My Coaching Philosophy:
1) Who are you?
a. Understanding your own core motivations, values, desires, fears, virtues and faults. All the good stuff. All the scary stuff!
2) What do you want?
a. Knowing who you are enables genuine knowledge of what you want to invest your valuable time and energy doing… or not doing. You don’t always need to be doing.
3) How will you get there?
a. Strategising, goal setting, planning, making actions, keeping accountable! This is 'performance coaching' in its entirety.
4) Screwing up.
a. This is where you learn to self-coach. Throughout our relationship, we will both be humans (screw up). That’s ok. In fact, its better than ok, its sort of the whole point. Through self-awareness and exploration, you will understand why and how to deal with it on your own and, most importantly, to accept it - and accept yourself.
Thus, the true goal of my coaching is to turn you into a SELF-COACH. To empower you! Not only to achieve your desires, but accept yourself.
I'm Elliot. I like deep conversations. I like getting to the bottom of things. I believe almost everyone has the solutions to their own problems within them already. I believe we already know where we need to go, how to get there, and what is holding us back.
I know from experience that unlocking this wisdom in a coherent, gentle and useful way is the real trick. This may happen on its own, eventually, but the trial and error in getting there is painful, complicated and messy. I struggled for years. This is where I see value in Coaching.
To address the elephant in the room - I am not middle aged and I do not fit the stereotype of a Coach. I am 27 and am the proud owner of a man-bun.
At this point you probably fit into one of four categories:
1) So what?
2) Great - this is exactly what I want.
3) I'm apprehensive, but I'll keep reading
4) Simon Cowell: It's a no from me.
4's, I understand, first impressions mean a lot, and clearly it wont work for us. All the best.
1's and 2's, thanks for being open. Keep reading, get a feel for my style and get in touch for a trial session. Don’t stop searching until you find exactly the coach/help you desire.
3's - I'm not a salesman, you'll either love me or you…. Won't. By explaining just some of the experiences of my life, I hope to dispel any dogmatic thoughts of greater age meaning greater experience. I have been to crisis point, and come out of it stronger. I'm humble enough to know there will be other personal revolutions and crises in the future and that there are many experiences am entirely unable to empathise with. Read on and let your gut intuition guide.
Thank you for interest in workong with me and work on yourself. You've already taken the most important and challenging step - Accepting there is room for genuine improvement. Most people never get that far.
I'm looking forward to working with you.
I was lucky enough to get to crisis point earlier than most. Four years building a career as an unpaid intern in financial speculation, living in a van to enable 60 hour weeks, stripped away in a month along with my savings. Leaving an idyllic lifestyle in the Canadian mountains. Questioning my entire belief and values system and how it got me to this place. Being so exhausted from stress and anxiety that, for the first time ever, I had no inspiration or desire to work towards a better future.
I had been close a few times before - but had scraped by and picked up where I left off.
Strangely enough, I wish it had come sooner.
Life ebbs and flows. Things go wrong. We start to get a low-level feeling of misalignment, some background feeling of anxiety, stress or low mood. This is a normal place to be.
'But, haven't I been here before?' When this thought begins to appear, some take action. The beauty of taking action here is that it requires 'evolution'; smaller changes that are easier to make, as opposed to 'revolution'; a complete perspective change, scary to face and difficult to pull off. Realising there is actually an issue, at this stage, is an art form all on its own.
Most, myself included, either mis-diagnose or ignore the thought, perhaps making some cosmetic changes, until business as usual resumes. This will likely seem and feel, at the time, like a win. Getting back on the horse.
However, it is symptomatic of something very wrong. A misalignment of who you Are, what you Want and what you are Doing. Ignoring the symptoms long enough, eventually, most of us get there. We call it a mid life crisis, or a quarter life crisis, as is becoming more common, or a blip. When there is no horse to get back on. Some spend their money on an entirely different breed of steed.
The truth is, most of us, myself included, would rather live as if it's all fine, than do the work needed to face up and discover who we Are, what we Want, what we should Do, and the beliefs we never knew we had. Most of us are scared to realise that our day to day life doesn't reflect what we really want or need, or what others perceive us to be. I respect you for making the decision to search for a coach, it is brave to admit something isnt right. We can easily trick ourselves into continuing indefinitely and normalise the discomfort/pain to the point we barely notice it.
For me, that was anxiety. My baseline level was so high, I had no idea it was even there! In the 7 years leading up to crisis point, I spent almost all of my energies on 'relentless self-betterment' (to quote a close friend) - which I wore as a badge of honour. I self diagnosed myself with chronic fatigue, and tried everything you could imagine to fix it:
• Doctors (they all said nothing was wrong with me)
• Intense diets (7 day water only fast, anyone?)
• Insane sleep schedules (20 minute naps every 4 hours - no more)
• Bogus 'cleanse's' (essentially poisoning myself)
Alongside all of this, I was intent on being the most efficient, intelligent, well-rounded (I misinterpreted the meaning), multi skilled, impressive, successful example of a human that ever lived. I wanted control. Control over as many aspects of my life as possible. I collected and installed all sorts of habits, routines, life 'hacks'… Clearly I had no lack of imagination, discipline and 'motivation'.
What I did lack, however, was self awareness.
