Every health professional can probably point to a certain circumstance or life event that helped guide them to that role.
For me, my journey began about 6 years ago. I was struggling with a mix of health issues (skin, hormonal, emotional) and decided to pursue holistic care. I consulted a nutritionist for just under a year with few results to speak of. Next, I started meeting regularly with a naturopathic doctor and continued for about 9 months. The answers I longed for weren’t rushing to the surface, but the support I felt from this doctor was night-and-day difference from the first nutritionist. I could tell that the naturopath genuinely cared about my health challenges as well as my frustrations in not seeing answers despite intense effort.
Over a year later, I chose to work with another naturopathic doctor and started to see a few signs of progress in my physical health. About this same time, I enrolled in Huntington College of Health Sciences and started studying nutrition. Along the way, I had the opportunity to work with wellness programming for two 3-month periods at my local hospital. It was during one of these internships that I first discovered Wellcoaches and heard a bit more about the health coaching model. Something clicked. A candle started to flicker. My passion for coaching was kindled.
Upon graduation from college, I decided to pursue health coach certification. Initially, I planned to enroll in a program that offered no person-to-person interaction, but it was reasonably priced and only a few months long. However, after consulting a few trusted individuals in the healthcare field—one of them had been through Wellcoaches herself—I switched course and signed up to be a part of the January 2016 Core Coach Training cohort. Even before the training started, I had such positive expectations of what the experience would be like. I was not disappointed.
During the first teleclass on January 19, I decided to speak up despite the butterflies I felt in my stomach and my uncertainty about what I could offer in a class of so many professionals with years of experience in their fields. However, once I moved past the initial fear, it started to get easier to volunteer in demonstrations with the instructors or express my recent “aha” moments in coaching. The nerves weren’t gone by any means, but I was talking in every class and feeling more confident every time I pressed the “1”.
My learning partner assignment was also an incredibly rich part of my journey at Wellcoaches. Kelsey and I connected via email after the first teleclass and scheduled a time to Skype later in the week. From that first interaction, we bonded; we grew as coaches; we were honest about our challenges; and we encouraged each other to keep pressing “onward and upward” as Coach Meg says.
January turned into February, and February into March, and each week I felt more confident in my coaching skills and was excited to learn more and have more dynamic interactions. (I’ll come back to describe this term in more detail shortly.)
By April, the assignments turned to creating your own wellness vision with the assistance of another coach-in-training. The dominant theme that surfaced for me could be summarized in one word…thriving. To this end, I came up with a list of activities that I believed cultivated that thriving feeling. And one of those was…dynamic interactions. From my journal, “What Makes Me Feel Like I Am Thriving?”: “dynamic interactions with individuals that challenge me to be my best self (e.g., coaching with classmates/practice clients).”
From my first encounter with Wellcoaches (during the internship) to the actual Core Coach Training to my Skype sessions with Kelsey, I knew health coaching was something special for me.
Through the development of my wellness vision I was able to see why: the dynamic interactions of coaching were intricately connected to my best self’s ideal of thriving. Coach. Connect. Thrive.
Hannah Ewing is a Certified Wellcoach with a passion for everything coaching-related. She facilitates the Facebook group WELLNESS COACHES UNITED, where she connects with coaches all over the United States and even internationally. She is also the owner of HANNAH’S HEALTH COACHING, LLC, and spends much of her time building this business.