The Curation Of Creativity With Coach Kate Taylor

PRACTICAL MAGIC, CREATIVITY, MOVEMENT AND LEADING THE RIGHT LIFE FOR YOU

Happy Monday everyone! From my last post full of inspiring advice from some very inspirational women I turn today to another fabulous woman for my latest splash of interview motivation to lift you up this brand new week. Kate Taylor is an empowerment and creativity coach whose distinctive coaching style embraces a number of original and unique techniques designed to bring you more in touch with the life you really want to live - not to live in fear of a life that doesn't stick to all the rules. She encourages people to find out, explore and express the creative truth within them and to use that to "live well, work well and feel good." So make sure to read on and learn more about Kate, her career and her coaching work. Plus don't miss her top tips for living a well-rounded life that will simply make your week a lot brighter should you choose to embrace the brilliant advice that she has to offer.

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Hi Kate! Please could you begin by giving us a little insight into your career to date and what led you to become a coach?

My career(s) have been a many varied and splendored thing. I’ve always flirted with the creative industries; starting out as a fashion journalist in London before a move back to my hometown of the Isle of Wight, saw me having a serious amount of fun working for Bestival and starting my marketing career. After 4 years working with them, I moved back to London to forge a career in the advertising industry where I (hard) earnt my stripes for the next 10 years. It was here that I re-trained as a coach, as I saw the need to help women in the creative industries take up their rightful place; both in terms of tapping into their limitless capabilities, but helping to support their confidence to do so. 

Could you let us know a little more about the types of coaching that you practice and why you chose these particular styles? How can they help people in their working and everyday lives?

I’m a magpie when it comes to my coaching career. This is mainly due to the fact that I have dropped into my purpose, so I'm positively obsessed with the work I do. It’s my calling to help people live a creative life on their own terms, which I do so through a blended approach, something I call ‘Practical Magic’.

Essentially what this means is that I help people to drop out of their heads and into their bodies to work from a place of heart and soul, rather than being trapped in logic and living from a place of ‘shoulds’. I believe that we hold pretty much all the answers we could ever need in our bodies if we allow ourselves to tune into intuition and instinct. Practical Magic does just this; it combines creativity and empowerment coaching, neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) and a movement practice called Qoya.

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

What is it that you love most about the coaching work that you do and what motivates you on a daily basis?

Oh my goodness, I love SO much about the work that I do, but if I had to pick; it has to be watching the transformative power that occurs when people give themselves permission and trust to make a shift happen. I hold space for my clients to emerge from their chrysalis to lead a life that is wholly for them. There’s nothing better than when people realise that it’s OK to put the oxygen mask on first and that by shifting the focus they have so much more to give than they ever thought possible. Daily motivation comes from being surrounded by (and being part of) a tribe of fierce and feminine women who are all leading their own destinies, and they’re rocking it hard!

I love your belief in the power of living creatively, even in spite of the fears and uncertainties that it can bring. Could you explain a little more about what this means to you and how it plays a part in your coaching work?

To be creative doesn’t mean you must be born with a paintbrush or pencil in your hand, living a creative life is all about tuning into the creative spirit that lives within each and every one of us. It’s all about choosing a life of full technicolour high shine, rather than a grey ‘me-too’ life.

But, dancing to the beat of our own drum can come fraught with its own anxieties; we fear that people will think we’re crazy, or that if we choose to follow our dreams the life we've carefully curated will come crashing down around us. Anyone who’s read Elizabeth Gilbert’s book Big Magic will resonate when she talks about the fact that fear and creativity go hand in hand. I believe it’s all down to the idea of ‘Meraki’, which means to weave a little of your soul into everything you create. When we do this, it means the stakes are high. We can fear the risk of failure with such abject terror that it can stop us in our tracks before we even start. I work with my clients to work through their fears and to dial up their inner strength so that they can progress with confidence.

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

I'd love to know a little more about Qoya; as someone who spent much of her youth training in the arts and loving to dance, I personally really believe in the power of movement to help people unlock potential and to express themselves. However I hadn’t previously heard of Qoya - could you tell us a little more about it and why people might find it helpful?

