Frequently asked questions
WHAT ARE SOME EXPECTATIONS FOR YOUR TIME AT ATLAS LIFE?
How long will I stay at Atlas Life?
Atlas Life Spain works on a college calendar system, where students are committing to the entire length of the semester with the opportunity to stay for multiple semesters. Initially you will apply for a 6 month student visa, with the ability to reapply if you would like to stay longer. Ultimately, we want you to make whatever decision will leave you most prepared to take on the world!
Will I have roommates?
Yes! For many students coming to Atlas Life, the goal will be to enter, or re-enter college. Because of this, we want to replicate that similar experience of shared space. The houses are large, so there is plenty of room and time for personal space whenever desired. That being said, we encourage you to interact and engage with other students and staff as much as possible. We really want to create a "family" like atmosphere at Atlas Life.
What is your policy on alcohol?
The minimum drinking age in Spain is 18. If you are of legal age, responsible drinking is allowed outside of the Atlas Life house. The European relationship with alcohol tends to be much different than Americans, where one or two glasses of wine or beer while eating tapas with friends is appropriate. Drinking deemed excessive will be a topic of conversation with your coach as we encourage you to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Becoming drunk or belligerent is not tolerated at Atlas Life.
Will I have my tech?
Yes, you are allowed to bring your cellphones and laptops to Atlas Life. You will need your laptops for classes (yes, the house has wifi), and you will need your cellphones for communication with staff and students in the program, but also for communication with friends and family back home. Be mindful of the difference in time zones! We also encourage you to take pictures and post on social media. This is an incredible experience. We fully expect that you want to share information and pictures with those that you care about. Also, managing tech use is always a great topic for discussions with your life coach.
Can my family visit?
Sure! We expect you to fall in love with the Costa Del Sol and be proud of what you have accomplished while with us. If it ever makes sense for your family to come to Spain for a visit, we encourage you to show them around our beautiful city and introduce them to all the amazing pieces of Spanish culture that you are connecting with and embracing!
Do I need to be able to speak Spanish?
No. Prior to arrival, you will take an online assessment of your Spanish knowledge which will help us enroll you in the proper level for class. This could mean being conversationally fluent in Spanish to never speaking a word of Spanish before. We have the options and flexibility to meet you where you are and support you as you become more comfortable using the Spanish language.
Atlas Life students should have a strong desire to engage in the program, participate in the Spanish culture, work hard, and be open to trying new things. You are expected to get out of bed in the morning, participate in your classes, join resume building activities, and take advantage of everything that this amazing opportunity has to offer.
Atlas life is not a therapeutic program and would be inappropriate for those individuals needing that level of support.
What is the history of Atlas Life?
Atlas Life had its informal beginnings in 2007 and kept building over time until the team decided to expand services and open additional locations in May of 2013.
In the beginning, people came seeking Life Coaching support specific to being more efficient in the grit, resiliency, and rigor of traditional college education while paying their way through college. Others came seeking guidance in entrepreneurship, apprenticeships, career development in the workforce, international cultural service and personal growth.
Today, through the motivational interviewing portion of the Tatori System, most student goals fall into one or more of five specific tracks:
1. Traditional high school and college education (PARC Services)
2. Non-traditional experiential education and career
4. Independent financial freedom
5. Personal goal development (Clinical Services, Yoga, Meditation, Personal Education, etc.)
6. International Study Abroad, GAP Year, Domestic and International Service Missions, etc.
Today, there are several geographic locations that young adults can pick from. While each location is independently owned and operated, the directors and owners of each location have adopted the Tatori Method and the clinically informed life coaching model for their location.
What if my “dreams” include things like international service, a GAP year, or starting my own business?
We love to do business coaching and assist those seeking to start their own businesses, international cultural immersion experiences, career-based apprenticeships, investments, crowdfunding, marketing strategies, finances, taxes, etc.
For those who wish to incorporate an international GAP experience into their goals, Atlas Life has programs that include a multitude of countries including Peru, Costa Rica, Mexico, various countries in Africa, Nepal, Europe, New Zealand and some unique places closer to home like Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico and Indian Reservations.
What is the average length of stay?
In our locations located in the United States, where young adults engage in everything from formal education to building their own businesses, to creating self-reliance, the average time of our young adults living in housing provided by Atlas Life is eight to 18 months.
Time, experience and years of outcome follow up show, that most young adults spend the first 3 to 6 months learning and going up and downs in their overall progress before starting to put all the puzzle pieces together in ways that it sticks and last. (What we call level 2 Tatori).
Young adults typically also utilize our step-up services after establishing their own housing.
Young adults taking advantage of opportunities overseas in GAP year experiences typically spend four to six months and then transfer to another Atlas Life location in the United States or directly into an independent educational or independent living based on their own goals.
Unless pre-arrangements have been made and agreed to in advance, each student is expected to commit to at least 90 days. This three-month commitment is based on historical outcomes that show that actual results for most young adults are based on the following:
1. Adult like relationships that transfer from a parent-child relationship to adult-coaching relationships.
2. Overwhelming mastery life experiences that build self-efficacy that transfer into real-life results.
3. Enough time to produce what Atlas Coaches refer to as the power of habit or level II Tatori. (Students that thrive the most combined level 2 and level 3 Tatori).
