to improve learning, with 81 percent of students saying easily accessible digital course materials would have a positive impact on their grades. When it comes to digital access, cost and affordability remain key: 72 percent of students say cost-effectiveness is very important when considering digital course materials.

For more information about the new, all-access subscription service for course materials, or to purchase now, visit Cengage.com/Unlimited.

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About Cengage
Cengage is the education and technology company built for learners. As the largest US-based provider of teaching and learning materials for higher education, we offer valuable options at affordable price points. Our industry-leading initiatives include Cengage Unlimited, the first-of-its-kind all-access digital subscription service.  We embrace innovation to create learning experiences that build confidence and momentum toward the future students want. Headquartered in Boston, Cengage also serves K-12, library and workforce training markets around the world. Visit us at www.cengage.com or find us on Facebook or Twitter.

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Media Contacts
Susan Aspey
Cengage
202-695-6012
susan.aspey@cengage.com

Lindsay Stanley
Cengage
203-965-8634
lindsay.stanley@cengage.com

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iFlipd and GoFundMe Make Paying for Textbooks Easier for College Students

iFlipd-Logo-Green-Circlesgofundme-logo

Students can ease costs by starting a GoFundMe that will go directly toward their iFlipd on-demand textbook rental account

PORTLAND, OR. | AUG. 15, 2017: iFlipd, the only pay-as-you-go weekly textbook rental provider, announced a new partnership with GoFundMe, the world’s largest social fundraising platform, so college students can raise money from family, friends, and community organizations to help pay for their textbooks needs. All of the contributions raised go straight to the cost of the textbooks, so their supporters know their money is well spent.

“Paying for college is hard enough and many students can use some help. Our pay-as-you-go textbook solution provides a flexible experience at an affordable price,” said Kati Radziwon, iFlipd CEO and founder. “GoFundMe is the number one fundraiser for textbook costs to date and our partnership with them extends our simple and flexible payment process to a wider and needed audience.”

“With college tuition on the rise, it’s more important than ever to help support students pursuing their higher education,” said Rob Solomon, GoFundMe CEO. “Many students have a network of family and friends who are ready to help them out with expenses like textbooks. With this new partnership with iFlipd, we’re excited to make it easier and faster for college students to get the financial support they need.”

How can students start to raise money?
The process is simple for students to get started:

1. Create a free iFlipd account
2. Set up their GoFundMe account
3. Share their story, invite family & friends to help fund their textbooks
4. Apply the funds directly through iFlipd to rent and pay for textbooks

Why iFlipd?
As the only pay-as-you-go weekly textbook rental provider, iFlipd allows students to pay for only the time they need through weekly rentals. Students instantly have access to the books they need in print and eBook format. Students can return them any time they like while earning reward points each time.

About GoFundMe
Launched in 2010, GoFundMe is the world’s largest social fundraising platform, with over $4 billion raised so far. With a community of more than 40 million donors, GoFundMe is changing the way the world gives. Find us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram.

About iFlipd
iFlipd is the first textbook pay-as-you-go rental platform that allows students to pay for only the weeks they really need textbooks. Through this payment model students are empowered to break up the traditional cost of textbooks. For more information please visit: www.iflipd.com

Media Contact:
Keith Bristol, iFlipd
press@iflipd.com

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The Easy Way to Save Money on Textbooks

logo

iFlipd allows short-term textbook rentals with weekly rental model
Sign up today to get $60 OFF!

PORTLAND, OR – September 19, 2016: The genius of iFlipd is in the flexibility, as students can rent textbooks by the week in print or digital. iFlipd launched the industry’s first weekly textbook rental service, empowering students to break up the cost of textbooks and only pay for the weeks they really need them. Obviously, for some classes students need a book for the entire semester. Now they have free financing by breaking up book payments into small weekly installments. But what about classes where students only use a book for two-weeks of the term?

This is where students can really save with iFlipd. Students can rent a book for the initial assignment and flip it back after the paper or quiz. Grab it again for the mid-term, and then at the end of the term to study for the final. Now students are only paying for those scattered weeks throughout the term when they really need the books. No more paying full price for six books that the professor assigned for class.

SIGN UP TODAY AND SAVE $60

“Students should have more affordable choices when it comes to textbooks, and iFlipd fills that void by letting them decide when to pay and for how long,” said Kati Radziwon, iFlipd CEO and founder. “We have students across 319 cities from campuses such as Oregon, UCLA, Florida, and NYU that are saving money renting by week. By giving students flexibility with their books, they are now in control of their costs like never before.”

