31 May 2013

A Heads Up for Up-and-Coming Coaches

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Health coach. Life coach. Creativity coach. Something-relative-to-your-own-unique-gifts coach. If you're looking to burst into the coaching scene with your fledging lil' biz, this post is for you...

First off, let's get one thing straight. As someone's who been doing this coaching thing for no more than ten months, I'm hardly an authority on this topic, but what I know to be true is this:

When you're fully immersed in something for the sheer reason that you feel compelled to be, and when this immersion calls forth a true sense of meaning, purpose and dharma, then it's highly likely you've got something valuable to say.

And besides, if you've ever coached with me, or heard me speak at a gig, you'll know that I have zero interest in being your guru, let alone a figure of authority. It will always be my intention to instead stand shoulder-to-shoulder next to you. Sisters unite.

Here's a common fear I see swirling amongst up-and-coming coaches: "I'm worried that I'll get asked a question I don't know the answer to."

I absolutely understand. This used to freak me out, too. What if I'm under qualified? What if I can't find the right words to say? What if I can't challenge my clients enough?

Here's what I believe. You will more than likely attract the exact right clients for your skill set. Plain and simple. My first influx of clients (who I still save a space for in my heart) came to me with 'stuff' I knew I could guide them through, and they challenged me just enough to ensure that I could expand and grow (rather than implode!).

As the months have passed, the 'stuff' that my clients bring to the table has evolved, as has my skill set.

The Universe seems to respond to your new found confidence by giving it something to chew on. Think of it as a coaching-massage: your clients will come to you with knots in their back, and you'll use your touch (in this case, your presence, your listening ability, empathy, optimism, strategic eye and a fresh perspective) to gently roll those knots out. The more experienced (and confident) you become, the bigger knots the Universe sends your way. They'll take a little longer to work out, but it's worth the effort.

This explains why you'll often find that many of your clients will simultaneously be experiencing similar life situations, challenges and road blocks, and why (non) coincidentally, that very same road block is one you may have overcome very recently.

Coaching changes your whole relationship to pain and suffering. Rather than mulling in pain, you'll allow yourself to feel it- you'll investigate it. I swear to you, I've been through situations that have left me sobbing for days, only to find that a few days later, FOUR of my clients were experiencing something so similar, and they were unsure of how to see the light at the end of the tunnel. You play a role in that light. Bless your pain and hardship, and know that it'll help someone you care about sooner than you think.


There are times of course when you'll feel uncomfortably challenged. In day to day life, I'm all for following the discomfort and leaning out of our comfort zones, but I'm absolutely not down with coaching feeling uncomfortable- not as the coach in the relationship anyway. As the client, discomfort is a good thing, it's growth! But as the coach? No. Coaching has to be a love-filled; laden with empathy and an open heart.

Know your limits. It's okay to say 'I don't know', and it's absolutely okay to lovingly let go of a client who you feel in your heart isn't suited to you and your line of work.

I've had to do this. It's not easy, but it's very, very essential- not only to their growth as a human being, but to your integrity as a business woman.


Most importantly...

I know it's all-too-easy to future trip over your about-to-be-born coaching biz. We worry about what we're capable of, whether we'll be appreciated, be valuable enough or praised enough. But I believe the single most important quality that makes for a powerful coach and a potent coaching session, is PRESENCE.

Quit future tripping babe, and instead, listen. Listen to your client like you've never listened before. Be there.

Coaching sessions rarely roll out as a formatted, rigid, Q&A type conversation, at least not in my experience. Yes, you'll be responding to your client, but this can happen in a very natural, organic way. Let it be easy. If you're fully preset, and energetically engaged, you'll know what to say, and when.

Let your intuition work her sweet, sweet magic. She will not fail you.

LINEAre you an up-and-coming coach or healer who's facing fears of inadequacy and under-qualification? OR, are you from a different industry all together, but still gained value from this post? I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!

Let's get the word out about intuitive, present coaching. Share this baby with your buddies!

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    • 31 May 2013

      Ahh...thank you so much Tara.

