Youth Coaching

What is Coaching?

Coaching is the professional practice of helping people thrive. For teens and young adults, it supports and enhances their emotional wellness, yet it’s different from therapy.

In my practice, coaching is the skill of using evidence-based, research-backed methods to young people on their journey to self-discovery and life satisfaction. I develop 1:1 coaching plans that are tailored to my clients’ wants and needs, helping them strive for goals both big and small, such as increased confidence, reduced stress levels, improved time management, deeper relationships, or more comfort in their own skin. Coaching goals could also include making future college or career decisions.

Coaching occurs through 1:1 meetings, usually weekly or biweekly, and emphasizes autonomy, choice, and trust.

Who Seeks Coaching?

Teens or young adults who are eager for personal growth or career direction may seek out coaching for themselves. Sometimes for dancers, it is parents or sponsors—such as studio owners, teachers, professors, or program directors—who seek coaching on their behalf, to help them become more resilient and reach for their goals.

Young people come to coaching with an interest in self-improvement, whether in dance or in other parts of life. They are ready, willing, and able to do the work inherent in the growth process; they are committed to achieving the outcomes they seek.

My Coaching Approach

I consider myself a nonjudgmental accountability partner. I listen, inquire, reflect, observe, and share. I help my clients uncover their inner motivations and develop self-efficacy—AKA believing in themselves as capable of the behaviors needed to reach their goals. I am ethically-bound to follow each client’s lead, providing support to help them come up with the answers and solutions that will satisfy their desired outcomes.

My Clients

Though I specialize in working with current and former dance students ages 14 to 24, I welcome clients from all backgrounds and gender identities. Because of the customized nature of coaching, I work with a limited number of clients at any given time. This allows for optimal personal attention to each client’s individual coaching plan.

I use the word “client” whether I’m working with a minor or an adult. Parents or sponsors, if I am coaching your teen, they are the client. I will be happy to provide you with short email briefings of our sessions (upon request, with permission of your teen) but will otherwise keep the client’s confidence unless I have been informed of a concern that warrants a professional referral elsewhere.

One-to-One Coaching Services

I offer three types of 1:1 coaching programs for teens and young adults: resilience coaching, well-being coaching, and career discovery coaching. No matter the program you choose, I will create a customized coaching plan after we agree to work together. Coaching plans typically include anywhere from 5 to 10 coaching sessions (a 2 to 3 month commitment of weekly or biweekly sessions). Coaching sessions are client-focused, conversational, and may include evidence-based brainstorming activities to help articulate your values, desires, needs, and ideas. If you are my client, I follow your lead and support you on the way to your goals.

Read on for more about each coaching program.

Resilience Coaching

Resilience is having the capacity to not only withstand difficulties but grow from them. It is the ability to tap into intrinsic motivation and strive for goals, even when life gets hard or messy or uncomfortable. Building resilience can be challenging for gifted dance students who are accustomed to achieving success and are unsure how to navigate bumps in the road.

For teens and emerging adults, developing resilience skills can help with common challenges such as maintaining emotional regulation, advocating for oneself, coping with rejection, managing perfectionist tendencies, navigating interpersonal relationships, developing future-focused goals, and much more.

Resilience coaching is non-directive, person-centered, strength-based collaborative support. I use an evidence-based, developmentally appropriate approach to help clients figure out what they want, why it matters, how to achieve it, and how to get unstuck when obstacles appear. We work as partners. I tell my clients: we will work on your specific goals, as determined by you, so that you can develop your own voice and self-confidence. We’ll partner together to decide on action steps between sessions, so that we can mark your progress and celebrate milestones!

Well-Being Coaching

Life is rich, complex, and many-layered—particularly during the adolescent and young adult years. Partnering with a coach for personal and social development can help the brain become oriented for positive growth, contributing to a greater sense of well-being. I help clients take intentional action to increase their self-awareness, build self-efficacy, and tap into self-determination, enriching their experiences and priming them for authentic success in an any area of life.

What does all this mean for a young person?

Self-awareness is a deeper understanding of yourself: your needs, strengths, values, thought patterns, behaviors, and emotions. Understanding yourself is the first step in making decisions that will propel you forward in the direction you want.

Self-efficacy is the belief in your capability to do something; it is believing in your skills to achieve a goal. Developing self-efficacy is about becoming competent and confident at the same time, two qualities you need to grow your mental strength.

Self-determination is taking ownership of your choices, motivation, and direction. As you zig and zig toward adulthood, you’ll discover the beauty and challenges of having agency over your decisions. Humility and pride can both be found in the wake of self-determination.

Like resilience coaching, well-being coaching is non-directive, person-centered, strength-based collaborative support with an evidence-based foundation. Clients can expect a conversational and goal-oriented coaching engagement, as determined by their needs and wants. There may be action steps to take between sessions to allow for new-skill practice.

Career Discovery Coaching

Facing the prospect of making college or job decisions? Choosing which study path or career direction to take can be a daunting task, especially for dance students who have spent countless hours in the studio honing their skills, fully dedicated to dance but not yet considering the long-term future. Since work is an opportunity for independence to flourish—and since most adults spend roughly one-third of their waking hours at work—it is paramount to consider studies and career paths that meet one’s psychological, social, and economic needs and contribute to overall life satisfaction and well-being.

Through our coaching engagement, I help clients boost their self-awareness, explore their temperament, strengths, and values, and determine what a positive, mutually good fit looks like for higher education or the workplace. Together, we partner to find clarity in the possible career pathways that will lead to a fulfilling work life.

Career discovery coaching may also be helpful if you are a young adult looking to make a career change within the dance industry, or into a new industry, or if you are looking to reduce work stress, increase motivation, or enhance your work-life balance. During our coaching engagement, I can facilitate personality and strength assessments, as well as job-fit and environment-fit considerations.

Between sessions, “homework” might include participating in personality or strengths tests and/or researching higher education institutions or trade schools, major courses of study, or specific careers. I will partner with you to determine what would be most insightful during our process.