Accounts are free with plenty of opportunities for students to earn free books using a points system. Every new account gets a free weekly rental, and every friend they invite, earns points towards free books and more. iFlipd has textbook rentals as low as $2 a week and college students are saving more than $600 a year.

Students can sign up to start saving at: www.iflipd.com.

About iFlipd
iFlipd is the first weekly rental textbook platform that allows students to pay for only the weeks they really need textbooks. With the first pay-as-you-go model students are empowered to break up the traditional cost of textbooks. For more information please visit: www.iflipd.com

Media Contact
Kati Radziwon
press@iflipd.com

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Bored in class? Stop texting & hack your learning style to get ahead

Kaplan Logo

So you’re an English major who signed up for “Geology 101: The History of Rocks” to fulfill a requirement you wouldn’t wish on anyone. Or maybe you’re a Geology major forced to take “English 110: Shakespeare’s Sonnets in the Modern World.” Let’s face it: not every course you’re taking this semester may seem like a winner.

You’re not alone. A recent study from the University of Central Lancashire reports that almost 60% of students find at least half their lectures boring, with 75% resorting to daydreaming, 66% to doodling, and 45% to texting to pass the time.

So who’s to blame? Sometimes the material bores us, and sometimes our professors are as uninteresting as an over-filtered Kardashian selfie, but sometimes we’re just not paying attention. Placing blame is pretty subjective, but the data about how we learn and retain information is not. Learning science shows that obtuse subjects, poor teachers, and even your own boredom don’t have to be roadblocks to your learning experience.

Dr. Bror Saxberg, Chief Learning Officer at Kaplan, is an expert in learning science, a field that applies scientific principles to the design and improvement of instructional methods to promote better learning outcomes. If you’re finding some of your courses to be a slog this semester, Bror has some tips to help you take responsibility for your own learning and get the most out of your classes.

• If you aren’t interested in the subject, try connecting it to what you are interested in. This will improve both retention and understanding. For example, Dr. Saxberg once wrote an English paper that used statistics to analyze themes in Romeo and Juliet. Try talking to your professors about how you can use your talents to explore the subject in a new way — they might just be impressed with your initiative! After all, passivity is the enemy of learning.

• In class, take detailed notes by hand, not by computer. The goal is to force yourself to summarize on the fly, not get the words verbatim. You might find the subject more interesting than you initially thought — and you’ll be amazed how bits and pieces will keep coming to mind afterwards. (To quote Shakespeare: “But soft! what light through yonder window breaks?”)

• Get the most out of reading assignments by voluntarily summarizing them with the book closed. While this isn’t easy, it really works to embed what you know — and reveal what’s important you might have missed.

• Space out your assignments rather than hustle to get them all done at the end of the semester. Students who do their work in spaced-out chunks as they approach the finish line are more likely to actually understand and retain information, so plan ahead! Best of all, you’ll be much less stressed when Spring Fling hits at the same time your friends’ essays are all due.

At the end of the day, we all have requirements and even electives that might not prove to be as interesting as we thought. But that doesn’t mean we can’t make the most of our classroom and study time.

Using just a few proven learning science techniques, a forgettable class for everyone else can become a great — maybe even transformative — class for you.

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Textbook Lesson: How Students Can Save on Course Materials

NACS

OBERLIN, OHIO, February 18, 2016 – Most college textbooks cost a lot less than celebrity tweeters, like Kanye West, and many other people may think, according to the National Association of College Stores (NACS), which keeps its finger on the pulse of course materials.

The average cost of a new textbook is $79, based on NACS’ annual survey of independent campus stores. And while the cost of textbooks may increase over time, student spending is on the decline. According to Student Watch™: Attitudes and Behaviors toward Course Materials: Spring 2015, average annual spending by students on required course materials has dropped from $701 in 2007/2008 to $563 in 2014/2015, a 20 percent decline over the last seven years.

Students have many options beyond purchasing new textbooks, and it is because of the many options available today that student spending has decreased. Here are some of the options students should explore in their search for savings on course materials:

Rent, buy used or acquire electronic course materials. Almost all campus stores offer these options, giving cost-conscious students access to course materials for about one-third to half the price of buying new.

Shop early. Students should shop as early as possible in order to beat the beginning-of-semester rush. The sooner you shop, the more options you have, particularly with used and rental course materials.

Use price-comparison tools. Check the campus store’s website for a price-comparison tool. Students can save time and money by finding the best option at the best price.

Talk to the campus store. If students can’t find what they are looking for or simply want to know if there are lower cost options available, ask the campus store. The store’s employees are course material professionals and are happy to help.

Open educational resources (OER), educational materials that are in the public domain or with an open license, are also a cost-savings option for students. Many institutions encourage their professors to consider assigning OER on their syllabi, and some even have established programs to incentivize and fund faculty to develop original OER materials.

