My coaching journey
Updated: Jun 16, 2019
If the idea of reading part sob part triumph kind of stories make you want to dry reach, you might want to stop here. You've been warned.
The Early Years
For most of my life I believed life was meant to be a struggle, at least mine was. Growing up a first generation Australian with parents who were refugees, I was taught to hustle from an early age. Head down, work hard and "survive" so to speak. Sounds dramatic? Well sure, there was a fair bit of drama in our household. After all we were trying to establish ourselves in a new city/country from scratch. With no peeps who had our back.
As a kid I stood out like a sore thumb. Not only did I look different to everyone else, but I was a real shorty ( I still am). At school I wanted to blend in and be liked. I was the kid that would hand out lollies so that other kids would be friends with me. I must have reeked of desperation. Yet despite all that, there was always something inside me, a knowing which I felt in my bones that I was meant for more and different for a reason. Unfortunately, bad habits die hard and so I stayed small, put everyone before myself, compared myself to others, and started the process of staying out of touch with myself.
I felt like I was a victim to circumstances that were handed to me. I accepted that life was just meant to be unfair and dare I say, crap for me. I accepted that the only way to move forward was to hustle, push through life miserably and work hard because I had to. Even when things were fine, I chose to be miserable and always found a reason to be bitter. This way of thinking stuck with me for years and did me a lot of no good.
Major life choices I made in my late teens and early 20's (what I studied, what courses I applied for, which career) were never based on what I truly wanted or what was right for me or my passions- heck I was so disconnected I had no idea what I wanted or what I was passionate about! All my focus was based on proving myself to people and getting into line with the expectations of society. And somehow, I ended up as an Engineer. I made a huge choice to immerse myself in a career that had nothing to do with who I was, just to prove my worth and to be a someone. Hello ego right?
I let the world, the people who influenced me, and above all else, my ego dictate my life. I was too busy proving myself, instead of living. And I allowed it to be this way. I never allowed myself to be my own person.
Eventually, living this way catches up with you and sometimes you gotta put yourself through hell (and by hell I mean panic attacks, anxiety and depressive episodes) before you decide you've finally had enough and can start doing something about it.
That's exactly what happened to me and I was constantly wondering why I felt shit all the time. One day, I decided I was sick of how I chose to be in the world. I was sick of bickering, complaining, being judgemental. I was sick of feeling that someone or something owed me one. I was sick of making those around me miserable. And I was sick of creating my own hell. It was time to just stop.
Pulling yourself out of the fog takes a fair bit of back-and-forth and a lot of work, but like I said, sometimes it takes hitting rock bottom before you're really ready to make a change.
So from that point I decided I was going to start calling the shots in my life and I was going to take over. I realised that only I can change my reality and my circumstances so I started challenging my view of the world. I challenged myself and gave myself a good kick up the butt. I questioned my attitude and why I perceived things the way I did. I started read, listened to podcasts, meditated and I picked up yoga. I started taking care of myself and I decided it was time to get to know myself again. It felt as though I was getting to know a long lost friend.
From there I did the next hardest thing: I put an end to blaming and pointing the finger at everyone and everything for the way things turned out in my life and I accepted full responsibility. I stopped feeling sorry for myself and began accepting me for everything I am and what I did. I stopped believing the world was unfair. Just as old habits die hard, creating new ones takes time. It's pretty much rewiring the way we perceive ourselves and the world around us.
Looks a bit much^? This is the real deal for some people. Don't knock it until you try it.
When I started to notice my attitude change, I got clarity and the confidence grew. I stopped sweating the small stuff and started focusing on what's possible- not why I was doomed. I knew I had tapped into a part of me that I thought was lost or didn't know existed.
Suddenly all the back and neck aches improved. I was taking care of myself more and I was much easier to be around. I started got creative- painted, crafted, drew and played more with the kids. I sang more, danced and I became funny again (at least to my little ones). I was able to let go of stress and things that used to bother me, became irrelevant. I performed better at work and got promoted shortly after. People started coming to me for advice and asked me about what had changed.
I realised shit.. there's heaps of people out there experiencing some form of "self-separation" and burnout. I noticed similar behaviours in colleagues and friends. I would hear parts of my story come out in other people and think "yikes". I realised it is in fact, quite common.
With depression and anxiety on the rise, I think so much of our suffering comes down to our mindset and the disconnect from ourselves. We are the ones that hold ourselves back. And knowing this, just made me a bit sad. I don't wish what I experienced on anyone, because the fact of the matter is, we have so much potential. We only have one life, and at any time we have the ability and the power to make it count and live a rich, fulfilling life.
So after the long strides, after landing on the other side, I thought "Why not share some of this stuff?". How about I just offer a bit of piece of mind that it's not you per-se.. Well it kind of is.. But you can get through it. And so I trained to become a coach with a focus on mindset and personal development.
You might be thinking "oh god not another coach with a sob story talking about what they went through and how they ended up on top, after they thought all was lost..." Well fine, you're more than welcome to roll your eyes but at the end of the day, facts are facts. Mental health (a term I don't like to use that much) is the leading cause of GP visits in Australia. And I don't think all of a sudden, we're all becoming sick. Something ain't right. Clearly we're creating a culture that's not brining out the best of us and we've lost touch with ourselves. And posting about our lavish holidays, buying way too much shit that we don't need, escaping, ain't gonna fix it.
Anyways, this post, this website and my practice, are a testament to the growth and change I went through. Sometimes you gotta hit rock bottom before you can rebuild- trust me I'd know. So friend, it humbles me to be able to share this and my message with you. Hopefully it helps. If you can't relate, that's cool, maybe you'll enjoy some of the other stuff.
With love and peace,