I hope you are enjoying the 12 Days of Blogs. I can’t believe this post marks the halfway point of this blog series and only 2 days before the launch of a new decade. The new year also brings my launch into professional coaching, so I thought I would take some time today to share my journey from being lost to becoming a guide for others with you. Tomorrow I will share more about finding the right coach for you.
I need to start by expressing my gratitude to my coach, Rocco Cozza, for all the guidance on my journey. When I first hired him, I needed a change. I wish I had a photo of me during our first meeting. I didn’t have a clue on where to start. I felt beat-up and lost. My ego was devastated after being pushed out of my dream job. I had been out of work for about a year when I needed to fall back into project management to pay student loan debt. I had gone back to grad school to make a career change and get out of project management, so I felt a lot of time and money had been wasted. I expected Rocco would work with me to identify my skills, explore my interests, brush up my resume and help me find the next job. Instead he asked me to trust him in a series of exercises designed to get to know me better before he could coach me. It was through those exercises that he helped me uncover my creative entrepreneurial spirit. Those exercises also helped me connect the dots between my strength in facilitation, the power of improv for skill development and my desire to pay years of received mentorship forward. The result was Impactful Improv.
Even with my excitement and vision for Impactful Improv, a massive amount of student loan debt, and if being honest some self-doubt, kept me from leaving my relatively secure position even though I was miserable. It wasn’t the company or the position that made me miserable, it was the fact that it wasn’t the right fit for me. I was suppressing my authentic personality to fit their model and expectations which didn’t align to mine. Last December, I had finally reached a point where I knew I could no longer stay in my position. To get through the days, I set a countdown clock to my target resignation date. The first date came and went. I had not saved enough money and wasn’t ready to make the leap. Instead of giving up, I set a new date and worked with Rocco to keep me on track so this date would stick. A lot of people give me credit for being courageous to go out on my own. The truth is it took a lot of time to work up that courage. Even though it took time, my journey moved forward and I continued to grow.
When my August date finally came, I felt scared but excited to take the leap. A couple of weeks before my last day, Rocco planted the seed for me to become a coach. I was concerned since I am still a work in progress as a business owner, but he reminded me of the success I had in multiple transformations in my lifetime combined with a genuine heart to help people. He pointed out that in many of the interactions I shared during our sessions, I already do the work of a coach. I also struggled with how it would fit with Impactful Improv and the passion I had for improv inspired workshops. My coaching may have some improv elements, but I bring much more than that to my clients. As I successfully worked through my fall pilot, I realized I focused on the wrong word. The core of my brand is making a positive impact by serving my clients with my passions and talents. I still need to name the new coaching practice, but I need to remember the advice of Shakespeare’s Romeo that is not the name that counts. I am excited to offer my coaching “rose” with my inaugural event, IGNITE 2020, a mini retreat designed to fuel the fire of passion and disciplines to help others achieve their goals.
When I started Impactful Improv a couple of years ago, I wanted to have a positive impact on the way we interact as human beings. Today, I am grateful to Rocco for coaching me along this journey. While I still feel nervous, I could not be more excited to be expanding into coaching and continuing to work with Rocco to see what life’s journey will reveal next.