How is youth coaching different from youth counselling?
One difference between youth counselling and youth coaching is that counselling will investigate the underlying causes of mental health problems. Youth coaching focuses more so on the future, to encourage personal-development and self-improvement. The strategies used are often derived from solution- focussed counselling strategies.
It is important to first discuss with the young person their options and find out if they would like to consider visiting a youth coach. There will be an initial meeting, if in school or the home there needs to be a room that a conversation can take place.
After attending an initial meeting, the young person will be invited to attend a series of sessions, often varying between 6 and 12 sessions. Each session will last between 30-minutes to an hour. During the sessions, then I will ask a selection of questions to get an idea of where any problems lie, establish what kind of attitudes and values the young person holds and work out what actions are needed for them to move forward.
If you have a student in mind where coaching would have a positive impact then please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Youth coaching methods
I will use a variety of ways, personalised to the young person after we have met to coach them, however some common youth coaching methods include:
Interviewing / therapeutic conversations – It sounds scary but, actually, it is just an opportunity for the young person to talk and the coach to get as much information as possible. I will ask carefully phrased questions designed to get the client talking. I will consider the young person’s responses and body language to build a strong relationship and develop a richer understanding of the problem.
Journaling – Sometimes writing things down helps people to express the feelings they find difficult to put into words. Clients are encouraged to get into the habit of journaling their thoughts, feelings and worries instead of holding them in, this can also include sketching and art work.
Activities / Games – I may use light-hearted activities and exercises to build a strong, trusting relationship with the client. This method is often used to allow the young person to express their concerns on subjects they find too difficult to discuss during the interview method.
I will generally offer face-to-face sessions but can be contactable by clients via email if appropriate.