Every day you’re bombarded with stuff that requires paying attention.

Even though you know you can remember to do school assignments or meet deadlines, you still forget until it’s almost too late. That forgetfulness creates so much stress.

Writing things down feels stupid, especially after the arguments with your parents or teachers about why you didn’t think it was necessary.

You’ve kept everything in your head just fine or your phone if it seemed important.

But it’s dawning on you that your brain is running out of storage space, and you need to get more. There must be a Plan B that looks like you would do it all along.

There’s a desire bubbling below the surface.

Reading about content that doesn’t seem to matter, doing well on tests, taking the “right” classes, grades – and teachers, parents, college counselors, and admission who push all the time about how important these things are – are not making it more manageable. How do you figure out why you’re doing all of it and how you can use it to move forward toward the goals you’re beginning to see for yourself?

Trying to figure out your “why” for doing things started long ago when you were little. It was simpler then; you wanted a toy, so you got it. Or you asked for ice cream, not broccoli.

Becoming a high school student has multiplied the number of “whys” you need to figure out. Figuring out the whys will help you feel less like trying to stay afloat in an ocean and more like you know where the lane in the pool is.

Once you find the lane, you can see where to swim. Then, it’s time to work on what stroke works the best to get you there.

Even before COVID it was a pain to put your hand up in class.

The teachers seemed judgmental, and you always thought you heard snickering behind you.

It feels like you’re invisible, even though you know what’s happening in class.

No one likes public speaking – many people say that. And asking a question is the first step toward giving a speech.

It can be a real surprise to find change starts with a few how-tos. And it is an even bigger surprise when you realize people genuinely understand what you are asking.

You feel the struggle!

Drama about how tough and terrible it is to be a “young person” is everywhere – in the media, in your school, and on your phone. There are so many parts of the school, friend groups, and making good choices after high school that could go better.

Seeing a therapist would help with the stress, but how about fixing your daily life?

Coaching isn’t just for sports teams. But, just like a sports team, a coach helps you figure out your goal, what you need to know, and the best strategy to get there. There’s no he-said, she-said drama or complaining about how unfair the teacher or your parent is. And there’s a definite emphasis on building up confidence.

About Me

You are not alone – I’ve been there, too.

As your coach, I don’t change who you are; we work on changing what doesn’t work for you. Now, I look out of my window in New York City or the Adirondacks and remember looking out at a cornfield or the parking lot outside my high school when I was a teenager.

My goal was not to be there but to find people who led more interesting lives than mine seemed to be. My journey didn’t include climbing ladders; it’s been more climbing up a big hill with holes, dips, small rock formations, and the occasional stream.

Rather than displaying my neatly arranged degrees and certifications, I share my stories, packed full of strategies that worked and experiences I can draw from to help you move forward.

Ask me about my days as a SUNY resident director or my take on teens staying safe in a world with sex, drugs, and guns.

What’s it like to work with me?

I’ll ask you a lot of questions. You’ll answer some of them easily, and others will leave you feeling awkward. (I know about feeling awkward.)

We will work on who you are, using tools that I know how to use, and soon, you will learn how to use them, too.

You’ll have a different view of what stresses you daily and find you’re becoming more independent and smiling more.

My coaching will bring out a better version of you, whoever you are now.

My past makes me who I am today.

I grew up in a rural area of Michigan, in a family of good people focused on not being late, not leaving messes, and not getting too far off the path. This wasn’t a great fit for my quirkiness and curiosity.

My audacity helped me get into UMichigan where I finished my degree by the grace of God. I had little idea about how to do what I wanted, so I just started taking steps in many directions.

It sounds scary now, but those days were the beginning of my brilliant life. I realize now how important meeting people, learning about the context of their life, and adding that to my own story has been.

Instead of working in a company or climbing a ladder, I’ve collected opportunities to help solve problems. The upside is all the places I’ve spent time in; the downside is sharing this succinctly with others at dinner parties.

When I’m not working…

Oh yeah, the fun stuff. I love listening to classic rock, pop, and the occasional country song. Watching documentaries is a huge passion (reality has a thrill).

It’s hard to beat when the fly-over happens in UMichigan’s Big House unless it’s the football win at the end.

I like to end my hikes in the Adirondacks with a mocha.

I love traveling with my family!

I’m married to a man who matches my creativity and quirkiness with purpose and great questions. My marriage and our children are my life’s greatest blessings.

To those who receive great treasure, much is expected.