Jess texted me on a Saturday that his girlfriend was in need of a life coach. “Great! Have her give me a call” I texted back.
I like to chat with people on the phone before we meet, I like to get a feel for that person and hear about their agenda. Camille called me the following Monday at my office we had a nice talk about how her passivity was preventing her from doing the things she wanted to do in life and how it was starting to have a negative impact on her new relationship. We set up a coaching date for the coming Saturday then we went through the rest of the steps that get the coaching process started.
I am always excited to meet new people and help them strengthen their foundation.
This beautiful girl named Camille finds her way into my Beverly Hills office. Camille is a writer in her 20′s I had no expectations of her and it was only a short while for me to know that she was ready for change. I can tell that she standing directly on the edge of transformation, I think to myself, this is going to be a fun client to coach. She starts telling me about her dramatic personal and family experiences over the past twelve months and how she is at the end of her rope. I don’t blame her, she has been through a lot, Camille is BURNT OUT.
I do realize that most of the time I am meeting people I am their first experience with a life coach, I always want that experience to be pain free and five star. The first time I made a cold call to a life coach I had butterfly’s in my stomach. I don’t know why, I think I was in fear of her expectations of me, how would I measure up?
I know that it’s nerve wracking to do something you are afraid will stretch you out of your comfort zone. I am always trying to think of creative ways to tell people what coaching is about I want to help them understand the how and why coaching works. Since Camille is a young writer, a coaching client and on a huge personal growth curve I thought it would be really cool if she would be willing to share her story with us. My hope is that hearing her story will demystify the coaching process for you the reader. Your experiences and challenges are probably not the same as Camille’s… Or maybe they are? I hope this series will provide the support you need to reach out for coaching if you are doubting or having some fear around asking for help.
Please allow me to introduce to you a new segment on my blog called Camille’s Coaching Crusades this is a true story written by my client Camille Pandian about her experience of coaching with me from the beginning.
Introducing Camille’s Coaching Crusades
My Intro to TC…
I didn’t really think I had anything I needed to improve about myself until my boyfriend of one month told me that I was passive and a pushover. Take into account this is one month into our brand new relationship and I was head over heels in love with him. We were also on our first vacation together in New Orleans. He’d been grumpy with me all day, and finally sat me down and told me this news.
I was shocked. I considered myself a very strong person. I reacted extremely defensively. I told him he obviously didn’t really know me, or anything I’d been through. I cried. I pouted. He eventually calmed me down and we sat in a park after dark and talked for hours. It ended with me promising to try to be louder and bolder, and him promising to be patient.
We went another month before things blew up again, this time though, I could see the pattern with my own eyes. I brought a girlfriend to my boyfriend’s DJ night. In all the time I’ve known her she could never hold her alcohol. She would be plastered after only a couple drinks. Well, that night she drank a lot before she even got to the club-night. I didn’t realize how bad it was until I went outside at the end of the night and saw her clinging to the wall and, giving her number out to random strange guys on the sidewalk. She was the joke of the bar, and as she was there as my friend, it was pretty embarrassing, to say the least. After seeing that she got home safely I went home and really thought hard about the friend’s I’d made in Portland in the last few months. How many of them were real friends? How many did I really respect? With horror, it began to dawn on me how few friends I had that I could say I truly respected. What good was a friendship if you didn’t respect the other person? I decided I no longer wanted to continue any “friendships” or relationships where I didn’t respect the other person.
Rather cut up by this revelation, I brooded about the next day, and finally met my boyfriend, Jess, for a movie and chat. It still took him some prompting to get me to open up, but once I did I poured my heart out to him about my dissolved friendships as well as the trouble I was having with my mom. The first thing he said was that I was in danger of letting passivity over run my life. Wait. What?? Here I was having a hard day and looking for some sympathy! But he went on. “Just listen to yourself! You’re apologizing for complaining to me about your bad day!” It’s true, I had been. “Why are you apologizing? Who in your life told you that it wasn’t okay to vent about a bad day?”
I froze. No one had ever pointed that out to me before. Moreover, it had always been normal to apologize for anything to me. I had lived in Britain for a long time and the Brits apologize for everything. But it’s true, who said complaining was bad? Maybe he had a point. And what was I doing making friends with just anyone who stumbled into my life, regardless of values or standards? Wasn’t that, after all, being passive?
However, I was still in a huff. I couldn’t believe not only was he calling me passive, but I was getting no sympathy after pouring out my heart about my bad day. I angrily told him as much in the car. “I’m not attacking you,” he kept saying. “Stop being so defensive. You have to recognize that the passivity is a part of you. The choices you made that led to the consequences of last night were passive ones. I mean, how do you choose your friends? Or do you choose them?” He parked on the side of a street and again we talked for hours in the dark car. This was when I first heard TC’s name. “I know someone who could help you with this,” he said as he parked. “I used to see this life coach in LA. Her name was TC Conroy. She told me so many things I didn’t want to hear about myself, and it was so hard to sit there and listen. But I made myself listen. I would force myself to sit there and take notes. She completely turned my life around.”
Right away I was determined to see her. I knew he was right. I was terrified of being passive, like my mother, but it was undoubtedly controlling a big part of my life. I was willing to do whatever it took to improve my life. A highly-rated life coach in LA sounded like a good start. We were planning on going to LA for the weekend anyway the 1st of October, which was in two weeks. I hounded him to contact her and see if she could squeeze me in.
Sure enough, not only could she squeeze me in, she wanted to chat with me on the phone as soon as I had a spare moment. I was thrilled with my proactivity. I may be passive, but I am never lazy. I had a good impression of TC from the moment I said hello to her on the phone. I was a little worried someone with so much publicity might be hard and overbearing, especially after what Jess had said. But the voice from the other end of the phone was warm and friendly and immediately put me at ease. I actually despise the phone. I hate not being able to see the other person I’m talking to. I have been told by employers I have fantastic phone manners, but I personally feel awkward on them. However, awkwardness was nonexistent with TC. In our first ten minute conversation, she guided the conversation effortlessly. I felt thoroughly listened to but she never let me get distracted. I got across the main points I wanted to work on, as well as some of my background, and I got a feeling of her just over the phone. I thought we were going to make an excellent team.
Over the next two weeks I filled out the forms she had emailed to me, tried to be more aware of when I was being passive and what I might be able to do about it, and eagerly looked forward to our face-to-face meeting in LA.
Tune in next week for Camille’s re-cap of our first coaching session.