Coaching can seem like a mysterious process if you haven’t experienced it.
Truth is, it can seem mysterious even if you have.
What is coaching?
Coaching can be described as a cycle of powerful conversations that lead to meaningful actions that produce life change.
Conversations + Action = Life Change
And yet, the support that we engage is only partially about the moment of service.
We hire a plumber, for example, to fix a leaking faucet. Could we learn how to fix it ourselves on YouTube? It’s possible. We might go buy the tools, spend hours jumping from videos to tinkering, maybe mopping up the puddle that formed when we thought we had turned the water all the way off without realizing there was a second valve in the linen closet.
Or we can bring in a person who has not just the tools but also the expertise to utilize them with efficiency, flexibility and thoughtfulness, a plumber who has worked on everything from artistically installed fixtures to jury-rigged PEX and knows how to adjust to this job, this leak, this system.
As it turns out, coaching isn’t so different from plumbing in this way.
Should we talk?
Talk is cheap, and this time it’s free! We know a lot of people offer free consultations that are just long, painful sales presentations. That’s not what this is. Let’s just talk and test the fit, no strings attached.
Here’s what I offer…
When you join me in a coaching collaboration, I bring a lifetime of learning – reading, studying, experimenting, and working with hundreds of people – to your challenges, your vision, your unique definition of a life well lived. Whether you’re showing up to fine tune an already-shiny internal landscape or to take first swings at a jagged and daunting inner world, I’m able to adjust to you, as an individual.
There are no mapped routes here. There is no right way to build your best life or self. There’s only the foundational information, discovered and rediscovered and tweaked over millennia of human exploration, and what it means to you and for you.
So, let’s update that equation from earlier to:
Conversations Millennia of Human Insight + Actions (That Honor You as an Individual) = Your Bigger Life and Badder Self
So are you ready, friend, to discover how the wisdom of the ages can propel you to your new age of fulfillment?
What is coaching for? What can it do?
Coaching is a collaborative process of defining goals, co-creating the strategies to move toward the goals, identifying and addressing obstacles along the way, and doing all of that while cultivating tools that will work forevermore, long after our collaboration wraps.
In my experience, coaching can do far more than people expect. I’ll use myself as an example: When I hired my first mentor coach, I set two goals for the coming six months. One: To identify the coach education program that fit me and enroll. Two: To begin to truly think of myself as a coach. With my coach’s support, I accomplished both of those and started working with my first clients within six weeks. We spent the remaining four and a half months refining my coaching skills and ramping up my business.
I have worked with people who:
- Came to coaching looking for support for a professional change and ended up doing that plus dramatically shifting their self-care habits and reconceptualizing their days to allow for more time with their family.
- Came to coaching to learn how to communicate more effectively with a spouse and left with a deeper and richer understanding of their values and how to enact them in their daily lives, leading to a sense of confidence, authenticity, and fulfillment.
- Came to coaching for help finding their groove in their new work-from-home arrangement and wrapped with that plus strategies for managing stress and anxiety.
- Came to coaching with a nagging sense of being overwhelmed and out of control of their life only to discover a deep sense of peace and play with the dynamic tension of honoring what is while moving toward what could be.
That’s a small and representative sample. Coaching can change your life; it’s only in the collaboration and the context of your wants, needs, and perspective that we discover just how much and in what ways.
Why would I go to a coach rather than a therapist?
The relationship between coaching and therapy is like a Venn diagram. There are a lot of issues and experiences that fit into that overlapping space where the circles meet including stress, anxiety, all of your emotions, old baggage, issues of identity, and more. Depending on the type of therapy (for example, cognitive behavioral therapy), both coaching and therapy can be very collaborative and action-oriented.
That said, I generally recommend that people explore therapy when:
- Their experiences of depression or anxiety are significantly impeding their ability to function in their daily lives.
- They have experienced a recent or particularly raw trauma.
- They prefer the provider to be the Absolute Expert in the room; in coaching, the coach is the expert of the process and the bringer of the tools and our mission is to support the client in acting more fully as the foremost expert of their own life and decisions.
If you’re feeling uncomfortable, anxious, stuck and/or eager to tap more fully into your own wisdom through the wisdom of the ages, coaching is likely to be a fantastic fit for you.
Why would I go to a coach rather than a consultant?
Much as with therapy, consultants are the Absolute Expert in the room. I tend to refer people to consultants when they’re seeking:
- Turnkey answers
- Spreadsheet-guided business development strategies
- The practitioner to do the execution for them
Or when they’re interested in professional progress without personal growth. No judgment or beef; I’m just not going to be the best fit.