      I just shared this post with a lovely client of mine who is an upcoming coach but very worried about 'but what if I don't know what to say or have nothing to say.'

      Your timing = impeccable. As I know your coaching is too.

      • Tara
        31 May 2013

        Thank you Julie! Send her a virtual cuddle for me!


    • Amy
      31 May 2013

      Babe! This is exactly what I needed to read this morning. The demons of self doubt have been trying to invade my brain which often makes me complicate things. What a beautiful reminder, to just be me, to be present and remember to trust my intuition and that the right people will come to me if I be true to me and my skill set. Thanks once again for your wise, wise words beautiful. luv ya xx

      • Tara
        31 May 2013

        You're welcome baby.

        If you're doing work from a good, high place, you'll be supported. I believe it 100% x

    • Lindsay Loves Veggies
      31 May 2013

      Oh, Tara, you're so wonderful. :)

      I'm just about to write a coaching email, and this was such a great reminder to just throw that love and support in there 110%. Even though coaching can be challenging, it's such an incredible feeling to see and hear progress and growth in clients. It makes me feel so blessed to be in a situation to help people through their journey to better health.

      • Tara
        31 May 2013

        YOU are wonderful, Miss Lindsay.

        Throw it in there babes- love, support, all of it. It's always worth it when you can see the love you give to it reflected back at you with the smiles on their faces. Bloody priceless.

    • 31 May 2013

      Tara you beautiful soul, thank you so much for sharing this today. My practical exams start tomorrow and I've been worrying about being in a situation that I won't know what to do.

      Your words of wisdom have helped so much, arriving exactly when I needed to hear them. I especially love the 'knots' metaphor. Thank you hun xxx

      • 1 June 2013

        So glad it's helped you lovely xx

    • Clare
      31 May 2013

      Thanks for your words Tara, sometimes I have a fear of moving too quickly (even though I want to)....i feel comfortable moving slowly and building up my skill set over time, that's no problem.....but there's always this feeling that I should jump through these other hoops more quickly (maybe it comes from being an indigo child, wanting to be an instant manifestor, but i'm afraid of this aspect of me)...and when I see a chance to move quickly, that's more what scares me.....or the idea of catching a big wave straight away even when i'm not all that experienced.....when i want to move a bit more quickly than I think I'm ready for, I panic and don't let things flow and start being irrational........i have to learn the art of moving along quickly (with clients or coaching or whatever) if that's the right pace for me, and feeling comfortable with it too...catching big waves quickly if it feels right and not worry about standing up...and just trusting that I'm not going to drown in the ocean that I feel like i'm in, and that the waves will ride me back to the shore and a feeling of groundedness when i've finished riding them. thanks for your surfing imagery too in a recent video post.....I love the water, and have a couple of water signs in me here and there x

    • 31 May 2013

      As always, perfect timing! As I launch my coaching biz, I've certainly felt these fears arise the last few days. You've given me a huge reminder to be present and be love. And a whole new wave of excitement! Thank you darling x

      • Tara
        31 May 2013

        You are so welcome beautiful.

        PS: You're amazing, and you'll be FINE :) xx

    • 31 May 2013

      Yes!! I can speak for this so dearly. Truly, I had to learn how to step out of my own way, SHOW UP & tell myself it's not about me, it's about something BIGGER than me! ;)

    • 31 May 2013

      (say it in a high pitched voice) AMAZEBALLS! An so perfect for me right here right now.. Enough said. Ur a legend x

      • 1 June 2013

        AMAZE BALLS! :) xxx

    • 31 May 2013

      Tara, I remember emailing you last year and telling you about my fear of not being old enough to do this work but because I stumbled upon your website and watched one of your videos - I knew it was surely a universal sign. You gave me inspiration back then to not be afraid and just get started. Now when am on the road this post and your words have raised my pace again! It is so important to not be the guru but simple an imperfect learner! Thanks for being so authentic always! xx

      • 1 June 2013

        Oh honey, good! I'm glad this found you at the right time, again.


