Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

Life Coaching for Teens: Section I - Part I - Building Confidence Is Foundational

The purpose of life is a life of purpose. – Robert Byrne

I. INDIVIDUALITY: There’s no one else exactly like me

Of the 6 billion people in the world there is no one exactly alike. Some people may look alike but if you examine each person more closely you will find differences in physical appearance, personality, intellectual ability and many other areas; even biological twins are not exactly alike. This is the mystery of diversity. As an individual, you are very unique, injected with many qualities attributed only to you. This is what I call “individuality”.

Let’s look at the following list of possibilities:

1. Genetics: Height, weight, size, hair, eye and skin color, facial and body features.

2. Personal History: Culture, family traditions; personal likes and dislikes, etc.

3. Emotional / Social Makeup: Temperaments; shy, overt, talkative, quiet, dominating, optimistic v. pessimistic, friendly, etc.

4. Mental Ability: Aptitudes levels in math, reading, writing, and science, etc.

5. Talents: Athletics, music, arts, communication, dance and technology, etc.

6. Belief Systems: Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindi, Atheist, no preference, etc.

This list is not comprehensive by any means but it will suffice for now:

Activation Exercise: Use this cloud to create a your own Wordle profile by writing single-words about yourself from the categories mentioned above:

I. IDENTITY: If no one else is exactly like me then who am I?

Here are some unique facts about the importance of personal identity:

• No one has the same fingerprints.

• No one has the same DNA code (Our genetic coding that dictates our unique qualities).

• No one has the same eye retina configurations.

Yet all these areas have something in common. Let’s examine each one in more detail.

A. Fingerprints

Fingerprints were used early in history. For instance, early history shows Babylonia and China using fingerprints during business transactions and on clay seals. Why? To authenticate a person’s identity. However, an interesting story emerged late in the 19th century when law enforcement officials tried to distinguish two identical crime suspects. Here’s the story:

Around 1870, French anthropologist Alphonse Bertillon devised a system to measure and record the dimensions of certain bony parts of the body. These measurements were reduced to a formula, which theoretically, would apply only to one person and would not change during his/her adult life. The Bertillon System was generally accepted for thirty years. But it never recovered from the events of 1903, when a man named Will West was sentenced to the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas. It was discovered that there was already a prisoner at the penitentiary at the time, whose Bertillon measurements were nearly the same, and his name was William West. Upon investigation, there were indeed two men who looked exactly alike. Their names were Will and William West respectively. Their Bertillon measurements were close enough to identify them as the same person. However, a fingerprint comparison quickly and correctly identified them as two different people.

This unique story proved that no two sets of fingerprints are the same. Since then law enforcement officials and other agencies have successfully used fingerprints as a way to identify crime suspects, criminals, and missing persons. Today, fingerprints are used to conduct background checks on employees who work with children, and those working in sensitive areas of government.


Blood or other human fluid samplings are taken from crime scenes, suspects and crime victims alike, to determine if a person was actually at the crime scene. This type of identification was popularized by the television drama series known as CSI (Crime Scene Investigation). In this drama series CSI team members converge upon a crime scene collecting blood samples for evidence or taking swabs of saliva from a suspect’s mouth. These samples are then analyzed at the crime lab to determine the perpetrator’s identity. A real life story reveals:

Using DNA to catch criminals has become common, but police in Denver, Colorado, this year demonstrated how the practice can be taken to a new level. Police tracked down a suspect not through his DNA, but through that of his brother. Here’s how it happened:

The Denver district attorney’s office said: In February 2008, two cars were broken into. Police found blood at both scenes and ran the samples through DNA databases but couldn’t find a match. Then, as part of a study being conducted by the district attorney’s office, investigators used new software to see whether the DNA in the blood was close enough to potentially be from a family member of someone in the criminal DNA database. The software came up with six potential matches. Five didn’t pan out, but one led police to a convicted car thief and, ultimately, that man’s brother, Luis Jaimes-Tinajero.

Can you imagine among the 6 billion people who currently live on this planet, no one has the same DNA? In other words, you won’t find two individuals whose DNA strands are exactly alike.

What does DNA say about you as an individual?

What does it say about your humanity in general?

C. Biometric Identification (Eye scans)

Another popular identification device is known as Biometric Identification (most notably known as retinal scanning), which is used to identity individuals by examining their eyeballs. I was made more aware of this process during the movie Minority Report with Tom Cruise acting as Chief John Anderton. The movie projects how law enforcement will apprehend “would-be” criminals in the year 2051. At one point in the movie, as John is avoiding capture, he encounters retinal billboard scanners, which upon detection can speak directly to him. In the article Does Minority Report Portray a Scary Future, author Jack Aaronson explains it this way:

For those who haven’t seen the movie, the relevant part for this article is the depiction of electronic billboards and displays. Using a retinal scanner, the billboards (such as those on the walls of a subway) call out the name of the passerby. One ad, for American Express, shows the passerby’s name on an American Express card, with the “Member Since” field dynamically updated to reflect that person’s membership. A Guinness ad speaks to Tom Cruise’s character as he walks by, saying, “Hey, John, you look like you could use a Guinness!” The most interesting example, however, is when Cruise’s character walks into a Gap store. The ad welcomes him back and asks if he enjoyed the shirts he previously purchased.

At one point in the movie Tom Cruise, acting as Chief John Anderton, has surgery to change his eyeballs to avoid detection by these public scanners. The point I’m making is that retinal scans are becoming widely used but most importantly it is another way of seeing yourself as a unique individual.

Have you ever examined your own eyes, and thought about how unique you are as an individual?

So you see, even the most intricate human attributes show conclusive evidence that no two individuals are exactly alike. These tests prove that each one of us is unique and special; one of a kind.

Identity is the most important concept for teens to grasp. If a person doesn’t know who he or she is, they won’t be able to access what the totality of life has to offer. Identity is defined by “as the condition of being oneself, not another.” Among teenagers frustration builds when they don’t take the time to know themselves. Benjamin Franklin, one of our Founding Fathers, once said, “There are three things extremely hard: steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.” When teenagers don’t take the time to seek and know “self” they fall into temptation to find a model or a hero to emulate. When none exists, these impressionable teenagers seek out the wrong role models to follow or fall into despair and depression.

So then, why is it difficult to bring people to place of self-discovery?

What happens when a person disengages from the process of self-discovery?

Source by Joel Garcia

Post a Comment for "Life Coaching for Teens: Section I - Part I - Building Confidence Is Foundational"