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Postcards from Scotland

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Carol Craig is the Centre's Chief Executive. She is author of The Scots' Crisis of Confidence, Creating Confidence: A Handbook for Professionals Working with Young People, The Tears that Made the Clyde: Well-being in Glasgow and The Great Takeover: How materialism, the media and markets now dominate our lives. Her latest book is Hiding in Plain Sight: Exploring Scotland's ill health. She is Commissioning editor for the Postcards from Scotland series. Carol blogs on confidence, well-being, inequality, every day life and some of the great challenges of our time. The views she expresses are her own unless she specifically states that they reflect the Centre's thinking.

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Posted 24/06/2005

We had another networking event this afternoon. This time in Edinburgh. Good turn out and more men. In fact one of the things that was heartening about today is that there were a number of youngish men there who are involved in the coaching/personal development world. One of them – Sandy Newbigging – led one of the four workshops which were part of the session. He has devised a training programme on confidence for young people. He is only in his early 20s himself and he thinks that it is easier for young people to relate to him and I’m sure he’s right. However, he also says that a number of older people have been slightly contemptuous of his desire to go into this line of business until he had more experience and ‘grey hair’. This made me think of something I learned on Martin Seligman’s positive psychology course. A few studies have been done on wisdom and age and they’ve concluded that wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with life experience. Some young people are wiser than many old people ever are. Wisdom is about taking an all round view. It is about balancing and weighing a number of factors. It is also about being insightful and perceptive. It is an approach to life that some people learn early and others never achieve. In the words of the Scottish novelist Tobias Smolett: “Some folks are wise and some are otherwise.”

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