We had the good fortune of connecting with Renee Sinning and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Renee, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I’ve spent my entire career working with teenagers, the majority of it in the classroom as a high school math teacher. During that time I saw a lot of kids fall through the cracks, not getting the help or support they needed. Especially in terms of how they see themselves. As a math teacher I only had so many moments in a day to talk with them about life stuff, the things that really mattered – like how they feel about themselves, positive self-talk, knowing that doing their best was good enough, and that they were enough exactly as they are.

I did my best to build up their confidence and sense of self every chance I got. It’s amazing to see teenagers light up when they feel proud about themselves – even if that was just solving a math problem correctly have doing it wrong three times prior. Because the bottom line is, every teenager wants to feel seen, understood and valued. And they need that. Not just from others, but also from within.

So a few years prior to retiring from the classroom I became a certified life coach. At that time, I didn’t even know teen life coaching was a thing. I thought I’d be coaching adults. Fortunately life had other plans for me and kept giving me signs that I was not done working with teenagers.

And so now, I am a teen life coach and parent partner working with teenagers and their families all over the world. I’ve recently renamed my teen coaching business to Teen Esteem Academy because building up a teenager’s self-esteem, self-belief and self-worth is key to helping them shine. They can do anything once they believe in themselves.

I help teens to realize they don’t have to settle for less than they deserve. We empower them to embrace their innate awesomeness and recognize they have choices in their life. They can choose what to believe and let go of (just because someone says something doesn’t make it true). They can choose who they want to be friends with (not everyone deserves their time and energy). They can choose how they show up in every situation. Bottom line, I help teens to shine and there is nothing more special than seeing a teenager leave our time together feeling good about who they are and confident to go out and live life.

This is why I’ve started Teen Esteem Academy. Because every teenager deserves to be happy. Every teen WANTS to be happy. Sometimes they just need a bit of help along the way, and these very important tools and strategies of building up their self-esteem, self-belief and confidence is often overlooked in school curriculums. I had a “fall through the cracks kid,” so not only have I seen this in my students, but have also experienced it personally. Teenagers deserve more.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
The biggest chunk of my career, prior to becoming a certified teen life coach and parent partner was as a high school math teacher. It was through those years that I really found my love of helping teens find success, both in the classroom and in life. I’m not quite sure why, but I really “get” teenagers, and am so passionate about helping them find their way. Maybe it’s because as a teenager myself I was quite shy and uncomfortable in my own skin. It took until probably my late 20’s before I really came out of my shell. And I often wonder what might have been different if I’d of believed in myself and not been so worried about what others thought.

My journey to where I am today began with a B.S. degree in Math. From there I got a Master of Education and began my teaching career. It spanned a little of 18 years, but over the course of about 30 years as I took time off here and there while raising our three kids. And then a few years before retiring from the classroom, I became a certified coach through Ipec (the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching). Once I stepped foot in the coaching classroom, I KNEW that this is exactly what I was meant to do for my act 2 after teaching.

Coaching for me was the most natural transition to my second career, as I feel like I have been coaching teenagers my entire career. In fact, I used to tell my math students, “I’m not just your math teacher, I’m also your life teacher.” And that was before I even knew coaching was a thing! I often put inspiring quotes on the board, and had real “life” conversations with my students, always encouraging them to try their best, make good choices, and believe in themselves.

The transition from teaching to teen life coaching definitely had some challenges. But those challenges were only prevalent in the business aspect. Coaching teens and working with parents has always been very natural for me, but running a business was a whole new ball game (that’s why I mentioned so many people in my shoutout!). No matter, this is the right path for me.

I love helping and supporting teenagers. I love working and supporting parents. I can’t imagine doing anything else. I feel extremely fortunate and honored to have families who trust me with their children, and I always give 120% to each of my clients. There is nothing more rewarding than having a teen tell me, “Thank you, Renee, that was really helpful.”

Here’s what I want the world to know:

Teenagers WANT to be happy. They also WANT to have a good relationship with their parents. Sometimes they just need a little help along the way.

No teenager wants to feel sad, angry, stressed, or any other negative emotions. But, unfortunately, they are not often taught the tools and skills they need to build their self-esteem, confidence and motivation. A lot of what parents see on the outside (anger, frustration, arguing) is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a reason teens have attitude or are acting the way they are. And those reasons are the key to positive change.

This is where teen life coaching comes in. I work with teenagers to help them improve self-esteem and self-belief. We help them to build their confidence and motivation so they can get stuff done. We work together to rewrite negative stories that keep them stuck and empower them to tap into their innate awesomeness (that every teenager possesses). Teen Life Coaching is an effective modality of support for the right teenager, as it is focused on forward progress and taking action. We might visit their pain, but we don’t sit there. They gain self-awareness, tools, strategies, and empowerment to move forward and find their successes in a relatively short amount of time.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
We’ve moved six times, but since we now live in Colorado Springs this is an easy questions. We would do multiple hikes to the Garden of the Gods, probably another hike in Ute, and perhaps get over to North Cheyenne Canon Park. We would visit some of my favorite coffee shops like Jives in Old Colorado City, and the Exhange on Tejon. We’d definitely have lunch at Swirl in Manitou and probably also visit Pizzeria Rustica in OCC. Because the Springs is like 3 towns in one (Downtown – Tejon area, OCC, and Manitou), we’d be at all three multiple times. If we wanted to do a longer day trip, maybe we’d go down to Canon City to the Royal Gorge Bridge, or stop by the Broadmoor for a little fancier (yet not pretentious) lunch.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My shoutouts would go to the many coaches that I’ve crossed paths with along the way, both local and international. So can I shout out more than one?! Those who helped me initially on this path as a Teen Life Coach goes to Anthony Kirby (Brisbane) and Lauren Cosgrave (CA). I wouldn’t have built The Empowered Parent Podcast with Renee without the support and encouragement (and a little push) from Kirby. I wouldn’t have all my tech stuff situated without Lauren. More recently I’ve found an amazing community of support in the teen coaching niche through my newest coach Lenita Abouchabake (Sydney). Now if we are talking more locally, the amazing Frank Sinclair and Lisa Lavergne afforded me the opportunity to be a co-author on the recently released book called Your Personal Life Coach, which is a perfect companion for just about everyone!

Website: https://www.reneesinning.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/renee_sinning_teencoach/?hl=en

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/renee-sinning-93661056/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/renee.sinning

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCy03yDgZNk3CyJgkNL8GaAQ

Other: The Empowered Parent Podcast (with Renee): https://empoweredparentpodcast.buzzsprout.com/

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutColorado is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.