Yes, I whole-heartedly agree with you. Qoya has changed my life. It’s allowed me to travel the longest journey of 6 inches from my head to my heart, and with it, I have been able to peel back the layers I had built up around myself to get to my true essence. I call Qoya coaching using the body. It’s based on the idea that through movement we remember that we are wise, wild and free. Through slowing down and connecting to our body’s infinite wisdom, we can live from a place of truth.

What I most love about Qoya is how we can express ourselves creatively by simply moving in the way our body wants to move, and the great thing is that there’s no way you can do it wrong - when it feels good you know you’re doing it right.

Qoya also brings women together through community. We gather in the magic of everyday rituals to embrace the power of the divine feminine. We share experiences and witness each other’s journey with zero judgement and in the safety of a sacred space, so we can accept the invitation to feel more.

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

What has working as a coach taught you about yourself? Can you let us in on some of the highlights as well as some of the challenges that it's offered along the way?

What hasn’t it taught me?! I’ve learnt everything about myself through coaching. I’ve learnt that nothing is ever wasted. I’ve also learnt that it doesn’t matter how you get to where you want to be, as long as you come on the journey with an open mind, and an open heart. I understand that by tapping into our ‘why’ and nurturing our own values system we can live from a place of truth. This means we can get so much more done than by sticking our noses over other people’s fences to see what they’re doing.

My absolute favourite thing about what I do is the fact that there are no limitations. I can be as creative with my business as I wish. This has seen me travelling the world to share my work and busting a fear of public speaking to get up on stages all over the globe. As I type this I’m on a plane to Helsinki to deliver a creativity workshop for a super-cool brand. I also get to collaborate with incredible people; including my Blush Love Retreat with work wife Gail Schock! She’s someone who, like me, always says ‘yes’ to the adventure. We launched our first Qoya, Kundalini and meditation retreat in Portugal last year, and it has been named as one of the top retreats of 2017.

Running your own heart-centred, creative business definitely comes with its own set of challenges. Leaving the corporate world was like jumping off of a cliff and praying that there was a safety net (btw there always is, you just have to remember that sometimes it can feel like you’re on a trampoline). I’ve also had to process a lot of old money stories which told me you have to work yourself to the bone in order to earn money. The truth is, that it can be easy to earn money from doing what you love. You’ve just got to be daring in trusting that it will happen.

When it comes to your career and especially to setting up your own business what’s the one piece of advice you might go back and give your younger self if you were able to do so?

Keep yourself focused on how you choose to feel when you have the career or business you desire. Really tune into how it feels in your body when you consider how you want your life to be, and how you wish to be in it. By doing this, you are not only setting a destination into the sat nav for where you are heading; you are instructing all parts of yourself – both consciously and unconsciously – to go get it!

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Finally, work wellbeing and work-life balance are important topics here on The What Now Blog so I’m intrigued to know if you have any tips for keeping balance in your life and if it’s something that you believe can be achieved?

I’m a Libran, so I totally believe in the idea of balance, however, I also recognise that the scales can tip wildly in either direction. Work-life balance is something that I am always striving for, although it’s a lot easier now that I don’t commute into London every day!

My tips for a well-rounded life are:

Stop With The Glorification Of Busy: As I say, working hard and burn-out are old stories of mine, so I have to check in with myself if I'm feeling drained. I listen to my body if it’s feeling out of whack, or I'm displaying symptoms of disease. It’s a misnomer that working longer and harder will get more done, it doesn’t. By packing so much into our lives we are making ourselves stressed-out, ill, and less effective. We all have a duty to look after ourselves, and allow other people to do the same.

Find Your Own Natural Rhythms: We are cyclical in nature; meaning that we should honour our natural patterns, rather than working in a linear way as if we’re computer-programmed. We have something called Circadian Rhythms, which are based on a 24-hour clock. Throughout 24 hours we mentally, emotionally and physically respond to elements such as light and dark in our environments. This is why you may feel more creative and alert at certain times of the day. It’s normal for us to have a slump at around 4pm, and want to run our faces into a chocolate bar!

