Kids Don’t Need to Be “Fixed”

This week’s article is by Stephen Wiedner, one of the co-founders of Noomii, a company dedicated to getting the word out about the great benefits of hiring a personal or professional coach. I hope you enjoy the article.

Kids are not like cars, behaviors are not like engine parts, and you can’t take your kid to the life coach “mechanic” to be fixed. It just doesn’t work that way. 

Parents naturally want to help and empower their children, but the good intentions of concerned moms and dads often create more problems when the “fix-it” mentality takes over. Kids get the impression that something about them is broken and needs fixing, and parents feel powerless to help them overcome their challenges.

 How Life Coaching Can Help

At Noomii, parents contact us because their children have high anxiety, ADHD, learning disabilities, difficulties in school, poor social skills, or a lack of confidence, direction, or motivation. Frequently, however, the parents must come to terms with their children’s challenges, quit trying to change them, and figure out how to move forward with them.

Barbara Fredrickson, positive psychologist and author of “Positivity,” developed what she calls the “broaden-and-build” theory. She sought to understand the purpose of emotions such as happiness and joy, and she concluded that “positive emotions promote discovery of novel and creative actions, ideas, and social bonds, which in turn build that individual’s personal resources.” Instead of putting your child in an environment of negative emotions by trying to fix him, look at what’s working well and help him build his physical and intellectual resources to deal with life’s challenges.

Life coaching is a forward-looking, goal-oriented process. It considers where you are now, where you want to go, and how to get there. Coaches can help a child achieve personal fluency and human agency proficiency by focusing on mindfulness, self-awareness, emotional and social intelligence, goal-striving behavior, and building self-esteem.

Leah B. Mazzola, a Noomii life coach for teens, said, “Helping the child understand first how and why he or she functions in a particular way — then introducing him or her to the malleable nature of self and the power of self-determination — sets the foundation for long-term success and life satisfaction.”

When You Need Parent/Family Coaching

In coaching, we find that every family struggles with its own unique set of issues that can manifest into larger problems in the home. Sometimes, parents disagree on how to handle difficult situations or siblings aren’t equipped to understand a brother’s or sister’s challenges. In these cases, family coaching can help establish an environment with:

  1. More empathy and understanding for one another

  2. Better communication between family members

  3. Better decision-making and agreements between all members of the family

No family is perfect, but the parents we work with all want the very best for their kids. Parents have strong instincts to protect their children, which fuels the desire to “fix” them. No life coach mechanic can do that, but a life coach can help children “broaden-and-build” their capacity to handle the challenges, bumps, and bruises along the way.

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