I am a great fit, though, for those who are interested in exploring just how big Bigger can be, just how bad Badder can be – just how fulfilling this life can be.
Surely there is a process: What exactly is it that I get with my fee?
That depends, in part, on what approach we decide to take during our initial consult. For some folks, a brief and intensive engagement is exactly what’s called for. More often, however, folks committed to their biggest self and baddest life benefit from a more supercharged coaching experience that includes:
The Innerlings Intensive
You are rich in inner voices. I know because we all are when we really listen in. There are parts of us that have great wisdom and parts of us that are remnants of our past and parts of us that are downright ornery and mean. By naming these various parts of ourselves – parts I call Innerlings – we get the distance needed to be able to put the aces in their places. That is, we are better equipped to let our wisdom make our decisions and deemphasize the parts of ourselves that tell us we’re frauds or unlovable or destined to fail. In this intensive, we lay all the groundwork for working with – not against – your Innerlings.
Your 60 Minutes Interview
A week or so later, we’ll get back together to lay the groundwork of our collaboration by exploring a variety of topics that will give me a head-start in understanding how to shape my coaching to meet your unique needs, approach, and personality, and will create clarity around your goals for our collaboration.
30-Minute Laser Coaching Session
During the same meeting and after we lay that foundation, we’re going to jump up and down on it a little bit, coaching style –like you might walk out onto a freshly laid deck to feel just how strong and stable it is. In the 30 minutes following our initial consultation, we’ll start exploring the challenges and opportunities of your progress and get into some action because without action, coaching is just philosophy and while philosophy makes for great conversation, it doesn’t often make for meaningful life change.
11 60-Minute Coaching Sessions
These collaborative conversations – 45-60 minutes at a go – will be spaced out over the next six months. In the journey of your life and growth, our sessions are the time to plot the course, double (and triple) check the map, and fill up on gas and snacks. Which is to say, I can’t change your life – only you can do that – but I can and I will show you the broader picture and the hidden opportunities; I will join you in brainstorming the way around obstacles; and I’m awesome at showing you yourself – your wisdom, your insights, your patterns, and your potential – in the crispest, most inviting reflection you’ve ever seen.
Access to my Whole Toolbox
I’ve been collecting tools for some time now – tools that are integral to personal development, tools that are key to starting and building businesses, tools that can shape our lives like a rasp refining a slightly oversized door. Many of those tools will be working away in the background of our collaboration, shaping the way I coach you. Others are available as moments of education, things that are more meaningful when taught directly and with clarity so that you can use them ongoingly, like teaching someone how to use a saw that they can then apply however is most meaningful in the moment; the same saw can, after all, aid in the creation of picture frames, side tables, or even whole homes.
The 3-Month Pause
During our sixth session, we’ll pause for review. What do your initial goals look like from this perspective? Is our collaboration serving you as fully as we could? What could we shift, strengthen, or implement as we step into this next three months of collaboration?
The Senior Portrait Treatment
When it’s time to march across our imaginary graduation stage and move that tassel across your mortarboard, we’ll go through a process of reviewing your progress, turning those accomplishments that you zoomed past into the kind of self-acknowledgment that will boost your future efforts and transformations. We’ll even co-create a resource for you to turn back to on those days when your wisdom feels faint and your gremlins are loud. We’ll create a sort of yearbook of our collaboration, something to take with you as you continue your journey toward your biggest self and baddest life.
Two 45-Minute Check-In Sessions
As a gift to you for making a six-month commitment to your biggest, baddest life, I have for you two 45-minute check-in sessions, to be used within six months of the last coaching session of this series. Hit a snag? Ready to refine your focus or strategy? Having a hard time seeing your victories? Those are all great times to use one of these gift sessions.
Let me tell you, each one of these steps can feel like strapping on a jet pack. Put them all together and you’ll uncover a supercharged you.
What to expect!
Maybe you've never experienced a coaching collaboration before, maybe you're just curious about how I welcome folks into my coaching practice - either way, I made a wee brief video that walks you from first hello all the way into the mechanics of a coaching collaboration!
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Known equally for her laughter and her cogent questions, SB is the business coach who takes a holistic view and the empowerment coach who brings the work down to earth. While her psychology degree from UNC-Greensboro and coach training from the Coach Training Alliance shaped her understanding of human behavior, her innate abilities to create cohesive pictures out of seemingly disparate parts and see people from the intersection of what is and what could be are what makes coaching with SB a particularly unique experience. From the brick ranch on a creek in Southwest Virginia that she shares with her wife, Theresa, and their pit bull pup, SB collaborates with those seeking their bigger selves and badder lives across the country and around the world.
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