What is it Really Like to be Coached? - Elisabeth Klein

I have had the privilege to work with over 70 women one-on-one over the past year alone.  And I thought it would be helpful to give you a glimpse behind-the-scenes of what the coaching process looks and feels like, from the perspective of one of my clients.

It starts with a sweet woman filling out a coaching questionnaire, then I follow up with her by providing a custom coaching package proposal. If she says let’s do this, we get started usually within a few days or a week, depending on her schedule. Most packages include coaching calls and I asked one of my sweet clients to share her experience with you.

Elisabeth: Nicole, you and I have been working together for about four months now. What was going on in your life when you first reached out to me?

Nicole:  Ohhh, I felt like I was falling apart and like I was a failure as a mom, wife, Christian, human being.  I was newly separated from my ex, just moved to a new city/state to be closer to family with my toddler son, and I had quit my full-time job to work part time remotely so I could do what I needed to do with this new life.  I was functioning but EVERYTHING was hard, and I clung to God as He started to show me some reasons as to how I ended up where I was.  I was literally being broken apart to be put back together.  I know now when people say that divorce is awful – it is.

Elisabeth: What nudged you to connect with me to start coaching?

Nicole:  I knew I needed more help.  I had problems in the past with isolating myself when things got hard, which led to some of my poor decision-making in the past.  I knew I needed to connect with people who knew God, who prioritized Him, and who could relate to some of what I was going through.  I had no close friends who could relate.  I was seeing a counselor, attending Divorce Care, and trying to stay connected to people.  But I felt like I needed more, and I’m glad I didn’t ignore that feeling.  I basically Googled “divorce Christian woman”, or something like that, and found you.  I read some of your work and realized that you have a heart for hurting women, and you have experienced a lot in terms of hard marriages, and that you prioritize God in a real way.

Elisabeth: We’ve had several coaching calls. Can you explain what those are like from your perspective as a client?

Nicole:  I feel like I am talking with a coach.  It’s different than talking with my counselor because she is a mental health professional, so she has to maintain a good amount of personal distance from me while she is counseling me (which is understandable, and she is a Christian, so she is genuinely caring).  But talking with you I feel like I am being supported, not judged, and I feel like I am talking with someone who has this incredible skill to get to the heart of a matter in a very short amount of time.  I used to kind of scoff at people who talked about their “life coaches”, but now I get it.  During these coaching calls I feel like someone is in my corner and cares about my success, who sees my areas of strength and acknowledges them, but who is honest about areas I could/should focus on.  I feel better after talking with you, and I always walk away with at least a couple of truths that I can work on and give me a goal.

Elisabeth: On our last call, you said to me, “I see you’re not taking any new clients…does that mean I’m off your list?” I said absolutely not! But tell me why these calls and this relationship has been important to you?

Nicole:  Ha!  I hate to assume things, because that has gotten me into trouble.  This is important to me because I am seeing real results.  I need support, I simply cannot do life alone, and I’m going through

some stuff that is just beyond me.  I mean, that is all of life, but right now I have several challenges to face that I have never faced before and I need someone to help me.  I trust your opinion, your value system, your honesty, and I know that you care about my well being and the well being of those I’m connected to.  I don’t feel like an alien when I talk to you, and frankly being a separated/soon to be divorced Christian woman with a toddler makes me feel like a complete alien from time to time (like I said, right now I don’t have any close friends who have similar life stories).  God is teaching me that really bad things happen when I isolate myself and I just cannot risk that, especially since my son is depending on me.  I’m grateful for these calls, they really do help.

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