The most powerful ally I’ve ever had is a man who doesn’t believe half of what I say.
He’s not a friend. He’s not family.
He’s a guy I pay to help me get real with myself.
What makes him such a great ally is that even when I think all the odds are against me, he truly believes that the only things in my way are my BS limiting beliefs, and my fear of failure. All of my excuses and sob stories are received with a knowing smile and an invitation to see my challenges from another perspective.
Most people misunderstand life coaches. There are probably a few different reasons for this. The first likely being that when we think of the word “coach”, we think of the guy in the locker room giving motivational speeches before a big game.
The second reason we misunderstand them is that there are plenty of people calling themselves life coaches who aren’t actually coaches. These people have answers for our problems. They’re experts and they can be very helpful in the areas of business strategy, weight loss, or dating, but they’re not coaches. They’re consultants.
Life coaching is about identifying how we want to change our lives (or change the world) and then moving all the fear and limiting beliefs that block us from letting out our brilliance.
In life, there really are no formulas for how to be our most potentiated and fully realized selves. In fact, anyone who says they’re going to give us those kinds of answers is a good salesperson at best.
And let’s be grateful for that.
The last thing any of us needs is someone who promises to provide us with all the answers. Do we really want to miss out on developing our own intuition and exercising our own courage? I personally think that would be downright disempowering!
But what is truly empowering is having someone with a highly calibrated BS detector who will tell me when they don’t believe the stories I tell myself.
There is nothing more helpful than someone who knows without a doubt what could be possible for me if I’d just get out of my own way, someone with a perspective much larger than my own who, after a one-hour conversation, leaves me wondering how I could have possibly been thinking so small and expecting so little of my life.
Have you ever had the experience of being on a vacation and feeling that deep-down hunger for something more begin to stir and come to the surface for the first time in a long time? It’s that moment when you realize what’s really important in life and wonder how you could have ever been so caught up in all the trivialities of your day-to-day grind.
Your perspective shifts. Suddenly the impossible seems possible. You realize you could do things so much differently and the only thing really stopping you…is you.
That’s what it feels like when my coach blows open my perspective. Except I get to experience it every week and strategize how to make it my reality as I build my life based on my dreams.
Sadly, most people only get to experience it once a year when they take their two-week vacation, and then it’s back to “real life,” where dreams go to die.
In case my message isn’t clear yet, consistent outside perspective from a life coach isn’t just a ‘nice to have’. For me, and for just about every highly successful person I know, it’s an essential. It keeps us thinking big and moving that vision forward. Even for those who are already big thinkers, I guarantee you, every perspective has it’s own limits.
The first time I paid money for personal growth, the price tag was 5-digits and the commitment was ten months. After signing up, I remember silently panicking wondering whether I’d just made a huge mistake.
“Couldn’t I just do this on my own? Could this possibly be worth the money?” I asked myself over and over again.
What I know now is that the price tag is actually one of the main reasons I got so much out of that experience. The price seemed out of my range and that was a good thing because it was the perfect first step in starting a new life where everything I did required me to expand my range, where every commitment I made was outside of my comfort zone.
After all, don’t they say the magic happens outside of our comfort zone?
I transformed every aspect of my life in those ten months and set out on a path that would bring me much abundance, joy, and fulfilment. I believe I was able to finally make all those changes primarily because of the size of the investment I made.
That investment set the tone for how much time and energy I invested in the journey. It demanded my utter devotion to the process.
Sometimes I wonder, had I not made a significant financial investment, if maybe I’d have been less committed when things got difficult in my personal growth journey.
I think the answer is probably yes.
I consider myself very lucky that I took the risk and threw down the cash before I knew if life coaching would even get me anywhere. And I’m especially lucky that my coach today never lets me use the fact that I pay him a lot of money as an excuse to rely on him to solve my life for me.
I was trained early on to understand that the purpose of a large investment is never to buy a coach’s investment in me (that’s already a given). It is to get me deeply, truly invested in myself.
Author: Summer Engman
Editor: Sarah Kolkka