Updated: Jan 6
It’s now obvious that this new generation has advanced faster than anybody could have imagined, with teens now smarter and more aware of what they can achieve much earlier in life. But this new generation also has a whole new host of issues to deal with, and for many young people it is not easy.
During my career as a Life Coach/ Therapist and working with Shadow Wind, I have seen my clients average age change from being nearly exclusively around forty plus to now including a fast growing number of teenagers.
For example the details on the website enquiry form I had recently received were not uncommon. The client required support for his two online businesses, his time management, and if I could help him increase confidence in his relationships with females then that would be great too. What was also becoming more common was the fact that he was still at school. He was 15 to be exact, and Swedish.
What is different as a teen these days?
Why are so many of you now taking time out from social media, homework, making your first million, and the hormonal roller coaster to consider having a coach or mentor? One of the reasons seems to be that just as people are experiencing growing up faster now, they are becoming aware of the issues adults face faster too. That may be issues in business, in love, in health, and in many different ways.
And what it is that makes having somebody to support you so life changing? Any good coach (or therapist for that matter) is not only looking to help you solve the issues that you have come to them with, but is also looking to teach you a way of dealing with future issues that may arise in life. This often takes the form of techniques and exercises for you to use, but behind all of these methods lies at least one and probably more philosophies on how to be successful in life and live happily. An experienced coach or mentor is not only teaching you to be able to adopt different ways of thinking and acting more effectively in the moment, but showing you completely new perspectives that can bring long lasting change and allow you to deal with the future challenges that life will throw at you. Obviously the younger you are able to learn these methods and philosophies, the more naturally and efficiently you will be able to profit from them. Look at anybody who has started young learning a language or a musical instrument to see what I mean.
But is it cool?
The old fashioned stigmas that were once attached to getting outside support from a therapist or coach have long passed, and it is now common knowledge that the likes of Bill Gates, Eric Shmidt, and most great leaders of industry use coaches. Executive coaching itself has spread down from being only for the elite to being commonplace for many small businesses, as having guidance/mentoring and somebody to question your old perspectives and offer new ones has proven a very good investment. In fact having somebody there to offer the wisdom of their experiences rather than you having to live a lifetime to attain it can save you... a lifetime.
Some examples might be that you might find that you are feeling a lot more pressure in your relationships due to the level of social media you are engaged in. Health itself is often distorted by the powerful hormonal changes you are feeling. How are you supposed to look and act to cut it out there in the world now? There is the pressure of exams and getting that first job/business to carry you into the next stage in life. And as for love – well - we have only got about 1000 words in this article. Add to all this the challenges many young people face involving sex, drugs, alcohol, and very importantly the relationship you have with your parents, and it can seem like there is an awful lot of life to manage. A good coaching experience can teach you life management from an early age.
Where does Shadow Wind fit into all of this?
So young people are starting to understand the benefits of learning a philosophy to life, and learning how to deal with challenges in life. Another explanation for this rise in the number of younger people seeking a coach for support is that with the maturing of the internet, they have become aware of the help that is available to them. Anything that offers a good (and sometimes surprisingly fast) solution to a problem or a worry has got to improve your life because as we have already noted, there is a lot going on and time is valuable. It is easy to run a Google search and find local coaches to talk or have an online conversation with. Many will offer a free consultation to give you time to decide if you feel comfortable working with them (research has shown that one of the most important factors of success with a coach is your trust and rapport with them). Making sure that your coach has qualifications and references is very important – you’ve all been warned about the internet! And that brings us to Shadow Wind CIC.
At Shadow Wind we not only take all sorts of people out sailing, we offer them coaching, therapy, philosophy, and an environment that takes you away from day to day life. We work with old and young, and we know a thing or two about teenage life. And sailing not only allows you to step back from your usual daily not-so-comfortable comfort zone, it forces you to face your own challenges but at the same time makes you part of a very close knit team of people. People you can rely on, and who need to rely on you too. It doesn't matter where you come from, if you have never seen a boat before, or what you think the sailors world is. We can show you, and at the same time, and only if you want to, you can talk to somebody who might just help you find some answers...
And that takes us nicely to the big final question: does it all work? Well the client who sent the contact form at the beginning of this article has just sent me an email:
“You really gave me clarity and that is why I would just like to thank you for your help, it really means a lot to me. The things you are doing to help me I don't believe nobody has ever helped me with in this way before. The way you help me is that you really ask what I want and you are not asking me to do stuff that wouldn't really help me, or that I don't want to do, which no one has ever done before and it just makes me really happy deep down that you have guided me more and more in the right direction. For every session and for every exercise that you have suggested that I should do have just made me happier and more clear of what my goals are, and deep down I appreciate that a lot! Thank you.”
“The most challenging times bring us the most empowering lessons.”