Coaching children: how to reach the best in your child
One of the most powerful pieces of research relating to coaching children was carried out using Yale University Graduates in America. They were surveyed in the 1950’s and again twenty years later.
Shockingly, three percent were worth more in terms of their wealth than the other 97 percent put together. They had better health and enjoyed better relationships with others.
Only one thing fully explained this 3%- 97% split. It was not parental wealth, degree subjects taken, career selected, ethnic or gender based.
The key difference was that the successful 3% wrote down their goals in the 1950’s while the rest did not. The focused 3% had their goals in mind with every action they took.
This story is a brilliant illustration of what can be achieved through the goal-setting that is a vital part of coaching.
We all want our children to succeed and be happy but often we feel frustrated that our children do not listen to us while they feel that we are not listening to them
A coach can break through this negative cycle by showing the youngster that they are really listening. Just this is often a breakthrough. The child who knows someone is really listening starts to feel confident, special, they start to feel understood. They’re in the right frame of mind to focus on what they want and establish their goals.
Young people are beset with frustrations and negative thinking cycles – ‘I’m not clever enough, I won’t get a boy friend/ girlfriend, no one likes me, I won’t pass my exams.’ They often feel unable to make decisions, or bogged down in decisions they have to make.
A coach can help them see the bigger picture and find a route towards what they really want, helping them to use the power of positive thinking and encouraging them to use their own resources, such as focusing on their strengths, to achieve their goals. Unlike counselling, a coach will go back to the past only to use a positive experience as a springboard to help them to achieve a goal.
A coach’s work with young people builds on these strategies and helps develop self-esteem, improve behaviour and raise attainment. They will provide a non-judgmental oasis for a young person to explore their hopes and dreams and provide support as they move towards their dreams.
My philosophy, and the concept I encourage my young coaching clients to believe, is summed up by Henry Ford who said:
‘Failure is the only opportunity to more intelligently begin again.’