Life & Leadership coaching:
Clients mainly come to me from two areas of life. Some are professionals who wonder what is next. They wonder what will add more meaning to their lives. In many cases, they have put a great deal into getting what they want professionally, and now they want more richness in other areas of their lives.
My other clients are caregivers, particularly mothers, who want to know what success can be for them even though they don't fit the conventional model.
My clients have important things in common: They want be better leaders in their own lives. And they want to redefine success on their own terms -- with originality, warmth and integrity.
My life's work is to support clients in that journey. My path to life and leadership coaching began the day I realized I wanted to be a mother. Yes, I realize that sounds paradoxical. What does having a baby have to do with leadership? Everything. It changed my ideas about “success.”
Until I added the role of caregiver to my life, success was a very narrow thing for me. It looked something like this: Work hard, be at work’s beckon call, climb, climb, climb. Don’t worry about the hours and ignore my own health. Work was everything.
Then a child entered my life: I not only couldn’t work all the time. I didn’t want to. It was mind-bending.
Additional questions began to come up: What is success now? If I am not climbing, how am I growing? Am I still successful? How will I feel about myself if I settle into just staying in the middle/bottom of the pack for the next 20 years? Would I be OK with that? Or, heaven forbid, would I be OK with stepping down into a less stressful role?
Well, I wasn’t OK with that. But I also I knew I couldn’t give what it took to climb. I was in a conundrum where my ambition and my idea of success were in conflict with my connection to something bigger. My brain said, “Work.” My heart said, “Not so fast.”
Most troubling for me was that there weren’t supports in my industry to explore any alternative views of success. I wondered how I could support myself in exploring a broader perspective of success that wasn’t shared by my bosses or coworkers. I needed support outside of my work to resolve those questions. I needed a leadership coach.
That experience is the origin of my life and leadership coaching. In my coaching practice, I create a safe, trusting space for the client to set fears and worries aside and invest some time in looking at what they really think, what they really value, and what they really want to do. Then we make plans. I hold clients accountable for the actions, but it is much lighter than the old carrot-and-stick routine. We set realistic goals, take reasonable steps, and celebrate progress large and small.
In the end, clients feel lighter and life has much less struggle because values, priorities and actions are aligned.
I hold a broad definition of leaders. I do not necessarily mean people who lead organizations, although they are definitely a part of it. My practice supports leaders of all types, everything from independent contractors to homemakers. I consider them all to be leaders, and I support them in being the best possible leaders of their lives.
Coaching involves 45-60 minutes working together phone by in a process that is all yours. YOU set the agenda. YOU decide what to work on. And if you say you SHOULD work on something because SOMEBODY ELSE thinks it’s a good idea, I will gently point that out to you. I provide the tools and structure to get through your questions and concerns. I provide the safe space to do it. I provide the listening ear and the questions to help you get to the bottom of your questions. I don’t give advice. I support you in finding your own best advice and your own wisdom.
EXAMPLES OF EXPLORATIONS
Is it worth taking the necessary steps to “succeed”?
How can I advance my career without taking a major toll on my health and my relationships? How can I be satisfied with work and be a great parent?
Can I be OK with a different vision of success than the one I used to have?
Is mid-level or part-time work OK if it means I have time to be my daughter’s softball coach?
How can I avoid feeling stuck?
How can I see more purpose in my work? Is my work really making a difference?