Meet our 2018 Best Newcomer winner, Katie Stoddart as she shares how coaching radically transformed her life and empowered her, just 4 months after she discovered coaching, to kick start a fresh and truly rewarding career from her several-year engineer role. We hope you enjoy reading Katie’s inspiring journey…
What brought you to coaching?
For some time, I had wanted to work with people but I was unsure what exactly I wished to do. What I read about coaching interested me, so I went to The Coaching Academy’s Free 2-Day event.
I remember showing up at The Coaching Academy’s 2-Days and reading the sign: ‘This course can change your life’. I smiled at it and thought to myself that it was nothing more than a catchy slogan. Since then, I have reflected with amusement more often than once that this event was one of my greatest turning points and has radically changed the direction of my life.
What was your profession before becoming a coach?
I worked as an engineer at sea as a hydrographer, mapping the sea floor. It was interesting and adventurous for several years until I realised that I was a lot more passionate about people than data and wanted to change career to be fully involved in helping others.
What was the most rewarding part of the training/journey?
The coaching world was so fascinating. I was pinned to my seat (at the 2-day course) from the Saturday morning to the Sunday evening; my head buzzing with dreams, leaving my comfort zone, practical tools on self-development, and basically how to kick start my life again. It was then that I realized I could take full responsibility of my life and the actions I put in place to get where I wanted to be: a ground shaking realisation that shattered all the glasses of my ‘comfort zone’ ivory tower and got me moving!
What did you find most interesting to learn?
The best learning from was how to really fully connect to another person, putting aside my ego, my thoughts, my advice, and really listen to what the other person is feeling and saying. This might sound simple, but it isn’t and once I knew how to really fully be present for another person, it changed all of my relationships – it is truly a wonderful skill to learn.
How did the qualification slot in with your current life?
From then on, I took it one step at a time. First, I enrolled at The Coaching Academy (wondering: ‘Am I mad to do this course when 2 days ago I hardly knew what coaching was?’, ‘Is this really worth the investment?’ Yes, yes, a million times yes! The buzz from the week-end, the inspiring people I had met, and the total sense of alignment I had felt during the week-end and the shifting of my mindset all said YES).
Then, I began to coach more and more and more, fitting in the coaching sessions between my months at sea. I plunged into the modules, absorbed all the content of the webinars, and read a lot (I recommend The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – although not a coaching book per se, it is a fantastic book on how to improve your life in so many ways).
All of this led me to leaving my job very fast – only four months later (so I handed in my resignation barely three months after signing up with The Coaching Academy). I had determination and purpose, so I was off!
Where are you now? How are you using your coaching skills?
Since then, I coached loads; set up my business, got coached a lot (that helped so much! My coaches are brilliant!) and just dived head in the water into this whole new world.
I have helped dozens of people on their journey and work mostly with entrepreneurs & startups, focusing on Productivity (Time management, managing projects and getting what you want from your business fast & efficiently) & Wellbeing (Managing stress/anxiety, Life/work Balance, Self-confidence). As I truly believe that to be really successful in your business (and life), it is crucial to manage your mindset, health and life/work ratio as you go along.
What is your coaching niche and why did you choose it?
My coaching niche is Entrepreneurs because it is both a challenge to make your own business work and also to maintain a healthy life outside of the world of entrepreneurship. It is wonderful to see how both the private life & professional life influence each other and helping entrepreneurs to find that balance & thrive both personally and professionally.
Your top tip for those coaches currently in training?
Stick at it. Have a coach (this was, and still is, such a tremendous help!). Coach as much as possible, so as to improve your potential, build your self-confidence and check how much you are ready to commit to coaching. Keep track of your progress, continue to learn & grow and celebrate your successes!
On a last note
My life has well and truly been transformed since I discovered coaching. All thanks to that very first spark that got me to that first free 2-Day Event at The Coaching Academy. Success comes first and foremost from taking action, showing up and then persevering. I am truly grateful for everything I have learned thanks to The Coaching Academy, for their professionalism, their fantastic tutors, their materials, their recommendations, and all the wonderful people I have met. What a great journey it has been during that time, since then – and now it continues!
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Procrastination is the avoidance of doing a task that needs to be accomplished. Whether it’s putting off a work project, avoiding daily chores or even postponing your long-held goals, procrastination is an easy pitfall that even the most productive people can fall into. In fact, around 95% of us will procrastinate at one point or another, according to research by psychologist Dr Pier Steels.
Before agreeing to attend The Coaching Academy’s 2-Day event with a friend who really wanted to go, I had no idea what coaching was. I definitely came into it with an ignorant and cynical view about 'fluffy’ life coaches, determined not to be 'taken in’ by any of it.