This week our Coach in The Spotlight is Sue Bassett, who proves it's never too late to begin, having started her coaching journey at 60 years of age as a grandmother of 11 children!
She now coaches members of her community through her church, volunteers at a charity to work with vulnerable young girls in Uganda, and continues to study for her NLP diploma. Read more about Sue’s inspiring story in the article below and get ready to feel excited about the unknown opportunities life has to offer!
Tell us a bit about yourself, Sue. What inspired you to enrol with The Coaching Academy?
My name is Sue Bassett, I am 63 years of age, married, a mother of three and by April I will have 11 grandchildren aged between 0 and 24 years old.
I was introduced to life coaching some 20 years ago by a pastor friend who was training as a life coach. Over the years we have kept in touch and I have always been intrigued by his work. About three years ago I was introduced to Brene Brown and became passionate about pursuing her materials around connection, courage and vulnerability. Whilst browsing her courses online, I came across The Coaching Academy's free two-day Foundation course. I booked in, went on the course and was hooked. The training was exciting and I felt like I had lit up inside.
The day after the foundation course I enrolled with TCA for the Personal Performance Diploma and the NLP course with both excitement and a little apprehension in my heart.
What was the most rewarding part of your training/journey?
The most rewarding part of becoming a life coach has been to see clients I have coached fulfilling their dreams and moving into new areas of confidence, even taking on new roles in their lives. The joy of hearing and watching this happen is more rewarding than anything else in my professional career. Before training as a life coach, I was a teacher working with pupils with behavioural difficulties who weren't able to attend mainstream school and more recently I have been involved in supporting my family with childcare.
How did you fit coach training into your busy life?
I committed to working through the Diploma as quickly as possible. It felt like I was working on 'overdrive' for the 14 months it took me to qualify and there were moments when I had to sacrifice a swim in the sea to make it happen. However, I committed to qualifying as I knew it was for a limited amount of time and the reward would be tremendous - being able to help others. Every time I coached someone I felt passionate about becoming the best Life Coach I could and threw myself into the experience.
Where are you now? How are you using your coaching skills?
Having qualified as a life coach a couple of months ago, I have two areas where I am using my new coaching skills. My church has committed to using life coaching as a tool under the umbrella of pastoral care and I am leading this project. I am working both with individuals and a small team and we aim to offer free sessions to people living in our community within three years.
I am also working with a charity, ‘an African Dream’, to visit Uganda in February where I will be working with vulnerable teenage girls using life coaching to aid them in setting up micro-enterprise projects.
What is your coaching niche and why did you choose it?
My heart is set on using my coaching skills to help people with goals in any area of their lives, however, I am starting to learn towards coaching around health and life balance, including time management and dietary issues.
My one regret is that I didn't qualify as a Life Coach earlier in my life. Having these skills when I was a teacher would have greatly changed my approach to pupils that were closed to learning. I would recommend learning life coaching skills to anyone, in any profession where you are interacting with other people.
What are your tips for people who are looking to become qualified as a professional coach?
The local group I joined at the start of my coaching journey has helped me feel connected with the coaching community. Like many people working from home, life coaches can feel quite isolated working on their own so I would recommend joining a local group and connecting with fellow students. Training days with The Coaching Academy also provide a platform for meeting others and exchanging contact details as well as using The Coaching Academy's Facebook page. Coaching and being coached by fellow students is a great way of practising and gaining experience as a life coach alongside all the benefits of peer to peer relationships.
Do you have any advice for those currently in training with TCA?
I am just about to embark on the NLP certificate course and I am feeling excited to carry on my learning adventure, becoming more self-aware and adding more skills to the 'toolbox' that I already have. I am also attending CPD days, I attended one recently on Confidence coaching. These days still help me feel connected to the coaching community whilst also expanding my knowledge base. I want to thank The Coaching Academy for their professionalism and their consistent support over the last 15 months.
If you're interested in finding out more about coaching, just like Sue Bassett did, start by joining us in our interactive live webinar. Choose from available dates here.
For many of us, the first days and weeks of January bring with it a desire to make a change. This is where habits come into the picture.
Stephen R. Covey's famous 'Begin with the end in mind' habit is a staple in the toolbox of a successful coach. If you've been wondering why to try it, how to put it in practice and even how to handle challenges that come with it - we're sharing it all in this article.