How are your New Year’s resolutions working out? Still going to the gym, eating healthy, and spending more time with family? No? Would you consider enlisting a coach to help you keep them? A coach is someone who helps you to improve your performance in whatever area needs work such as your health, your life, and finding a job. A good coach won’t tell you what to do so much as help you to discover solutions to whatever it is you are working on. That way you will be more likely to make the changes you need to be successful.
I flukily ended up with a health coach a little over two years ago, and working with her has changed my life! I had been contemplating opening a business, and found myself walking around town, looking into windows of commercial establishments, and imagining mine in that space. I thought that the shop that was home to Omstead on Lawn Avenue would be perfect. My husband suggested that I reach out to Amy Cox, the owner of the business, to ask her if she had any plans to move out of her space. I wasn’t comfortable doing that. I figured I’d make an appointment and talk to her about my carbohydrate addiction.
When I arrived at Omstead, I was greeted with a hug and a hot cup of tea. Wow! That alone was worth it. I told Amy that my main reason for coming was that I wanted her space in order to open my business. She laughed and said she wasn’t going anywhere. After chatting for an hour, I chose to sign up and work with her. We would meet every other week.
She recommended that I take her fermenting class and I agreed to do so even though I had no idea what fermenting was or how it would help me. I didn’t even Google “fermenting” before I showed up at her house. This is where the notion of coaching comes in. Amy is a trained health coach and organic gardener, and I am not. I chose to listen to her and trust her to guide me. I recognize that I have my strengths in certain areas but in the realm of eating and exercising I need help.
Two years later, I have become a proficient cook, to the delight of my family. I have embraced a healthy way of eating and have begun to shed the weight that I never thought would come off. With Amy’s guidance, I opened Doodle Art & Design studio in a space around the corner from Omstead. Her willingness to share her experiences as a small business owner has been a huge help to me. I no longer need as much coaching with my eating, so I am basically on a maintenance program where I see her once a month.
There are all kinds of coaches out there that you can hire to help you when you get in a rut. A friend of mine, Dr. John Duffy, is a psychologist with a life coaching certification and the host of the Undue Anxiety podcast. This is what he said about being a life coach, “I enjoy coaching because it is very progressive and results and future-oriented. In therapy, we do a lot of working through and healing from the past. But I find with coaching, I see quick positive change in my clients’ lives. Integrating the two has made my practice far, far more productive.”
Because of the creative nature of my business, I’ve begun looking into getting certified as a creativity coach, which traditionally is a person who helps creative people accomplish their goals. My idea was to coach regular people who want to be more creative. While I haven’t gotten my creativity coaching certification yet, it is not going to stop me from giving you some free coaching on how to be more creative:
Take time to notice your surroundings, whether on a walk or doing chores, and let your thoughts percolate through your brain. If you like to do something creative, like write, alternate writing with the non-creative, editing. If you have a problem you are trying to solve, don’t obsessively turn it over in your brain, instead go cut the lawn, play ball with your kid, or chat with a friend. I guarantee the solution will come to you.
In addition to paid coaches, there are many people in your life who will coach you for free. My husband is my exercise coach and my business coach. My yogi sister is my mindfulness coach. She helps me keep balance in my life. If she suggests that I read a certain book, or start a meditation practice, I do what she says because I trust her and that is what coaching is all about.