The Mentor’s Workbook – Mentoring Young Adults: Introduction

The Mentor’s Workbook – Mentoring Young Adults: Introduction

written by: Ken Rabow
by: Ken Rabow
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Hello. My name is Ken Rabow. I am the Mentor's Mentor for Troubled Teens, Young Adults and their Families. My goal is to train people who love mentoring young adults and give them the tools to become a Professional Mentor.

What's the difference? It takes a special person to Mentor Troubled Teens and Young Adults but it takes a system to create a whole life approach to helping young adults and their families truly succeed on all levels: Scholastically, Relationally, Emotionally and with a true belief in oneself.

This is what the World Wide Youth Mentoring (WWYM) Inc system does. This is the system I have created over the past 25 years.

I have worked with countless young people who have made great changes for the better in their lives. Changes where they were responsible for the successful outcome. These successes are now part of who they are and how the see themselves and shall help guide them in whatever endeavors they take on in life.

The goal of this Workbook is to help you become such a mentor to young adults.

If you follow this process (in tandem with my book: The Slacker's Guide To Success) you will find yourself helping young people to find their personal greatness. I cannot think of a nobler task or one that I consider to be more honorable to be part of.

Most systems of "repairing young adults" that I encounter seem to be focused on the symptoms. They use their challenges to define the whole of the person. Statements such as: "I'm ADHD". Hello, my name is Skeeter and I'm an alcoholic." "I'm such a (fill in the blank)" ring throughout the land.

To those who spend so much time on their symptoms, I would suggest you think of the following: We amplify what we focus on, in word, thought and action. The more frequently we are defining ourselves by what we lack, the more we allow our inner thoughts to validate our beliefs in our million micro-decisions of the day.

We cannot underestimate the amount of people who are in denial about their personal foibles. I am not suggesting self-delusion as a the road to success. I encourage you to (and by extension the young adults you mentor) to "own" their challenges as well as their strengths, but please do not let these young adults be defined by their challenges.

Let me share with you my belief, my mindset and my intention for mentoring based on my Mentoring of Young Adults since 2001:

Every young person I have ever met has the ability to be successful in every way of their lives. That may seem like a bold statement but the truth is, evolutionarily speaking, if you are alive, then you are doing something right. You must also come from a line of people who were able to thrive. The DNA of success is built into you. It just may present itself in a way that doesn't fit into a standard mold. What may seem like the opposite of success may simply be indicators to look for a different way, to find your own personal way to succeed.

The Slacker's Guide to Success is once such way. It works by building up a person's belief in themselves in quiet daily tasks that help build character. It is in the small daily tasks one does away from public view that we build up our own faith in ourselves and it is these same small tasks that have been taken away from this generation.

Shining shoes? – Velcro! Tying your shoe laces – More Velcro! Cutting the lawn? – no more lawns – robot lawn mowers – or paid help. Washing the dishes? Dishwashers! Vacuuming – Roomba! Getting the mail (what's mail? Oh! That stuff before texting!) Spelling (duh ... spellcheck!) Multiplication tables (do calculators have those?) Walking the dog (did kids ever really walk the dog?) Homework (isn't that what tutors are for?)

I won't go on. It's too depressing. :-(

What daily tasks will inspire young people to learn self-discipline, build character and belief in oneself?

Since the "old ones" are gone. They need to be replaced with new ones. (Not that new): 1: Self-reflection. 2. Exercise. 3. Creativity 4. Generativity.

I will elaborate on these in chapter one.

Although I say that each person has the potential for success and that I have found my system to be highly effective, it does not mean that I work with every person who comes to interview with me or that they all stay the course and succeed using the World Wide Youth Mentoring system.

When parents seek my help for a troubled teen or young adult, they often find me through one of my articles at Huffington Post, or from our sister website for Mentoring Young Adults.

Once we have determined that this system could be a good fit for a potential client (ages 12 to 28) we then begin the first 8 sessions which will determine if the program truly works for the new client. If you are trained in our system, you will eventually reach my success ration, of those I accept on the sixth session of 95%!

What does this mean for the young adults?

It means that each one has in them the seeds for success and the challenge is to find the proper system for that particular person. Often, when someone I have worked with has risen above their addictions and gone back to school and succeeded well (very often for the first time) I will get referrals from friends. The chance of my particular system being right for that friend at that particular time is 50/50. The determining factor is; is this person ready?

Now, let's talk about you. What you need to bring to this system and how you can determine when your "client" is ready for your mentoring.

Who knows your child better than their parents? They do. They may not know it or share all of it with them but a parent's understanding of their child is based on history. More than likely, theirs is about right now and tomorrow. The past is often the same place where broken toys reside. Rich and meaningful at one time, but now it is mainly of use for stubbing toes and tripping us up.

It is in the future and the now that we must begin the Hero's Journey of Success with our clients.

Stay tuned for part two!