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why coach?

I didn’t choose the coach life, the coach life chose me.

It took me a long time, 2 years really, to feel comfortable talking about what I do and what I want to do. I wanted to be taken seriously and in the coaching world, it's so hard to know who is legit and who is selling you something.

I have spent my entire life trying to figure out what my calling was. I just didn’t see or accept that what lights me up and inspires me most was what I have been doing all along “for fun” or “for now” or “on the side.”

In high school, I started pole vaulting the year after girls were allowed to compete in the event. There was a scarcity of coaches and knowledge, but I loved it and was inspired to learn all I could. I went to camps, traveled to practice with other teams, networked in the pole vault world, and coached my squad. The summer after my junior and senior year, I coached camps for other teams when I could.

At eighteen, I started coaching gymnastics and continued with that through all of my college years. It was an easy transition from being an athlete in the sport for over ten years, and I enjoyed working with kids and showing them their bodies could actually do things their minds thought they could not. To me, it was enjoyable, I had friends I worked with, an amazing boss who grew her employees, and the schedule was flexible to work with my overload of college courses.

At the end of my college career, I was invited to be an assistant coach for the local high school track team and I jumped at the chance. Literally. I was in charge of jumps and pole vault, and was the girls’ team chaperone. I had several athletes who inspired me to learn more and reach back to those days from my high school career that I scraped and climbed and sought anything I could to get to the next level. Those athletes went much further than I ever did and it brings a smile to my face every time I think about them.

After college, I started my career in a customer service and sales-based company that was very competitive. I found myself wanting to focus on my employees and customers and helping them through life and career struggles, but we were so busy and had little time for such things. I realized I needed to do some soul searching and find something that didn’t drain me, and that I was actually helping someone. At that point I was grinding hard for someone else’s inflated paycheck and it wasn’t worth it to me anymore.

So I went back to school and a year later earned my Multiple Subject Teaching Credential. I was finally doing something I loved and I was helping people! I was affecting lives positively and I was learning constantly. The only problem is that I started having babies at that time in my life, and I wanted to stay home with them. My career was put on hold on and off between teaching assignments, and I started to become disenchanted with how trapped I felt with all of the other aspects required of teachers (read: paperwork, meetings, iep meetings, grading, conferences, etc.). I felt like the majority of my time was spent on everything but teaching, and I had little face to face time with my students in that format.

I left my teaching career and promised to take with me all that I had learned, but swore I would focus on what really lit me up and made me feel alive. We are best when we feel that way. Somewhere along the way, I was convinced by others that it was selfish and frivolous of me to do what I was passionate and actually good at.

In 2017, my marriage ended and I took a year off of work. I did some part time things here and there, like working at a winery— pouring wine and making connections, but nothing serious. I needed to figure out what to do, learn about boundaries, and eventually accept that what I am good at and what I feel like I could do for a million years— coach.

I’m a helper. I’m a strategist. I care about people. So, I enrolled in the Martha Beck Wayfinder Life Coach School and threw myself into the craft. I started talking with more people, practicing coaching, and learning the tools. I started reading all.the.books and releasing myself of all of the false beliefs that were holding me back. I went to therapy, received lots of coaching myself, and made new friends and picked up new hobbies. I found my way.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m still working on myself and navigating a new path. I’m still learning how to cast off the chains that still work their way back onto me when I dip in vigilance. But I do know I’m on the right path, and I know the tools I have learned to use and teach others to use will reveal the answers we seek. I know that it’s all right there inside of us, where it has always been. We were just living for someone else, trying to please someone else, just doing what we thought we should do. Getting to a more calm, honest, and fulfilled version of yourself is a journey that is attainable and the path there is all about learning.

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