Campus stores work closely with professors and campus library staffs on OER initiatives and are partnering with companies such as OER industry leader OpenStax to stock low cost print copies of open textbooks.

“We support and champion student access to affordable course materials,” said Jenny Febbo, NACS spokesperson. “There are many cost options for students to explore, and their local campus store can help.”

About The National Association of College Stores:
The National Association of College Stores (NACS) is the professional trade association representing the $10 billion collegiate retailing industry. NACS represents nearly 3,000 campus retailers and approximately 1,000 industry-related companies that supply course materials and other merchandise and services to campus stores. NACS provides education and other resources that help its member stores support student success, the campus experience, and the academic missions of higher education institutions. NACS is headquartered in Oberlin, Ohio. Additional information can be found online at www.nacs.org.

Contact: 
Laura Massie
National Assn. of College Stores
(800) 622-7498 ext. 2351
lmassie@nacs.org

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Arm Yourself with Cash by Selling Textbooks Online at TextbookArmy.com

Textbook-Army

Get a free pair of sunglasses by joining the TextbookArmy crew! 

Nashville, TN – TextbookArmy®, a new online textbook buyback company, is arming students with an easy way to unload textbooks and get cash in return. Students can now easily sell textbooks online at www.textbookarmy.com.

TextbookArmy.com is the easiest-to-use buyback platform for textbooks and offers the best value online. The company provides free quotes, no cost shipping in the 48 contiguous United States and unmatched customer service.

TextbookArmy offers the best value for selling textbooks in four easy steps:

  1. Register for an account at www.textbookarmy.com.
  2. Get a free quote on the textbooks you want to sell
  3. Ship textbooks (for free) to TextbookArmy
  4. Get cash via PayPal! Typical turnaround time is three days or less after textbooks are received and processed.

To celebrate its launch, TextbookArmy is giving a pair of sunglasses to all who register for a TextbookArmy account now, through the end of August 2014. Post a sunglass-wearing selfie to TextbookArmy’s FacebookTwitter or Instagram pages with the hashtag #ArmyShades to be entered to win a pair of Ray-Ban®  sunglasses. A pair of Ray-Bans will be given away every week, so pimp those TextbookArmy.com shades like a rock star – around town, in class, at the gym or on your pets. Be creative, be bold and think of your mom before posting. Follow TextbookArmy on our social network to see the selfies happening nationwide. For more information about the contest visit our contest page.

About TextbookArmy.com
TextbookArmy.com launched in 2014 and is a pioneer in the textbook buyback space.  Owned by IN MINN Inc., the company offers customers comprehensive and easy-to-use options to help make the best return on book investments.  TextBookArmy.com is dedicated to offering the best value for textbooks, providing the finest customer service and paying our customers fast.   For more information on Textbook Army visit www.textbookarmy.com

Contact:
press@textbookarmy.com

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From Awareness to Advocacy: How Text100 Leads Audiences on a Journey

Text100 Global CommunicationsThis week, we heard from Jeremy Woolf, Senior Vice President and Global Digital/Social Media Lead at Text100 who came in at #16 on our list of the top PR firms on social media this year. Jeremy gave us some insight into how Text100 works with their clients, and how they use social media as part of the journey they take audiences on.

For your clients, which social networks have been the most effective for PR?

We’ve seen great success working with LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. We’ve also done great work creating and driving our clients’ blogs. While blogs aren’t typically as social as the other networks, they’ve proven to be an important platform for thought leadership, with the posts amplified through social networks and used as catalysts for discussion.

How do you go about handling a social media PR campaign? Do you guide your client or take control and run their accounts?

It’s a mix. Our team gets involved in client campaigns at several levels – from research, concept development, strategy and planning, to content production and development, community management, analytics and measurement. We’ll happily manage the entire process on behalf of our clients, and/or also act as advisors as they manage their own social properties and campaigns.

What advice would you give when it comes to using social media for a public relations campaign?

Don’t treat social as a campaign.  Social media is a commitment to participating in, joining, building and sustaining an active community. You also need to consider social media in the proper context. It isn’t a strategy. There’s no one size fits all approach.  Each platform is evolving regularly and so should your strategy.  It’s not about being on every platform, it’s about being on the right platforms for your brand and managing those well.

How would you recommend that a client handles a big screw up on social media

Respond quickly through the channel that the issue broke in. Be honest and true to your brand’s values. Create an owned content channel that supports your side of the story with evidence. And finally, don’t feed the trolls.

What do you think sets your company apart from your competitors?

