Would you like to have more joy in your life?
Attract more abundance, love, success?
Try this exercise. From a one to a 10, how would you rate these eight areas of your life?
- Fun and recreation
- Significant other/romance
- Physical environment
Any areas need improvement? Yes? Guess what? You could use a life coach.
How does a life coach help?
Life coaches “aren’t there to tell you what to do,” Venetia Nielsen, life coach and founder of Women Empowered says. That’s the hard part. Take on a life coach and you will have to do some work to discover what you really want.
Don't know what will make you happy? Venetia says that “coaches are a great way to figure it out.”
Unlike therapists, life coaches help you:
- take stock of where you are at in life
- identify areas that need improvement with tools such as the Wheel of Life
- define goals and create a path to success
Think you could use some help? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Venetia says that a lot of people “are not fully enjoying their lives.” To do so requires change.
Take personal responsibility for life to create a more joyful existence
There are many reasons that people plod through life says Venetia. They may be:
- in the wrong job
- unaware of what they want
- stuck in a reactionary state versus a proactive mind-frame
Playing the blame game, which means holding other people and circumstances responsible for your situation in life, keeps you stuck, Venetia says.
So how do you turn things around?
Venetia challenges her clients by asking: “When you look at where you are in life, ask yourself, what was my part in that?”
These kinds of questions can be very uncomfortable. Venetia knows. Once, she went to a life coach herself; Jean-Pierre LeBlanc, who is also the co-founder and CEO of The Alchemy Network and Saje Natural Wellness.
From coaching client to life coach professional: a journey to joy
In her early twenties, Venetia landed a dream job. She was a Promotions Writer/Producer at British Columbia Television (which is now Global TV). However, layoffs and high stress took a toll of her health and she burned out.
When the management brought in a top Vancouver psychologist, Venetia went to see him. She found his assessment to be shocking.
“I expected him to say, ‘Suck it up princess,’” she says. Instead, he compared her life and health to a bank account:
- She was born whole and healthy.
- Life is like a series of transactions at a bank. You either deposit or withdraw.
- Venetia has taken so much out of her account that she was “almost bankrupt,” she says. Carrying on at work was not an option.
This exchange awakened Venetia and set her on a new path. She took time off, recovered her health, and went on to open a Saje Natural Wellness store in Kitsilano. There, she enjoyed helping people solve their wellness issues.
Although she didn’t realize it at the time, she was heading towards a career as a life coach. Her own coach Jean-Pierre knew it. “He told people I was a life coach in training,” she says.
When Venetia decided to become a life coach, she took her training and then went to work as Jean-Pierre's business partner.
Tips to help you lead a more joyful life right now (tips, not advice)
While Venetia doesn’t give advice, she does offer tips that can help you achieve more joy immediately.
- Be grateful for what you do have. "I practice gratitude for what I have every day,” Venetia says. Try it. This activity changes how a person sees their lives and shows them what's going great.
- Take 10 minutes to do something for yourself daily. Venetia says this can be meditation, a walk, a bath or reading. It just needs to make you feel good.
- Learn an important word “that starts with n and ends with o,” Venetia says. Saying no to people and situations that just don’t work for you means saying yes to people and situations that do.
Looking for a life coach?
Like anything else, it pays to do your homework. Here’s how to find the best coach for you.
- Word of mouth. At the end of our interview when I handed over my card, Venetia expressed that she doesn’t really promote her business. Her clients come through referrals who are drawn to her warm and friendly personality. “Ask around,” she says.
- Certification. It used to be that anyone could hang a shingle outside of their door. Things have changed. There are now educational avenues and training for life coaches, such as the Coaches Training Institute, which has trained more than 35,000 coaches, consultants and managers. Venetia trained extensively at this school. Find someone who is genuine and has invested in themselves.
- Fit. Venetia offers a complimentary 45 minute discovery session to determine if she and a client make a good match. It’s a personality thing. Find someone that you love to work with.
I’m trying out the ten minute a day thing myself. It’s reasonable. I’ve also added in some dates with my husband to nudge my Significant other/romance score a little closer to 10.
What about you? What area of your life needs improvement?