I recently sent an email to a fairly well known life coach/author.
I wanted to ask a few questions about how their coaching program might help me. I’d been feeling a little off, small and scattered…living out of a suitcase can have that effect, I suppose.
I’m thirty-nine years old; aren’t I supposed to have my shit together by now?
The life I’m living is sort of like traveling with a circus. Each seven to fourteen days, I wake up in a new city, which more often than not is tremendously cool. I’m traveling with my partner who is in a touring production of a popular musical. (I teach yoga and write while he performs. Then we meet up, hit hipster coffee joints and record stores together. Life is good.)
Anyhow, I feel like we all have moments where we feel as though we could use a little tune-up. I was having one of those moments on our tour’s most recent stop: Baltimore. Maybe it was the intensity and tense energy of the city itself, my exhaustion from traveling non-stop for the past ten months and being my own assistant/agent/pr rep.
A life coaching program sounded like it could have potentially come in handy.
So, I sent out this heartfelt email, telling the coach a bit about myself, my goals and my general stuck-ness. It was a bit like a confession, and I offered up some personal details about how I was feeling, asked some questions about how the program might benefit my specific needs.
I got an email back from someone who identified themselves as the life coach’s assistant. It started off by thanking me for my inquiry, then turned into a form letter that sounded like something that would go to fans, not potential clients. There were details about the payment plan, a bunch of stuff about how busy the life coach was and how they loved hearing from admirers of their work.
And then it happened, I had an epiphany! I didn’t need to spend two installments of $485 to get some direction, orient myself back onto a steady course.
What I needed was to get off my ass, put it on a yoga mat, step up my meditation practice, and to try to get more restful sleep every night.
I realized that I’d been feeling rundown, had not been sleeping solid through the night, and was still fragile from the recent death of a family member.
When I sat with my feelings, I realized that I have a life coach inside of me…and I am aware that this may sound cheesy. But I will unapologetically say to you that when I stopped and scanned myself, I realized that everything I need is already here. I’m not broken.
I’m not damaged, and I am not a victim.
Here are some pointers for when you might be feeling a little stuck yourself:
1. Step up your yoga practice. Physical and spiritual. You don’t have to go to a studio or spend a dime! There are literally hundreds of great classes and meditation recordings available for free on YouTube right now. Don’t have a yoga practice yet? There’s no time like now to start.
2. Check out Pema Chodron. I cannot stress enough how tremendously helpful her teachings have been, and she continues to release great books and recordings. Get them gratis at your local library or find them online.
3. Sit with what is. Whatever you’re feeling right now, honor yourself and sit with whatever is there. Journal on what you observe, but don’t judge anything as good or bad. You might be surprised by what you come up with.
4. Write out a list of goals. Get out a real pen and some paper. Write down one big goal/dream and a few small ones. Perhaps you haven’t had the courage to think about this stuff, let alone share with anyone else. Seeing this all on paper is shockingly liberating.
5. Just get off your ass. Literally go out for a walk, a run, and then come home and start your plan of attack. The minute you stop your habitual pattern of self denigration and start to really do something, however small, you set in motion positive change. Move the energy if you’re feeling stagnant.
These five suggestions cost nothing.
If you feel like you need a life coach, try being your own, and see how it goes. If nothing else, you’ll be more organized, should you choose to work with a professional on attaining your goals. But in the meantime, if you need rent, grocery money and paying a coach isn’t an option, try my suggestions.
I wish you all of the best on your path, and thank you for reading my work. Feel free to share your suggestions for self life coaching in the comments below.
Author: Anna Maria Giambanco
Editor: Renée Picard
Photo: Wikimedia Commons