For 6 years, I was given constant signals - the fatigue, the burnout, high stress/anxiety, mood swings, friends and loved ones suggesting I 'chill the f*ck out', an inability to sit still and, most of all, an insidious, creeping, background feeling that things weren't quite 'right'. I now understand this was my gut/intuition/instinct/heart/soul, whatever you want to call it, crying out - but I had lost touch with it, preferring to outsource my decisions to those I perceived as 'gurus', copying aspects of their lives in a vain attempt to control my own.
Back to crisis point.
In my state of bleak desireles-ness, the only thing that appealed to me in the slightest, was a written exercise in self awareness (not that I understood it as that at the time). I identified and wrote extensively about both my most desirable and least desirable future, self-perceived faults and virtues, as well as a little about my past.
I wrote for a month. 4 hours a day. It was empowering, challenging, inspiring, jolting, revealing, slightly addictive and ultimately life changing.
As it turns out, I was answering coaching questions.
Inspired, and struck by a fierce desire to share this awe inspiring change with others, becoming a coach myself seemed by far the most worthy career choice. In the spirit of complete honesty, the fact that it also allows freedom of time and place, whilst still paying well, certainly didn't hurt my desire to pursue a coaching career. Within 5 months I was qualified and had my own coaching practice.
I don’t put this down to discipline, motivation, 'hustle'… I put it down to self awareness - to understanding, finally, my values, my core motivations, my deepest desires (and fears). For my personality type, that is the tricky part. Armed with that knowledge, the right actions and path came naturally. Strategising/goal setting and following through was the easy part for me; as long as the path is aligned with the values, 'discipline' and 'motivation' are necessary far less often. Since then, of course, there have been many mistakes, difficulties and… surprises! All of which provided incredible value as experiences to grow and learn from. All I had understood on the intellectual level was re-enforced through experience. True learning.
Why am I telling you all of this?
First, honesty and vulnerability. These are two of my highest values. Vulnerability is something I myself received much coaching for - and it has brought so much joy (and challenge) into my life. I am human, I have flaws - I don’t think its right to portray myself as a guru, or perfect, or as a source of invaluable advice. In a coaching relationship, the onus is on you to be vulnerable. Without doubt, the way to get the most from coaching is by being the most vulnerable and honest (foremost with yourself) you can be. I believe the more open I am, the more willing you are.
Second, to create an image of myself that you either can or cannot relate to. To give us the best possible chance of matching your needs as a Coachee to my strengths, experiences (and weaknesses!) as a Coach.
Having said that, there are two schools of thought within Coaching. One promotes 'pure' coaching, wherein the less the Coach can relate to the specific situation of the Coachee, the more successful the application of the various Coaching techniques will be. The Other promotes finding a 'niche' and coaching within that, to benefit the Coachee with specific advice and experience of the Coach. I don’t have a firm belief either way.
Trust your intuition.
So, if you feel that working with me seems right for you, please get in touch. Having detailed my philosophy and approach above, here are the ways I can help:
1) Introductory Session. Free of charge.
a. Experience some coaching and decide whether you see potential.
b. Experience each others style and personality. We must both feel a good fit.
c. Understand what a coaching program involves and aims to achieve.
2) 7 session program. 3 months. £500.
a. The complete package, covering all four parts of my coaching philosophy:
i. Who are you?
ii. What do you want?
iii. How will you get there?
iv. Screwing up.
b. Sessions take place in person or online.
c. Each session is 50 minutes.
3) The homework program + 1 follow up session. Takes long as you like. £150
a. For those who know they will do the work at their own pace, who will open up more on the page than in person, or looking for a thriftier option.
b. You are provided with a written exercise plus instructions, that aims to achieve a similar level of insight and self awareness to my 7 session package, covering all four parts of my coaching philosophy.
c. I will be available to answer questions that arise as you go.
d. One follow up session of 45 minutes, to be undertaken at your leisure.
4) Individual follow up/ad-hoc sessions. £75 per session.
a. Only after completing one of my programs, unless a compelling case is made.
b. 60 minutes per session.
c. Topic of your choice - the session is entirely yours.
5) Whatsapp 'Voice Note' Coaching. £30 per 30 mins. Pay as you go.
a. We exchange voice notes, which are audio recordings made on Whatsapp, as if we were having a regular coaching conversation
b. Difference being that replies/answers/questions come at a time that suits you. Our coaching relationship can last as long or as short as you like.
c. For those who want to be coached as and when they please, those who prefer not to commit to a long conversation, or those who only have small topics to be coached on.
d. 30 mins = total time of your + my recordings (Whatsapp tracks this). Just like a regular coaching session.
Full instructions provided.
Elliot and I met through a friend of mine, old client of his. I have been coached on and off by him for a while now.
He is a great coach - young and enthusiastic enough to get you fired up, yet wise and mature enough to keep it down to earth. His 4 step approach seemed like overkill to me, but I believe in it now.
If youre not sure whether or not you need coaching... then you do!!
Elliot and I undertook 6 coaching sessions over the period of 3 months, at fortnightly intervals. I was blown away by the depth with which we could reach in just 6 hours.
As a coach, Elliot demonstrates, most of all, vulnerability and self-awareness. I felt listened too and understood - and was able to follow his example and be honest with myself.
I went into coaching not quite knowing what was wrong. I came out with a fundamental understanding of myself. This has been a springboard for moving forward.
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