We’re all unique of course, so understanding your own rhythms means you can work with them. Tune into when you are at your most alert, and do your thinking or creative work then. Listen to your body for when you might need to take a break – and take it. Ladies, also track your monthly cycles, as there will be natural highs and lows based on your menstrual cycle.

Improve Your Sleep Quality: Sleep is a wonder drug. Not only does your body get the rest and repair it needs, but your brain and the central nervous system get the chance to process everything we’ve fed it throughout the day through dreaming. Get a good sleep routine by trying to keep to a regular sleep pattern, not drinking caffeine past 4pm, and cutting down on booze. Also, get those devices out of the bedroom, and don’t be checking your email before you go to bed, or as soon as you wake up – it’s a recipe for stress. If you currently use your phone as an alarm clock, then simply go and buy an alarm clock – no excuses!

Get Outside Every Day: It doesn’t matter if it’s 10 minutes or an hour, but get yourself up and go outside. Wherever you are, take a walk and look up at the sky. It’s the best leveller, and can completely shift your perspective. Looking up also helps us to get into creative thinking, and giving ourselves much-needed space in each day is essential.

Move Your Body:  Dance, shake, jump around – moving your body will help you drop out of your head and into your body, and will help you to feel alive. It’s a natural stress buster, it puts a smile on your face, and it can help you find creative solutions to any problems that you may be facing.

 Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Photo Credit: Kate Taylor, Creative Living

Thank you to Kate for an insight into her work and for some serious motivation to get through this working week. You can learn more about Kate and her coaching work on her website www.katetaylor.co and I highly recommend signing up to her newsletter - it always drops into my inbox at just the right time with just the right amount of much-needed wisdom to get me through my day!

Before you head back to your desk today take a moment to connect, to move and to invigorate yourself. Don't let the working week run away with you and forget to look after yourself. Move, breathe and take a break when you need it. Look after you and the rest will take care of itself.

Louise

 


Wholeheartedly Healthy With Laura Agar Wilson

HEALTH COACH AND BLOGGER LAURA ON LOVING YOURSELF AND FINDING A REALISTIC SENSE OF BALANCE

Happy Monday everyone! This brand new week I'm bringing you a brand new interview. This time with health coach, writer and recipe developer Laura Agar Wilson who you may previously have come across on her website and blog, Wholeheartedly Healthy. Laura's personal journey to wellness is an inspiring one. As someone who has experienced a very familiar journey wrestling with dieting, weight loss and extreme exercise, Laura has come to understand what real balance means for her and helps others to achieve that same sense of wellness through the work that she now does. The great news being that it doesn't involve extreme dieting, punishing exercise routines and general levels of total stress and anxiety. Laura has learnt to love herself and wants to help others to do the same. So if you're feeling a little less than bright after a hectic weekend, then give yourself a break and read on for some top tips and inspiration.

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Hi Laura! Please could you tell me more about what you do and about your blog Wholeheartedly Healthy? 

I’m a health and wellbeing coach so I support women to make sustainable changes to their lifestyle and mindset to help them in creating a healthier and happier life. I also share articles on related topics on my blog, especially recipes and tips around self-care and self-love.

What led you to this kind of work and how did you arrive at where you are now?

I started my blog after I’d lost some weight as a way to keep me motivated to lose more and keep it off. After quite a journey I learned how damaged my relationship with food had become and decided to train as a holistic health coach to help myself and help others. It blended really well with my experience and training in complementary therapies such as CBT and NLP and the knowledge of sociology, psychology and teaching that I’d picked up when doing my MA. As my employed work contract was coming to an end and I was pregnant it made sense to take the leap and make it my full time business.

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

What is it that you love most about the work you do and what motivates you on a daily basis?

Without a doubt the women I get to work with each day. I feel very lucky to get to inspire and motivate them and remind them how awesome they are! On a more practical level, I also feel very blessed to be able to do something I love so much that is flexible around my needs as a Mum.

