1. You are on a Heroic Journey—By Definition

The teenage years are, by definition, a heroic journey. That may sound weird, but it is literally true. For you as a teenager it is the journey required to leave childhood behind and become a young adult. The heroic journey, for people of any age, is a process of maturing, developing, becoming more competent and complete. The teenager years are a journey of transforming from one way of being in the world (childhood) to another (young adulthood). 

Fortunately we have a story to make sense out of that experience and provide guidance in figuring out how to deal with it. That’s really good because the journey is unavoidable. 

You leave the childhood world you have known and cross a threshold into a world with a high degree of unknown where you face challenges that are physical, emotional, intellectual, social and sometimes spiritual in nature. 

You have to let go of old ways of thinking, acting and relating and master a stunning number of “new ways.” And you have to live in the land of “inbetweenity”—the land between letting go and new mastery. In fact, the teen years are mostly “inbetweenity.” The major authorship of your life shifts from the adults in your life to you—as does the responsibility for your life. It will probably be like a roller coaster with lots of ups and downs and be scary and exciting—and sometimes boring. 

For you as teenagers, that experience lasts for years. Most journeys in adulthood don’t last nearly as long as that of the teenage years—one reason why being a teenager can be so tough.


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