I found out a couple of weeks ago that I have been accepted to be a coach for Yes Futures. They are a charity who provide a couple of coaching programmes for young people in primary or secondary schools. I will be coaching Year 7 & 8 pupils on confidence, resilience, self-awareness and communication and I can’t wait!
I had the training day last week and I’m really excited to start working with the young people and to see how the programme unfolds over the next few months. Obviously I’m slightly nervous too but, as it’s something new, that isn’t unusual. I feel really passionately about introducing young people to coaching in the hope that they learn new ways to be more confident and resilient.
I hear a lot about children with anxiety these days and although I’m sure that was the case when I was younger, I wonder if it is partly the amount of pressure that seems to be on young people in school these days. Loads of exams and then going home to find the Internet providing instant comparisons must be really difficult to deal with. These things are difficult as an adult! I do feel that if you give young people the opportunity and support to find good coping strategies, they will hopefully become more stable adults.
It may put more coaches and counsellors out of jobs, but I think it’s worth it for a more positive population. Imagine as a child or young adult that you were able to find ways of coping that didn’t involve pushing down your feelings or masking them with someone else. Imagine that you could feel free to discuss your fears or hopes with someone without any judgement. Imagine if your coping strategies as an adult didn’t involve alcohol, drugs or eating disorders. Imagine this for your children!
I love working with adults and talking to them about how they can improve their lives. It’s such a joy and seeing the light in someone’s eyes or hearing the hope in someone’s voice when they realise how something simple can make a difference always makes my day. But with young people, it’s not just getting over the walls you’ve built, it’s helping them to not need the walls in the first place that brings joy.
I think this should be available to all children but unfortunately at the moment it just isn’t. It sounds like it’s something that schools want but teachers have to teach the curriculum and get their kids to pass their tests. I’m not suggesting teachers are at fault here, just that they have priorities and time (and probably money) play a part in what can be taught and when.
So this is a call for any ideas for getting coaching to children. If you have any ideas you’d like to discuss, then please get in touch because I’m eager to help and provide my services.