This summer, as one does, I caught up with a lot of people I had not seen in many many years, 12 to be exact, and a common question has been: “But why coaching?”
People knew me as a career driven person who seemingly juggled everything from being a senior executive, a mother to 3 very young children, a housewife hosting “grand” dinner parties and jet setting around the country to attend functions with her husband.
I was even told this summer that it was intimidating because I did everything effortlessly AND I even went to the gym… I guess, the underlying message was I was annoying. 🙂
So when I came back 12 years on and I was not at the top of the career ladder and it was obvious I had not exercised in a little while and I had a “new age” career in coaching, people had to ask….
It forced me to stop and think. Why did I choose to become a coach?
The answer is simple:
I wanted to provide to others the help I wished I could find when I was in a crisis.
I make no secret of the fact that I burned out, but this group of friends is literally on the other side of the world from me and they were not necessarily aware. And truth be told, when I was at the bottom, I did not feel like keeping in touch very much.
When it came time to go back to the work force, I realised that my values had changed. I was still the same person, but what was important for me had completely changed. While before I wanted to be recognised and could only be so in a corporate setting, the rests (Family, personal life, hobby) were second to this main and only goal.
After my burnout, I wanted to be present for my kids, I wanted to become healthier and stronger, AND I wanted to share my experience with others. What I did not want was to be back in a system where I would easily go back to my old habits.
It was a total shift from my previous hierarchy of values. People kept telling me that I would go back to my old self and find the desire to re-engage in the work place and find my way. I was not so sure.
Life made it so that I had to focus on my most important value: My family for the first few years after my burnout. My strength and health slowly but surely came back, actually making me healthier and stronger than I had ever been.
But my drive to be on top of the corporate ladder did not come back. Sure, there was a certain amount of apprehension in returning into a setting that pushed me so low. But I quickly realised that actually it was not the system but my reaction to it that pushed me under and that if I wanted to go back into that world, I would be much better prepared thanks to the lessons from the burnout.
However I did not feel that pull anymore.
I realised that I needed to share my experience and help others avoid, if possible, going through what I went through.
I had to give back.
I felt that I could not just self-proclaim myself a coach. I wanted to be trained so that I would not make situation worse for the people I helped. I set off to train as a coach and as an EFT practitioner.
I went on to open my practice about 2 years ago. And I love it.
Why? There is no ladder to climb, there is no competition per say. I am faced with people’s suffering and intense story and I have to take it.
Still, I wake up with a smile on my face.
Because I give back, because I learn every day, because I help others change their life for the better. And yes, sometimes it is heavy but with the training as a coach and an EFT practitioner, you are taught to let go, to shake that intensity off. And it is not unheard off to see me walking the street at a fast pace to burn some negative energy.
These are my Whys.
Because of those, I have never looked back. I have never missed a career interrupted too quickly.
I have been asked if I would consider going back, and the truth of the matter is No!
For sure, I would be a better employee, simply because I am much more rounded nowadays than I was 10 years ago. But I would not enjoy it as much.
I don’t suggest to quit and move on to all my clients. Actually I work with them to maintain them in their path but in a way that works for them.
This is my story.