    • Maria
      1 June 2013

      Thank you so much for this, Tara. Your words are so soothing to some worn-out worry neurons ;) I had been doing quite a bit of future-tripping ;) But I had a lovely experience recently which was summed up by this part of your post: "This explains why you’ll often find that many of your clients will simultaneously be experiencing similar life situations, challenges and road blocks, and why (non) coincidentally, that very same road block is one you may have overcome very recently." A lovely soul I have connected with online is going through something that I was going through around a year ago. I feel honoured and overjoyed that sharing my story and the tools I used might be helping her too. In fact, I got a little teary thinking about it. I'm definitely grateful for the lessons I've learned - for myself, but even more if they can benefit another :) And reading your words, and thinking about this particular connection, suddenly the whole thing doesn't seem so scary anymore. Just a process of one sister being present for another, and saying "It's okay. I'm here. I see you and I believe in you and your dreams."

      • Maria
        1 June 2013

        Any chance this can be deleted? I feel like I shouldn't have mentioned this lovely lady and also that it sounds like I have put emphasis on me sharing my story, when actually the most important thing is being present to witness hers. I wanted to edit it but don't think that's an option ;) And what made me teary was really the idea that maybe my dream job is not so far away after all... by being present and being me, maybe I really can help people. It's a very new concept for me and I'm still wrapping my head around it!

    • 1 June 2013

      Like everyone else above, this came at the most perfect time. I'm just starting my health and wellness coaching biz and I'm so so scared I wont be able to get any clients or people will think my prices are crazy or I would really dial down my niche. I'm terrified yet I know it's exactly what I'm suppose to be doing.

      Everyday I ask the universe to guide me in the right direction and tell myself to 'let go and let God."

      Reading this really made me realize that I am aligned with my purpose and I will get clients, "if I build it they will come' so to speak :)

      Thanks Tara!

    • Steph
      1 June 2013

      Hi Tara,

      I have just completed a certificate course in counselling and am about to embark on the full degree program in September. I can't tell you how much this helped! I often have fear and doubts around my ability and future as a counsellor/coach, so much so that I almost backed out of applying for the degree! Even though I know and truly believe it's ehat I'm here for. That little negative voice telling me I won't be able for my future clients or their issues...telling me there's no way I could make this work, for me or for them...no way I could build a business or reputation...we gotta dissipate those fears and see them for what they really are! False. Evidence. Appearing. Real. I loved this post so much I shared it with my fellow students ;) Thank you for the moment of clarity, keep up the great work, love & blessings from Ireland x

    • 1 June 2013

      Gorgeous post Tara. Lovin' your website.
      Keep on shining!

    • Kimberley - Dream. Delight. Inspire.
      3 June 2013

      Have I told you recently that I love you? As soon as I read the title of this post I knew I would adore the words that accompanied it. I have been teaching singing for years now and only recently have I stopped worrying about uttering the words "I don't know". I love it when I don't know something because it leads to an awesome investigation and learning session on my part. When your clients/students challenge you, it is such an incredible learning experience!

      Love your work as always honey. xx

    • Stephanie
      4 June 2013

      Thank you, Tara! I'm studying to be a health coach at the moment, and I find that I often need a confidence boost that I can be successful in this field. Amazing timing, thank you! xxx

    • Ashlee
      4 June 2013

      Thank you Tara.These are the words I needed to hear today :)

      So much love
      Ash xx

    • Kris
      4 June 2013

      Thank you so much gorgeous!! Really love and appreciate this wonderful post! Self doubt and fear can really make it challenging to promote and back yourself, and can sometimes make you feel lonely at times too. Thankfully there are fabulous people like yourself to keep us going and keep things in perspective. Thank you for being you! Xo

    • 5 June 2013

      Perfect timing thanks lovely x

    • Heidi
      5 June 2013

      Although I'm in a totally different industry (Beauty Therapy), it really was a great reminder to rise to a higher place and remember that our gifts are here to be shared and it really is more about the client than ourselves. Trusting and valuing our talents is all we have to do.

      Thanks for the realignment *

    • 15 June 2013

      Absolutely love what you do my darling- your words are so raw, authentic, dazzling and astounding. I can feel them pulsing through my body as I type this- phew! xx

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