What are the biggest challenges that you think people face with food and their health? Can you offer any simple advice to help people make a positive change right away?

I think most people believe it’s something to do with the food they eat, which of course plays a big part, but from my perspective it’s the mindset they have connected to the food that causes more issues like self-sabotage. The best thing people can do is quit any kind of ‘diet’ (the diet mentality can be very damaging in the long term) and add more vegetables, fruit and whole grains into their diets and work on seeing things as a long-term lifestyle shift where the odd dessert is totally encouraged!

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Do you have any simple tips for people trying to maintain a healthier lifestyle but struggling to do so whilst balancing work, life and everything else in between?

Try focusing on one thing at a time instead of attempting a total life overhaul. Maybe start by batch cooking some healthy meals at the weekend so you always have a healthy dinner on hand that just needs to be heated up when you get in from work. Then it might be looking at how you can be more active. Remember that it’s being active that’s more important than working out, a lunchtime walk, for example, is a great way to increase activity.

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

How can we deal with setbacks when trying to improve our wellbeing and lifestyle?

If you can flip your mindset and see that setbacks are just part of a lifelong journey and that you haven’t ‘failed’ in any way. Often people have one small setback and that leads them to going completely off track. If they’d just accepted it as a small slip up and got back into their usual habits it would have made little difference!

What’s the one piece of advice you would go back and give your younger self when it comes to your own health and wellbeing?

Never go on a diet! Looking back I can see how yoyo dieting damaged my metabolism and relationship with food. I would have been better off teaching myself how to cook vegetable based meals from scratch and enjoying treats in moderation!

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

When it comes to looking after your own work-life balance and wellbeing how do you like to unwind after a busy day and make sure you feel refreshed and refocused for the rest of your week?

I love to play with my son after dinner and do the bath and bedtime routine. I’m currently working hard on staying off social media as much as possible on an evening as I can easily slide back into work mode that way! I like to finish the day with a guided meditation in bed, I sleep really well after them.

What does the future hold for Wholeheartedly Healthy and how can people learn more about you and the work that you do?

I’ll soon be releasing a new digital guide called the Wholehearted Self-Care Guide full of advice and tips on creating a self-care routine. My Mindset Makeover Course will be opening again in May and The Balance Club, my low-cost monthly membership programme will be opening again in April. Check out Wholeheartedly Healthy for more and sign up for my free Ultimate Self-Care Guide here: The Ultimate Self-Care Kit

 Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Photo Credit: Wholeheartedly Healthy

Thank you to Laura for sharing some much needed Monday motivation to get the new week started. Actionable points that focus on loving yourself not punishing yourself. The kind of wellness that is right up my street! Make sure to check out Laura's blog to keep up to date with her latest news and get regular self-care inspiration and ideas via Twitter and Instagram.

Thanks for reading, enjoy your week and remember not to be too hard on yourself, let the punishing and the pain go and love who you are and what you've got - give yourself a break, you deserve it!

Louise

 


The Arts Meet Meditation And Mindfulness: An Interview With Emma Mills

HOW POETRY AND THE ARTS CAN CONNECT AND CENTRE US IN THIS HECTIC WORLD

It's been a few months since the last interview here on the blog so today I'm excited to finally share a brand, shiny new one with you! An insight into the world and work of teacher and writer Emma Mills. With her expertise in psychology and training the field of mental health, Emma has uniquely combined her own passions for creativity, the arts and poetry with her continued work in wellbeing, meditation and mindfulness. With the world seeming like something of a turbulent place at times, I thought it would be a nice moment of peace to learn a little more about Emma, as well as pick up some advice on how to build a more peaceful foundation within our working and everyday lives. If this is an area you're interested in, or something you certainly feel that you need right now, then read on ...

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Hi Emma, could you begin with an insight into your training and career to date as well as what it is that you do now?

