Kids are struggling—we must reach them early!
When Michael was 10 years old, he had the opportunity that every young baseball player dreams of!
It was the bottom of the last inning, the bases were loaded, only one out, and the game was tied.
He had a chance to win the game for his team!
The pitcher threw the first pitch—STRIKE 1. The pitcher threw the second pitch— STRIKE 2. The pitcher threw the third pitch and CRACK—the ball went flying right to the shortstop and the double play was over in a matter of seconds.
There was a huge moan from the crowd and Michael slumped back to the bench mumbling, “I’m such a loser. I quit.” Michael was humiliated and he no longer wanted to play baseball.
You have probably seen something like this happen before. It may not have been a baseball game––but some event in life where you, your child, or someone you cared about faced a big disappointment and just wilted before your eyes.
When faced with challenges or disappointments, most kids don’t have the tools to handle them.
As a result, they often get down on themselves or give up on themselves—developing belief systems that can hold them back for the rest of their lives. This crushes self- esteem and it crushes self-confidence.
Life events can “wound” children and most of the time their parents don’t even realize it. They might see a shift in their child’s confidence or self-esteem, but they don’t know what happened or what to do about it.
And most of the time kids won’t tell because they are too embarrassed. They don’t want their parents, the people they love the most, to think less of them. Instead they cry themselves to sleep, often suffering in silence.
And a lot of kids are struggling.
Did you know that:
● 30% of tweens (children between the ages 10-12) experience headaches and difficulty sleeping as a result of stress.1
● 25% of children between ages 13 and 18 experience anxiety disorders.2
● 10% of children are actually diagnosed with depression before the age of 18.3
The World Health Organization reported that depression is “the predominant cause of illness and disability” for children and teens age 10 to 19-years-old, worldwide. The statistics are even more staggering when you consider the report found suicide to be the third leading cause of adolescent deaths (behind traffic accidents, and HIV/AIDS).4
Something is clearly not working when one child in every ten (10%) is clinically depressed by the time they reach adulthood.
And when suicide is the third leading cause of death, worldwide, for children between the ages of 10-19.
Regardless of country, ethnic background, culture, or religion, millions of kids are struggling with how they feel about themselves day-to-day.
We must reach kids at an earlier age to help them develop resilience, self-confidence, and self-leadership skills, so they can handle the ups and downs of growing up.
And life coaches for kids can help!
1 Psychology Today, “Is Your Child Stressed Out? Why You May Not Know.”
2 National Institute of Mental Health: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/statistics/1ANYANX_child.shtml 3 Time Magazine Article, “The Happiness or Pursuit”, July 2013 http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2146449,00.html
4 “WHO calls for stronger focus on adolescent health,” May 2014