Text100 understands the entire audience journey, from awareness through to advocacy. We put the audience at the center of all of our campaigns. And we recognize that decisions are shaped by many different types of content through diverse media channels – paid, owned, earned and social. These channels need to work together to help our audience reach specific points of action.

You can also follow Text100 on Facebook, Twitter, or through their blog.

If you know a PR firm who would like to offer their social media advice to other professionals, leave a comment or contact info@uwire.com to let us hear about it.

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Best Self is the perfect inspiration for Graduates

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO HEALING AND DESIGNING YOUR BEST LIFE!

BEST SELF

Be You, Only Better

by Life Coach Mike Bayer

Foreword by Dr. Phil McGraw

*On Sale Now*

 

 

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Praise for BEST SELF:

“When you read Best Self, you’ll understand that Coach Mike’s formula puts the power of change in the hands of the individual. He encourages people to dig deep and ask themselves basic but important questions like—What do you really want? What are you afraid of? Who is holding you back? He challenges people to strive to live authentically. This book is a must read for anyone who wants to thrive in all areas of life.”

Jennifer Lopez

 “Coach Mike is a true professional and Best Self is his bible, his ‘how to’ manual on maximizing your potential by discovering the best person you can be in the most effective way you can. Mike Bayer is not a buzz word dispenser. He is a common sense, action-oriented coach that will tell you how to get from where you are to where you want to be in every area of your life, whether it be personal, family, professional, spiritual or all of the above.”

Dr. Phil McGraw

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Ask Yourself…Are you truly who you want to be? Is this the life you really want? Are you living each day as your best self? What can you change, today?

Mike Bayer isn’t a typical life coach. Modest and mellow, Mike (or “Coach Mike” as he is often called) has spent years helping his clients break through obstacles to live their best life. Acting as a behind-the-scenes superstar, his wildly successful techniques have recently earned him a spot as the first-ever regular contributor on the #1 rated Dr. Phil Show, as well as a key member of Dr. Phil McGraw’s advisory board which consists of 18 of the most accomplished and respected health care professionals in the country. Mike has worked with clients from all walks of life—from celebrities, athletes, and executives, to rageaholics, gamblers, agoraphobics and everyone in between—to confront their fears, acknowledge what is holding them back, and transform their lives into ones that are authentic, passionate, and well-rounded.

This January, Dey Street Books is proud to publish Mike’s first book, BEST SELF: Be You, Only Better (On Sale Now). In this empowering guide, Mike provides readers with an action-oriented, personalized plan for becoming their own life coach. This is not a self-help book that preaches about change. This is not a book that you have to read in-between the lines to glean life wisdom. This is an incredibly interactive, inspiring, and self-revealing book that as Mike says, “only works if you work it, so work it; you’re worth it!” Plus, after all, Mike doesn’t come to this only as a trusted teacher. He is living proof of the hard work, soul searching, and necessary change that can be obtained through these practices because he faced and worked to overcome his own struggle with addiction.

Full of revealing quizzes, provocative questionnaires, and creative drawing exercises, BEST SELF will provide readers with problem-solving strategies to examine where their life is now and determine once and for all who they want to be and where they want to go.

To start their BEST SELF journey, Mike suggests that readers first draw their Anti-Self and Best Self characters directly in the book. A person’s Anti-Self, the side of us triggered by negative situations and emotions like fear and anxiety, is important to identify so that we can attempt to reduce the amount of time we spend in this role. Is our Anti-Self a certain gender? Inspired by a character in a book or movie? Do they behave a certain way when feeling threatened? Is our Best Self warm and considerate? Are they clever and think anything is possible? Interestingly, Mike says it is typically easier for clients to identify their Anti-Self character than their Best Self and they are often shocked to see their results. By starting the book with this exercise, Mike argues that the next time a person is faced with a situation that would usually bring the Anti-Self to the surface, the goal is to let the Best Self character handle it instead. What starts as a conscious decision at the start will, over time, become automatic. The Anti-Self runs contrary to the Best Self, and the first step in taking their power away is to recognize they exist.

Once Anti-Self and Best Self characters are created, Mike takes readers through each of the seven SPHERES of our life:

• Your Social Life: Communication skills are incredibly important, and they can reflect how a person feels in their own skin. Prioritizing this aspect of their life should be at the top of the list. People need to find freedom to be their BEST SELF always—alone and with others.

• Your Personal Life: The most significant relationship in your life is with yourself. Living your BEST SELF means having a respectful internal dialogue, focusing on self-care, and prioritizing your passions. Taking care of yourself is not selfish; it’s crucial to your wellbeing.

