How I got interested in coaching?
It was a bit of a painful way, I guess my way of learning is that I have to experience things.
I used to work in the human resources departments of international companies, doing basically everything from recruiting people, organizing and being part of assessment centers, e.g. finding executives, seeing to the German labor law, a pretty strong part in German companies.
I was working for a bigger German company when I became the victim of workplace harassment. At first, I ignored it, and just went on working, pretending I could deal with it. Eventually, I changed my job, and three years later, when I had my son, everything broke down over me and I found myself in a deep crisis.
My self-esteem was extremely low. Even daily tasks, such as shopping, became difficult for me.
As the clerk looked at me and waited to take my order, I would get nervous and start kind of stammering and my sentences came out rather jumbled.
My whole attitude had changed; often I wore grey jogging pants and just wanted to be left alone.
How did I get out of there?
I began working on myself. I also believe that there is a reason for the experiences we have – that there is sense in it, that it’s good for something. We all have our talents, things we should be doing.
Last June, I started my coaching training with ICA.
What got me interested in coaching?
I really used to like my boss, the one who was the source of all my pain. In fact we used to have a good relationship. He got me interested in people, what makes them change the way they do. It made me realize that (most) people are not bad so I started studying them, and myself. Before I started with ICA, I was at a point where I saw the problems many people have but I didn’t know how to help them. I found that painful in a way. Looking back, it feels like a miracle but with the help of ICA I’ve learned to help those people and not only them but also myself.
There is this wish inside me to help people in need and I find it most wonderful to accompany them on their way
How are you using coaching to make a difference?:
I have been teaching English for 16 years. A student of mine gave me the idea to start my own business. It took me quite some time to take this step, but when I finally got to that point, I had to summon up all my courage to go to the shops to distribute my flyers. I often thought to myself, “Who am I to teach English?” I did it anyway. I took slow but stable steps. That was two years ago. Now, I’ve got a small language school for English, I’m working with other freelance trainers and I’m on the way to establish a small language school for other languages, too. It’s not a large school by any means, but it’s a great balance to my family life. How I’m using my coaching skills? By helping people who might be in a similar situation, who’re stuck in their lives, who have a lack of self-esteem and a lack of structure, people who want to find out about what they would love to do, people who simply want to live a happy and fulfilled life. I know exactly what it feels like when you’re in a sorry state AND I also know what it feels like when you live at peace with yourself. I hope I can show people that it’s possible to get there. So, my areas of coaching: life as well as health & wellness.
What was the most valuable thing you learned at ICA?:
I had an interview with an English trainer for my language school who was doing her coaching training at ICA at the time. (She graduated last year and she’s a great trainer.) I got hooked and wanted to hear more about coaching. I went to see her and she told me about ICA. I also phoned Teresa Haines to find out more about ICA. She was very patient and friendly answering all my questions. I’m a gut feeling person, so everything seemed very good and ICA is international. Doing a coaching training with a German company would somehow have been too limiting for me. I felt that I could learn a lot in this international atmosphere. In the beginning I was a bit overwhelmed. I’m not much of a “manual reader” but do you know what? Going through all the papers helped me to learn it. I had to apply it recently to something else and I just remembered my experience with those ICA papers and that gave me confidence. The curriculum is very user-friendly, of course I can only speak for myself but I never had problems fitting in the lessons. The community: It’s absolutely great! Most wonderful and helpful people. I’ve met very special people. On the whole ICA provides a very safe environment to learn coaching. The personal impact: It’s changed a lot in my life. I had already been working on myself before I started with ICA but attending those teleclasses, reading the material, meeting the trainers and the other students were and still are the icing on the cake. I’ve also learned to be a lot less critical and judgmental towards myself and other people and it feels simply good. I’m also more focused and structured now. I can say now that I live at peace with myself, I don’t get so easily overwhelmed by my emotions anymore. And I’ve also learned to look at other areas of my life to find a balance between my body, mind and soul. The most valuable things I’ve learned? The answers are all within us! I don’t feel the desperate need to help other people anymore. I still want to help but it’s not desperate anymore. I’ve learned that we are where we should be at the time, to accept the individual learning process and to hold myself back. Of course, I’m still learning, still making mistakes but I’ve also learned to accept them and grow through them. After all we’re all human, right? And that makes it so interesting and wonderful! I’d like to mention one trainer who was (I guess still is ) a most wonderful sounding board for me: Nick Bosk. I’ve learned a lot from him and I very much appreciate the time he took to help me grow.