I carried the business card around with me for at least 9 months before I dared to pick up the phone. The card said ‘Life Coach’ and had flowers on it. Very different to the business cards I usually received. I’d been handed the card by the said life coaches’ husband who I had shared great conversation with on a long train journey; when he got off the train he said if I ever needed support his wife was a life coach. Clever marketing I thought but was also a bit taken aback thinking ‘What a cheek, as if I need a life coach. Puh. I’m very capable thank you very much, successful career, maybe a little busy and overwhelmed by life, but hey, I’m ok and feeling a little anxious and tired is normal. That’s life, right?’ I didn’t want to be rude so took the card and popped it in my diary that I always had on me as it had all my meetings, social activities and busyness documented, my only reference to what’s up next, so as not to miss a beat.
My monkey mind said ‘Throw it away, this is ridiculous, I don’t need help, I’ll look like a failure, I’ll feel weak, and anyway, I don’t have the time right now’; A different voice, my intuition, said ‘There’s no harm in keeping it, it’s not as if its taking up much space and it may be useful someday’. I looked at the business card regularly, then tucked it away safely again. In time starting using it as a book mark, slowly becoming acquainted with the idea. I checked the website a million times, reading testimonials, checking again and again what kind of people go to see a life coach, what is offered, what kind of problems people have, trying to look for reasons not to need to call. Looking back, I believe I was looking for a reason, permission in some form to call and ask for support.
I’ll never forget that moment I actually dared to dial the number without hanging up. Because, what was I supposed to say? Hello, I need help, I’m exhausted, can’t think straight, things can’t carry on this way? That felt embarrassing. So here’s sort of how it went: “Hello, uh, my name is Nicola Moss and I, I, I, I’m not really sure what to say or how this works. I’m successfully climbing the career ladder, all is well really. I’m a little tired. Maybe it’s nothing. I don’t know what to tell you. I feel silly for calling now…I’m just fed up with waiting for things to change …” The answer on the other end was simply “Hmmm, I understand. I’m happy you called. Let’s schedule a session and see where it takes us”.
It was one of the most difficult phone calls I had ever made and it’s one that I will never regret and am most proud of myself for taking that step to reach out. The time had come, I was ready. It was the beginning of a journey that I didn’t know was possible. The first of many sessions was scheduled, I had never experienced a place or a person I could talk to who was completely unrelated to my life, no judgement, no pressure. I felt so liberated to be able to share and explore what was really going on. What a blessing it was to meet that gentleman on the train who saw the lost me before I was even aware of it.
My life is not even in the slightest recognisable to back then — and that’s a very good thing! In the meantime I’ve learned to recognise my behavioural patterns, the stories I tell myself, what’s I had chosen to ignore, faced my fears and anxiety, worked through the pain and sadness, learned to accept the whole of me, opened my eyes to recognise what’s really truly important to me, and let go of a hell of a lot that wasn’t serving me in any way at all.
…when I lose weight
…when I find my soulmate
…when I have enough money
…when I have the time
…when everything around me slows down again, it’s just a phase
…when I dare to share my dreams with my family/friends/partner
…when they see how much I’ve contributed
…when my life is sorted (whatever that means)
…when I can stop defending myself and others see the real me
…when the business plan in perfect
…when I get that job or that pay rise
…when I am told what to do
…when I find the easy way to sort myself out (spoiler alert: quick fix does not exist!)
…when, when, when…
We wait for perfection, permission, recognition, to be rescued! We wait for the fool-proof plan that won’t let us fail, look lost or stupid, and that gives us the certainty that we’ve made the ‘right choice’ and all will be fine.
The truth is, we can never be certain of the outcome, we cannot foresee the future. What we can do is stop waiting for external circumstances to change, take action, look within and start the journey towards better! Step by step peeling back the layers of conditioning, looking deep within, reconnecting with your true authentic self. And who knows, your path may lead you places you never could have imagined possible, while you were waiting.
Perhaps you’re considering hiring a coach, or not. Perhaps you are unsure if anyone can help you with your unique situation or who to turn to. If so, you now have my card — keep it as long as you need.