From a young age, I had an interest in spirituality. During my school years, I was also particularly interested in politics, and psychology. I would read a lot of psychology books and go to political rallies and protests keen to find out about how life worked and how to improve it. I studied both politics and psychology and worked briefly at the Houses of Parliament before deciding that psychology was the field that allowed me the best chance to offer and understand something good. I took a degree in psychology and then began to work and train in mental health at the charity Mind.

At Mind, I trained in several therapeutic mediums one of which was the use of poetry and classic literature as a wellbeing device. I'd always been a bookish person, but this was the beginning of my love affair with poetry which deepens every day and keeps on getting better. During this time I set up my own private practice in the city of London and began working with people sharing what I had learnt in group classes and one to one sessions; I also began blogging about my experiences and ideas. Now I consult, write and teach on the topic of meditation, working with companies and organisations, with individuals and in small groups as well as sharing written articles with magazines and publications.

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

You're an expert in the practice of meditation how did you train in this area and what is it about meditation that you love that you feel can be so beneficial for us all in our working and everyday lives?

During my time working in formal psychology, I had my own private interest in meditation and spiritual life. I was also studying with a very lovely teacher. I found during my years in mental health that meditation wasn't accepted or admired and so I kept it just as something I did outside of work. Things have changed now, and it’s all the rage, but back then it wasn't du jour! Whilst running my private practice I found myself increasingly encouraging people to meditate and to explore the inner world.

I felt that meditation, and most importantly what meditation points to - the experience and exploration of our nature, to be something that was quite in line with both my interest and my work with people. I still love psychology and think it's beautiful, a lot of my work is informed by the work I did in that field too. Meditation helps you to understand who you are and how you work which makes it fitting and helpful in many corners of life.

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

How can mindfulness help people - especially in the workplace?

I think meditation and mindfulness have great effects on a persons' orientation to life, and as work is part of life, it transfers over quite nicely. Stress is a big factor at work, and meditation and mindfulness can help a person to cope with that stress and make choices that are to their benefit. Aside from stress, meditation is tremendous for creativity, new ideas and innovation. If we imagine our work as a something we are putting out into the world it can help us to make that contribution great. 

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

How can people with hectic lifestyles make time and space for meditation and mindfulness so that it can be a helpful tool rather than just another item to add to the to-do list?

If the person has the enthusiasm to do it, then I find they usually make time for it. Because the enthusiasm or interest is natural and spontaneous, they find the time. Not in a regimented way, each day, unless of course that's what they find themselves doing and they enjoy it. But they do it here and there. They find within themselves a natural turning towards those sorts of things, a book here, a little workshop there, a little practice at the weekend. Also, if people start doing it and it feels good and they see benefits, just like with fitness, this usually brings its own motivation, albeit in waves.

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Where did your love of poetry and writing come from and how does this passion connect in with your work?

Poetry is literatures answer to meditation. I cannot invite enough people to explore poetry. I have always loved to read, but whilst working at Mind I was sent to study with Professor Jane Davis in Liverpool, to study this therapeutic application of literature. I then came back and set up a therapy system in Essex for Mind. We ran for several years, it took while to get going, as poetry is a bit niche, but eventually we won a lot of money, expanded the groups and served a lot of people. The people who came, as well as myself, benefited hugely from this type of work. It’s phenomenal.

I have carried this use of poetry into my meditation work because it fits well. Poetry, or certain poems, talk explicitly about the inner world, and those well-articulated poems offer people a route to understanding - a way of putting words around their own inner experience. Some poems offer wisdom, others are more about life, the bare bones of life. When it's hard, when it's ecstatic, and I find these honest poems help us to feel connected, part of life, to know we aren't an isolated person on our own.

What is it that you love most about the work you do and what motivates you on a daily basis?

I love to connect with people, to share and share life, improve our lives together. In myself, I find the expression of the creative spirit makes me very enthusiastic. I have an interest that I follow, and the following of it feels good, and that brings its own motivation. For example, there are a few poets I really like, and I want to go and sit with them to understand their work better, so I email them and ask, and try to meet them. I’ve not got any intentions really, for it to go anywhere specifically or become something pre-defined. I just feel drawn to do that, and thrilled at the thought of spending time with them talking about poems. It brings its own motivation. You just keep following the thread - like this poem: The Way It Is by William Stafford.

