Today I had a meeting with a dating and relationship coach. Not because I need help with either of those things (been happily married to the Silver Fox for 31 years now!) – but to network. Iris Sirianni and I met recently at a networking event and both of us knew immediately that we shared a similar vibe so we wanted to get to know each other better. I try to meet and learn about fellow coaches whenever I can so that I can confidently refer potential clients who need other kinds of help than what I offer.
After our meeting, I got thinking about all the things I’ve learned – and continue to learn – from the coaches I know and have worked with and those learnings have been, quite frankly, priceless.
Last year, I hired a business coach and believe me, before working with her, my idea of a coach was somewhere between hard-ass personal trainer Jillian Michaels and personal development guru Tony Robbins. I now know that there are many coaches who specialize in many things, so it’s important that you find one who you connect with and who can help with your specific issue.
So, whether you’re looking for help with making a career change – which I can help with – or you’re looking for love and a successful relationship (which my colleague Iris can help with), working with a coach may be just the tool you need.
What I learned
Here are the lessons I’ve learned from working with a coach.
- Think big picture. Our day-to-day lives are so jam packed that it can be difficult to see the forest for the trees. Our minds are so preoccupied with what’s happening today, that it can be really difficult to even think about where we’ll be or what we’ll be doing next week, next month or next year. Working with a coach can give you that “30,000 foot view” of your life and career. A coach can often see what’s coming around corners that you didn’t even know were there. They provide perspective to help you get in touch with your vision for your life and the roadmap for how to get there.
- No more overanalyzing alone in your own head. Working with a coach helps you get a deeper understanding of who you are and what you want. Having someone to talk these things through with and having someone to be accountable to can be incredibly helpful. Worksheets (or playsheets, as I like to call them!), exercises, journaling prompts, assessments, reading/podcast recommendations, and email support are all extra tools that add to what your coach can provide while you’re working with them.
- You’re in control. While working with a coach can be powerful to jumpstart things and motivate you, your coach can only help you as much as you’re willing to help yourself. Your coach will be there to champion your dreams and desires, but you are actually the one who does the work. Think of your coach as your golf caddy – they can help you understand the environment, point out where the bunkers and traps are and select a club for you, but you are the one who takes the swing and makes the shot.
- All coaches are not created equal. I was blessed to work with an amazing business coach this past year. But it wasn’t her stellar credentials and education or her program that got me to enroll with her. It was the trust and connection I felt immediately upon talking to her. A coach is there to support you in a no-nonsense, no-hand-holding kind of way, but if you don’t trust the person and there’s no connection, your chances of achieving the results you’re after will be greatly diminished. That’s why I ask potential clients to get on a complimentary discovery call before we agree to work together. I want to make sure we’re an incredible fit. During the discovery call we get to know each other, dream together about their vision for their career and life, map out a plan to move their career and life forward and decide whether working together will be a right fit. And if we’re not, I know other incredible coaches who I joyfully refer them to.
- The Universe rewards action. This came as a surprise to me and maybe it will to you too. Conventional wisdom says: wait until you have all your ducks in a row and then take action. But in my experience, it actually works the opposite of what we’ve been taught. My coach regularly challenged me to do things that I didn’t think I was ready for and might never have done otherwise, and I’m better for it. Now, when I reflect back at how my career has evolved, I realize that it’s only when I took action that the Universe recognized that I was ready to make a move and it responded by bringing people, events, and situations into my life to enrich the experience, help me grow and keep me moving forward.
So, if you’re sitting on the fence about whether or not a coach can help you, I hope you take my learnings to heart and realize that you are worth it.
And if you’re ready to get started working with a coach, apply for a no-strings, one-on-one discovery call and let’s find out if we’re a good fit.