We want to give you a gentle nudge to consider a coach approach to disciple making – CLICK HERE

Five shifts to empower your teenagers to become self-led adults

Shift #5 – Reflection to Action 

You may have been reading the previous four blogs that I wrote on the topic of five shifts that will help empower your teenager to become self-led adults.  Here are the first four shifts that we have previously covered:

Shift 1 – Shift from talker to listener

Shift 2 – Shift from the center to the side 

Shift 3 – Shift from casual interaction to a conversation with purpose 

Shift 4 – Shift from being the creator to co-create the agenda 

The fifth and final shift to make if you want to apply a coach approach to parenting your teenager is “shift from reflection to action”.

Bottom line: our kids are self-led, aware and have developed interdependent relationships with their peers and mentors. I guess the previous four shifts are a means to this end; but this final shift is the ongoing relationship that you have with your teen leading into adulthood and beyond.

Our eldest followed his passion for economics and is an economic analyst for a firm in Boston, MA. His primary interests are anit-trust cases to help combat larger companies from monopolizing an industry. Their firm draws clients from the medical, telecommunications, .com, high tech and computer fields. They are industry leaders. Any and all things related to intellectual property fall into the service the firm provides, to analyze data to create the strongest argument for law firms that seek their services.  

We refer to our youngest as an “old soul”. She is in her early 20’s and going on 45. She settled into university life, graduated with a degree in international development and is now at graduate school. Her focus is Education Policy with a unique emphasis on helping resource refugees who are on the move to avoid bad things in their country of origin. Her end goal is to identify the best means to provide education to these families whose lives have been disrupted and for some, never to be repaired.  Her “Why?” is compelling. Early in her education she spent a summer in Malaga, Spain to study the human sex trafficking. Due to the location of Malaga to northern Africa, the industry in Malaga has become the world leader. From her research, she concluded the best way to address the issue is prevention – which led her down the education policy track.

Today the tables have turned slightly.  We are now relating more and more – adult to adult. We still coach. Sometimes the tables are turned. Here are some guidelines we followed to make the shift from taking responsibility to empowering 

Key Question: How can I inspire a person to take action?


  • Challenge the other person to act
    • Do not allow the newest disciple to remain in a state of reflection.
  • Use questions to help a person articulate what they will do
    • Let questions do the heavy lifting.
  • Gain commitment from the other person
    • What are you willing to give-up to take this step?


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