 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

For readers interested in learning more about meditation and living more mindfully do you have any tips, tricks or resources that could help them to get started?

On my blog Emma Mills London there are over two hundred articles along with helpful videos and audio which you can begin using and exploring at home. Alongside that, I also have a new book entitled Inhale. Exhale. Repeat. In it, we explore meditation over the course of a typical working day. It has a section called ‘at the office’ where we explore work, creativity, co-workers and finding balance. I hope that sharing meditation in this way will make the insights very usable and relevant to our lives. I would also recommend reading books, visiting teachers you like and connect with, following your own path and interest in the subject.

When it comes to looking after your own work-life balance and wellbeing how do you like to unwind after a busy day and make sure you feel refreshed and refocused for the rest of your week?

I like having a bath or two, reading a book, going for a bike ride, doing a little yoga and being with my loved ones.  

 
 Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Photo Credit: Emma Mills London

Thank you to Emma for sharing an insight into her career and her brilliant work. I hope you've found it as fascinating and inspiring as I have. As a lover of the arts I can totally understand the connection between creativity and our wellbeing. If this is a passion of yours, albeit an alive one or a lost one, I hope that this interview sparks in you the desire to seek out that creative, artistic side and in doing so, find greater expression, peace and understanding. For more motivation and ideas you can also find Emma over on Twitter and on Instagram.

Thanks for tuning in lovely people and see you again very soon.

Louise

 


Discussing The Power Of Positivity And Everyday Coaching With Kim Morgan

FINDING VALUE, MAKING POSITIVE CHANGES AND BREAKING THROUGH BARRIERS

We all have those nagging little voices in our heads that try to tell us we're not doing well enough, that try to psych us out at the crucial moments we need to be at our best, those annoying worries and moments of doubt. Sometimes we just need a helpful prompt to guide us back onto a more positive and fulfilling train of thought. To remind us to behave in an affirmative manner more often and assist us in overcoming the many obstacles that work and life can put in our way.

Today I'm happy to be sharing an interview with the very inspiring Kim Morgan, Managing Director of Barefoot Coaching and one of the UK's foremost business and personal coaches. Kim shares with us what it is that led her into the world of coaching, how coaching can benefit us all as well as some really top tips for valuing yourself, your life and your career. So without further ado ...

 Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Hi Kim. Please could you begin by giving us a little insight into your career to date and what it is that you do now?

For the past 20 years I have been the owner and Managing Director of Barefoot Coaching. I launched the company when the concept of coaching was in its infancy and have seen the whole world of coaching and personal development grow into the huge and exciting industry it is today. We offer University Accredited Coach Training programmes, one to one coaching and a whole range of personal development events and courses. I have a monthly column in Psychologies magazine and am currently writing my second coaching book. We produce a lovely range of coaching cards for everyone to be able to use coaching in their daily lives – at work or with their families.

 Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

What was it that drew you towards the world of coaching and to set up your own business in this area?

I had been working as a therapist and a specialist trainer in confidence and assertiveness before I set up Barefoot Coaching so the world of personal development was not new to me.  

I was drawn to coaching because it brought together all the very best concepts from the worlds of therapy, sports coaching, personal development, management and business development in an individual 1:1 offering. Having coaching doesn’t assume that anything about you or your life is “broken” and needs fixing. On the contrary, it’s a positive intervention to help you get the best out of your life, work and relationships. 

As soon as I knew about it, I had a feeling that coaching was going to be big. I wanted to train coaches and bring into that, some of the valuable lessons from my own training in therapy. I also knew that I wanted to offer an accredited course. In 2001 I launched our first Postgraduate Certificate in Business and Personal Coaching. I think I had about 5 people on the first course and most of them were my friends! Now we run courses throughout the year in London and the East Midlands and have thousands of students who have completed the course with us. 

What is it that you love most about the work you do and what motivates you on a daily basis?