The average length of stay is largely dependent upon the specific goals and which one of the five to six tracks that the Life Coaching student is pursuing. We can answer this question more fully after the Life Coaching student interviews have taken place in the admission process.
Using the Tatori method of strength-based personal empowerment, we assist our students in not only achieving self-reliance we also assist them in learning to thrive in life.
Depending upon individualized goals and which of the five tracks a student is signed up for will determine the needed length of time. For example, a student who is in a college or entrepreneurial track may take longer than a student who is on a financial independence track.
Atlas life is based on the premise that peace comes into our lives when self-reliance and independent living becomes sustainable within a chosen life map. In order to reach “sustainable self-reliance,” it is essential that each young adult not only learns tangible daily habits but that certain thinking patterns and paradigms must also shift. Whatever your past situation may have been, we focus on learning from the past, loving our present life, and building a sustainable future with real results. Real results do take time – the length of time it takes is completely up to how hard you work and how focused you stay every day.
Why a 90 day minimum?
Change, growth, education, and outcomes are a process of time combined with grit, work, productive hours in a week, executive functioning, intrinsic and extrinsic motivators, and more.
Most young adults (around 80%) take 3 to 6 months before they start to move from level one Tatori into the power of habit or level two Tatori.
Twenty percent or 1 out of 5 young adults hit the ground running and move very quickly into level two and level three within weeks.
If a young adult is of legal age, can they openly use E-Cigs, tobacco, and alcohol?
Upon arrival, we ask all of our Life Coaching students to refrain from “distractions” for the first 90 days. Our systems and research have found that much of our outer success comes from personal habits, nutrition, exercise, meditation, visualization, daily education, etc.
After 90 days, a team meeting will ensure to discuss how you are achieving your primary goals and if introducing these things back into your life will change your stated goals. Our goal is to minimize distractions in first few months until other key elements and personal daily success habits are in place.
Can I date while in Altas Life?
After the first 90 days and after each student has solid, measurable progress moving in their own Tatori goals, we encourage dating, social life in the community, and more!
Atlas Life coaches know that the friends you hang out with the most are a major part of predicting your future success. In fact, most Atlas Life coaches are bold enough to say things like, show me your friends and who you are dating, and I can tell you your future.
Our coaches can connect you with relationship and dating coaches and some outstanding experiences on how to attract the right people into your life!
In fact, if dating and having relationships is important to you, we want to help you!
One rule: Atlas Life students are highly discouraged from dating other Atlas Life students.
You have the whole world to date! Please don't interfere with the process of other students.
However, if you really feel the desire to date other Atlas Life students, we are happy to engage the two of you in our relationship coaching classes immediately!
Do you drug test?
YES! We do drug testing for a number of reasons. We have learned that in order to benefit from the Tatori Life Coaching Method that illegal drugs have no place. Also, Atlas networks with international GAP partners, apprenticeships in the local communities, colleges, landlords, etc and has a reputation of having quality Life Coaching students who have been screened, and are ready to work.
What would get me expelled from Atlas Life?
1. If a student needs a clinical higher level of care.
2. If a student's behavior is negatively impacting other students and needs a higher level of care.
3. Trouble with the law will be reviewed.
4. Self-care and safety for self, property, or for others in the community will result in a higher level of care.
5. Parental support is not strong enough for the process or parents withheld or lied in the admission process in order to get their student admitted.
Since 2013 to June of 2020, 6 students have been moved to a higher level of care and returned to Atlas Life after getting additional short term help. Three (3) or .001 students from all locations have been moved to a higher level of care and have not returned. As of June 30, 2020, no student has reached a point of behavioral mis-conduct to be expelled from Atlas Life and sent home.
Can I have my own car?
That depends on the location. Please call us to review.
In some locations where a car is allowed, it is typically not allowed for the first 90 days and other specific goals are worked out in your Tatori, finanical coaching and partnership with your investors/parents.
Atlas Life does have a strict policiy about no student can drive another student at anytime. There are liabilities and other goals that prohibite this. Violation of this rule will result in car keys and car being removed until integrity and trust can be re-established.
By choosing to enroll and participate in Atlas Life participants agree to the following:
The release of liability. As legal adults, you are expected to be responsible for your safety. You agree to release any location doing business under the name of Atlas , its agents, and employees from any claims or liabilities of any kind whatsoever, arising from or related to my participation in these activities. You may be required to sign your own liability releases for specific activities in the local community such as taking surf lessons, rock climbing and a wide range of other options.
By enrolling in Atlas Life, you agree to grant to any business doing business under the Atlas name and its authorized representative’s permission to record on photographic film and/or video, pictures of my participation. You further agree that any or all of the material photographed may be used, in any form, as part of any future publications, social media, brochure, or other printed materials used to promote Atlas or to share your experiences with others, and further that such use shall be without payment of fees, royalties, special credit or other compensation.
Participation in Research
Atlas Life takes part in research projects in conjunction with local Universities and conducts it’s own outcome studies.