Youths who’ve been forced to shove their natural gifts underground need someone who can help them unearth their genius. Everyone has something about them that makes them shine, including the belligerent teenage boy, Bob, who is under arrest awaiting the arrival of a bail justice. This is the third time Bob has been arrested for stealing, and he’s already waiting for 2 other hearings to be scheduled. He couchsurfs because he can’t pay rent. No one will hire him because of his hostile nature. He doesn’t do drugs. He doesn’t drink. He’s tends to be argumentative because as a child he was constantly demoralised and no one appreciated his intelligence.
Bob lacks motivation.
What is the likelihood Bob will go after inspiration with a club? He has never dreamt of doing something creative. He has no idea he has a particular genius. There is nothing upon which he feels he can capitalise.
Someone might miraculously come into his life to help him get started—maybe a children’s court advocate might suggest just the thing he needs, or a relative might decide to give him a hand.
But even if this does happen, good advice is often overlooked in the face of overwhelming self-doubt. If no one is there to point out a person’s worth in the first 12 years of their life, it is very difficult to believe in oneself.
If throughout Bob’s childhood, it had been pointed out to him that he had a natural skill for relating to animals, for instance, he might have been inclined to volunteer at an animal sanctuary.
Maybe his belligerency is coming from being a frustrated public speaker. If he had been encouraged to develop his natural talent, he might have joined a Toastmasters club and become an advocate for a worthy cause or an inspirational speaker.
Bob' life can change direction; it’s a matter of unearthing his genius.
Frank Clancy writes about providing the tools necessary to encourage a child to make the most of their natural abilities. http://www.parenting.com/article/special-talents
My Turnz story - Different Ways
To make up for the dearth of attention at home, re-enacting the Different Ways story could be Bob’s first step to feeling inspired. It could be the first time he realises that he has a lot to offer, just as much as someone he admires. This realisation could become the ‘club’ with which he begins to go after inspiration.
The lesson in the Different Ways story encourages the wisdom of self-knowledge.
A young person who re-enacts the My Turnz stories which teach self-knowledge might say, “When I was little, I was told I was an embarrassment and would not amount to anything; I was told not to study because it would be a waste of time. I’ve fixed that now, I’ve proven that they were lies.”
The Different Ways story demonstrates how two people learn from each other rather than remain envious or jealous of the other’s talent. A young person who has learned from this story might say, “I’m a student of life and can teach others.”
It isn’t too late for Bob.
In her late twenties, Susan Biali discovered the power of her passion. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/prescriptions-life/201205/five-steps-finding-your-passion
Re-enacting the Different Ways story means that Bob would imagine himself in the story so he ‘sees’ and ‘feels’ himself in the situation—is in the story as much as he’s able. Short of it actually happening to him, it’s the closest he can get. A line is read to Bob, and Bob tells the line as if it is his story and is happening to him. He would start like this: “I’m making up a story about …”
Watch the video to find out how:
The Different Ways Story:
Let’s make up a story about someone you know at school who is really good at speaking in front of the class. He makes people laugh and is not afraid at all to give a report or raise his hand to answer questions. You’re not so comfortable. It isn’t easy for you to stand in front of the whole class and give a report. You do it, but you’re not comfortable doing it.
At lunch one day, you’re sitting at the same table as this boy. The boy sitting next to him starts to cry. His dog disappeared last week and he suddenly got really sad about it and just started crying. The boy who is good at speaking in front of the class stops eating and stares at the boy who is crying. You notice he can’t think of anything to say or do. He looks at you as if to ask for help.
You go over, sit on the other side of the boy who is crying, put your hand on his hand, and tell him everything is going to be okay. You tell him that his dog is probably with a nice family but just can’t find his way home and that one day maybe he can get another dog. You ask him if he wants to go to get a piece of cake with you. He stops crying and goes with you to get something sweet to eat. He feels so much better because someone helped him feel better.
After lunch, the boy who is confident to speak in class tells you that he admires you for what you can do to help someone like that. He says he wishes he could do that, but he can’t think of anything to say. You tell him you wish you could be confident like him when speaking in class. Both of you laugh.
TOPICS TO EXPLORE:
Talk about how good it felt to be able to soothe someone like that.
Talk about how great it is that the confident boy wishes he could be like you.
Talk about how you wish you could be like him. Describe how he could teach you to be confident in front of the class.
Describe how you could teach him to be compassionate towards others.