I never thought I would be a life coach. Heck I didn’t think I would ever be life COACHED. I had no idea what that meant until a few years ago. Welcome to the first part of my life coaching journey, where I will describe why I desperately needed someone to root for me!
When I was a young teen I dreamt of becoming a writer or a speaker. I could imagine myself on a best selling book tour, speaking to thousands and sharing my message. What was that message? I didn’t quite know. But the dream was there.
Cut to my twenties, at this point in my life I had had MANY ups and downs emotionally and psychologically. I often let the drawbacks of introvert behavior inform my personality. Descriptors like ‘weird’, ‘shy’, and ‘awkward’ took over my psyche and I was convinced that I didn’t deserve a great job, quality relationships or belief in myself.
But there I was, living day in and day out as people who are lost tend to do. Entertaining ideas of suicide, hating everything about myself and not reaching for my dreams. I mean, no one really CHANGES, right?! (insert rolling eyes emoji)
‘If you’re going through hell, keep going’ -Winston Churchill
I hit a point where I realized I didn’t fit in. I woke up one day, a freshman in high school, and recognized I had no friends and had no desire to be like anyone else. I was going to be WEIRD! And, well, I was weird but not for the right reasons. My behavior was all an act, I didn’t know who I was so I pretended to be this other person (who had no friends or social skills mind you)!
I was depressed. Self esteem non existent. Belief in the future…what would that feel like???? I continued with this alternative persona on and off through college.
A few experiences that this low state offered me:
- Poor (VERY poor) significant other choices. Let me tell you narcissistic, unsupportive jerks LOVE to prey upon the insecure. Because they know they can get whatever they want from these women. Gals with low self esteem have a higher rate of divorce because they settle for men who do not treat them with love and respect. That could have easily been me had I not forged on to find Mr. Giddy.
- Less than satisfactory job selection. I worked in so many WRONG fields, in positions where I was miserable and would dread going to work every single day. This is no way to live. If you hate your job giddiness isn’t even an option.
- Pathetic money choices. I would spend every single cent I earned (at the jobs I hated) on meaningless material wares. I used shopping as my crutch and would run out to a store when I felt anxious, depressed or just plain bored. Shopping didn’t bring me joy, it brought me an addiction issue and deprived me of a savings account. Beware of misguided replacement therapy my friends!
- Overall lack of work ethic. This one is hard to admit because as a bright young woman I had many aspirations. But when one’s self esteem is so low there is no motivation to rise above your current status. Comfortability settles in and that is why you see so many people stuck in dead end jobs and with partners that don’t truly support them.
- Obsessive tendencies. I felt like I didn’t have any control with my relationships or career so I would obsessively fine tune my diet, exercise and outward appearance. It took me many years to step back and see what was truly important in life (Hint: it wasn’t 12% body fat and the perfect blow out).
- Lack of quality relationships. I developed social skills very late in life, I’m not sure why but it’s the truth. Self awareness was not my strong suit! I had no idea how to create a conversation, meet new people or act in most social situations. Not knowing how to connect with others was extremely limiting in every single aspect of my life—negotiations, friendships, romance, career, networking, family, everyday interactions. Communication is EVERYTHING.
- Distance from God. I spent many years not trusting Him. I blamed Him for my lack of true relationships and fun experiences. But everything that was holding me back had nothing to do with God. Exactly the opposite. I was giving into the devil’s plans for me.
So….as you can see I didn’t have a lot going for me. I was completely lost and had no idea what to do. I had one great mentor as a high school/college student, Sara Weaver was the wife of my youth pastor. I’m sure I perplexed her quite a bit with my behavior but I remember talking with her shortly after I had started my freshman year of college. She asked if I’d met any friends or boys. I said ‘no’! because of course I didn’t have the guts to talk to anyone. She inquired what I was wearing to school and how I was wearing my hair…haha I know she was trying to see if I was being my fake ‘weird’ self again.
I slowly evolved from the fake persona but still struggled with my confidence. Though everything I must say I did have one thing that some depressed people lack – hope. I was always extremely hopeful that things would change and I would come out on top somehow, with my dream lingering in the back of my mind.
Being hopeful is great, but when there is no action behind the hope you cannot expect results.
I firmly believe that the only reason I made it out of my teens and twenties alive is because I worked with life coaches who taught me to invest in my future self and my faith in God keeping me from self harm. Had it not been for those two things I would have given into the devil’s voice whispering in my ear ‘You’ll never be good enough’…’No one likes you’…’You don’t deserve happiness’.
Many people get stuck at one these impasses. Cut important people out of their lives. Marry the wrong person. Make a huge career mistake. Give up altogether and commit suicide. Some of these you can recover from (with hard work), some of them you can never recover. Many hurt themselves as well as hurt others.
Our self belief (which is fueled my faith) is our most valuable asset.
My inexperienced introvert self kept setting success limits, she didn’t recognize her value. She just couldn’t see beyond her current scope at the time even though she did have that dream of helping others. It’s true that life can be limiting, but only because of what we tell ourselves. We all have a version of success in our future but it won’t be easy getting there.
We all know the sayings ‘nothing worth having comes easy’ and blah blah blah. I’m not telling you anything new! But I will tell you this. Introverts and ambiverts deserve contentment and excitement in their lives just as much as extraverts. We are equal and we are amazing! SO WHAT IS IT GOING TO BE?
Are you going to keep loafing on the couch watching the same old TV show, wishing you had a quality significant other and lugging yourself to the job you despise?
Your life will not be handed to you, you have to make it.
And to make it happen sometimes you need an accountability partner, someone to call you on your BS or simply someone to listen to your wants and needs. That is the definition of what I do as a life coach. Right now there is an amazing opportunity to win a 3 Month Confidence & Life Coaching Series with yours truly!
This whole lack of confidence thing isn’t a flippant issue. When your mental health is concerned attention must be paid. Stop waiting around wishing your dream life will appear. You deserve more than hope, you deserve action. I believe in your future self and I hope you do too.
Stay tuned for parts two and three of this series where I will share what it was like to be coached, go through certification and now help others!