Honestly, if this doesn’t sound too cheesy, training people to be able to coach others, thinking about how many people we have trained and in turn, how many people they have helped all around the world. 

I also love seeing the growth and development of our students into successful business owners too. Some of our alumni have done Ted talks, written books, become successful bloggers or developed a reputation for a specific coaching niche. It excites me to have “grown” all these amazing coaching entrepreneurs.

How can coaching help people in their everyday lives whether in the workplace or at home?

Coaching can help in any of the following ways:

  • Navigating your way through life stages or transitions: changing jobs, having a baby, redundancy, getting married, retirement, starting a business, ending a relationship, planning a new career
  • Searching for fulfilment: planning for the life or career of your dreams, identifying your values and what you really want from life, finding your purpose
  • Managing yourself and being the best you can be in terms of: health, fitness, work, relationships, behaviours
  • Preparing for: a job interview, a special event, public speaking, a particular challenge
  • Providing a confidential sounding board: someone to listen to you, challenge and support you to achieve your goals in life and give you a sense of perspective.
 Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

When it comes to your career what’s the one piece of advice you wish you could go back and give your younger self?

That’s a great question but it’s hard to choose just one piece of advice as I think I made so many ‘mistakes’ along the way! If I had to have just one it would be:

Value yourself and what you are offering. That means:

  • Deciding on your fee structure and sticking to it
  • Resisting the impulse to over-deliver (giving away your time)
  • Believing that what you are doing is making a difference
  • Not discounting your skills and recognising all of the time, energy, training and investment you have put in to being able to do what you do.

For anyone reading who has a passion for helping others and is interested in the world of coaching could you advise how you train to become a coach?

Well, when I launched my coach training course in 2001, it was one of the only courses available, but now there are so many that it can feel like a minefield for someone looking for the “right” course. I would always advise choosing an accredited course, asking lots of questions and ensuring you attend an open day or taster sessions before signing up.

Work wellbeing and work-life balance are important topics here on The What Now Blog so I’m intrigued to know if you have any tips for keeping balance in your life and if it’s something that you believe can be achieved?

This question made me smile because I confess to working a lot! For a long time I felt bad because I didn’t have the “work-life balance” I thought I was meant to have. Then one day someone asked me a great question, which changed my perception of my life and work: “Does your work nourish you?” It certainly does. I live and breathe my business and I am passionate about it.

My motto for my life could be the old saying “find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life".

I realise that for most entrepreneurs, the idea of work-life balance is different. My family and friends are involved in the business in a number of ways. My daughter works alongside me in the business, which is a source of great pleasure for me. I have the freedom to take time out whenever I want to. It’s a different kind of work-life balance and it works for me. I think everyone has their own unique requirements for their blend of work-life balance and we should think about what an ideal blend is for us, before feeling too guilty that we haven’t done early morning yoga or taken up a new hobby recently.

When it comes to looking after your own wellbeing how do you like to unwind after a busy day and make sure you feel refreshed and refocused for the rest of your week?

Guilty secret: Unwinding at the end of a busy day usually means some easy watching tv shows with a glass of red wine in hand. Oh how I wish I had said 15 mins of mindfulness practice but I thought I would tell it like it is!

 Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Photo Credit: Barefoot Coaching

Thank you to Kim for sharing her wealth of knowledge and experience here on the blog today. Personally I've always been interested in the world of coaching and it's been great to learn a little more and have time to think about what it can do to help us. Not only that but with the beautiful selection of coaching cards that Kim has put together we can all bring a little of that daily coaching and positivity into our lives.

I was lucky to get the chance to view a pack of the Coaching Cards for Every Day as pictured above and I absolutely love them. Look out for a further review and giveaway involving these lovely cards coming up on the blog in a few weeks time. Just in time to get your hands on some goodies ahead of the festive season!

In the meantime if you can't wait to check out the range of these beautiful cards why not have a look at the Barefoot Coaching Cards gift range. For more information on the range go to www.barefootcoachingcards.com/life or follow Barefoot Coaching on Twitter and Instagram.

Have a great week everyone!

Louise