• Your Health: If there’s a problem with your health, it can disrupt everything else in your life. Readers must do whatever they need to preserve, protect, and promote their physical health. The healthier you are, the greater your potential for accomplishing your goals.

• Your Education: Education helps us to grow as individuals and improve upon ourselves each day we learn something new. Your BEST SELF seeks knowledge all the time, no matter your method or speed; your job is simply to determine what interests you.

• Your Relationships: Relationships are never as complicated as they may seem. Though people may evolve and veer in different directions, Mike argues that extended periods of animosity with friends, family, or significant others can and should be easily avoided. Even if you can’t control others, you can condition yourself to key into your core values and let go of the baggage.

• Your Employment: Mike notes that personal development lies at the heart of your career development. He believes that if people put more emphasis on discovering their authentic selves starting in their school years, they could allow life to dictate their career path, rather than struggling to determine what they want to do and settling for dissatisfying or unfulfilling careers.

• Your Spiritual Development Life: Once you dive into all other aspects of your life, it’s time to examine your spiritual development, which underpins everything else. Too often ignored in your everyday, faith may be the very basis for tackling your fears, regrets, and sudden crises. Rather than waiting until something implodes, be in touch with your spiritual self so it is ready to tackle any storm that comes its way.

We might only have one shot at life, but it doesn’t mean that we are stuck with the life we’ve got. The tools needed to achieve a better version of ourselves are inside of us already, but BEST SELF will show us how to get there. Mike says, “There is a pervasive belief in society that people can’t change, not really. That is absolutely 100% untrue. If people couldn’t change, I’d still be penniless and addicted to drugs. I’ve seen people overcome all odds. People change. They did. You can.” So now the question is: Are YOU your BEST SELF? With Mike’s guidance, you can be you—only better. Let’s start living our best lives today and reach unimaginable heights in 2019.

GET THE BOOK AND JOIN THE CHALLENGE!

This May for Mental Health Awareness Month, Life Coach Mike Bayer is encouraging people from all walks of life to participate in the #BestSelfChallenge. Rarely on social media do we see authenticity. Everyone (at times, myself included) posts photos and videos showing only the “best” version or perceived version of themselves. We don’t often showcase the other, more vulnerable side of our lives. I created the #BestSelfChallenge as an inclusive way to embrace and showcase the parts of ourselves that we struggle with. By doing this challenge, it creates a space for people to be honest about what they are struggling with. Let’s show people they are not alone in dealing with these struggles and create a world where we feel free to discuss our vulnerability in a safe and open environment. Everyone, no matter how “healthy” they are, deals with internal battles.

As featured in his New York Times bestselling book BEST SELF: Be You, Only Better (on sale now), Coach Mike’s #BestSelfChallenge is a fun and easy exercise in which you define your Best Self (all of the positive attributes and qualities that make up the core of who you are; i.e.- compassionate, brave, loyal, loving, creative) and your Anti-Self (your inner critic, that provokes you and that gets in the way of your Best Self by focusing on negative qualities; i.e.- fearful, doubtful, anxious, angry), in a side by side drawing.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE IN THE #BESTSELFCHALLENGE:

• Share a side by side image of your Best & Anti-Self on your social media channels (post on May 1st, or shortly after)

• Tag @coachmikebayer in the photo

• Use the hashtag #bestselfchallenge

• Tag three people, including someone who inspires you, to join in

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mike Bayer received his B.S. in Alcohol and Drug Counseling from Metropolitan State University in Minnesota. He was a California Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor (CADC II) as well as a Board Registered Interventionist (BRI II). He began his career as a mental health and addiction counselor. After a residency at The Hazelden Foundation, Mike spent five years in the field, becoming one of the leading interventionists in the country. He did crisis consulting for several of the country’s top treatment programs, including the Hazelden Foundation. Fifteen years ago, he founded CAST Centers, a treatment center providing a network of professional support including doctors, psychologists, counselors, and instructors, to help clients heal and improve their mental and emotional health, and overall well-being. Mike continued promoting his message by founding the CAST Foundation, a 501(c)3 that raises awareness to promote cultural and social changes to de-stigmatize mental health issues. For more information about Mike, please visit www.coachmikebayer.com.

Facebook: @Coachmikebayer | Twitter: @Coachmikebayer | Instragram: @Coachmikebayer | YouTube: Coach Mike Bayer

ABOUT THE BOOK:

BEST SELF
Be You, Only Better
by Mike Bayer
Dey Street Books | On Sale Now |
Hardcover ISBN: 9780062911735 | $26.99 |
eBook ISBN: 9780062911759 | $21.99

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MEDIA CONTACT:

Heidi Richter
Dey Street Books
212-207-7478
heidi.richter@harpercollins.com

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