Why do you want to coach at Reset Retreat?
When I was told that I had been selected to be the life coach at Reset Retreat I literally jumped up and down and, honestly, there may have also been some squealing. I’ve admired the mission of Reset Retreat since it began and it is an honor to be chosen as the life coach for the February retreat. My passion for empowering women to create extraordinary lives is such a perfect fit for the Reset Retreat experience. Plus, I get to bask in all of this magic and transformation in Belize?! Heck yeah!
What are you most looking forward to at Reset Retreat?
I’m most excited about the connections that will be formed as we come together to grow, challenge our comfort zones and share our unique stories. Authentic connection between women is such a beautiful and powerful thing and I am so excited to be part of it.
Will you share what your life coaching ‘journey’ is all about?
I am very honest and candid about the fact that fear used to dominate my life. For a long time, most of my life decisions were ruled by fear, with a dash of insecurity and neediness thrown in for good measure. Don’t get me wrong, from the outside my life looked just fine; a “good job”, boyfriends, the right clothes…but, on a deeper level, I was unfulfilled and a little lost. If I’m honest, I was waiting for someone (AKA the “man of my dreams”) to come rescue me from my so-so life. I thought I wouldn’t have to create a life I loved, because this man would solve all of my problems. I think we all know how that plan turns out…
After doing things the same way with the same lackluster results, I decided that I needed to figure out how to create a life from which I wouldn’t want or need rescuing.
I always knew that I wanted to spend my time and energy helping people, but I wasn’t exactly sure how that passion would manifest in my life. Now, I firmly believe that everything I have experienced led me to where I am today. It’s funny, and a bit poignant, that the girl whose only dream was to be saved by Prince Charming is now a woman obsessed with helping other women own their greatness and create lives they love.
How did you get into life coaching?
As I mentioned, I’ve always had a gut feeling that I was meant to help others. I’ve always been intrigued by the human experience and I am naturally curious about what makes people tick. After working in politics for over 15 years, I realized that I wanted to help people in a more direct way. So, I started working on my master’s degree in Counseling at night while I worked full-time. I received my master’s degree several years ago and began working with clients using traditional therapy modalities. While I am a huge believer in the value of therapy, I eventually transitioned into life coaching and received nine months of intensive training at the highly regarded Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC).
What I love about coaching is that I am working with my clients to create exceptional, not just functional, lives. I believe we are meant to have lives that are full of magic and miracles. This is the kind of motivation and inspiration that I want to bring to my work and coaching allows me to do that.
What’s the most important tool/element you bring to someone?
I think it’s my empathy and personal experience of being a woman who has struggled with self-worth and countless other insecurities. I understand what it is like to live without a sense of grounding and purpose and I know it doesn’t feel good. I also know from personal and professional experience that it is possible to create a life you love! It’s this knowledge that fuels my passion for helping women find out what is getting in the way of their best life.
My education and training absolutely arm me with some amazing knowledge and tools. But, my top priority is creating an approachable and emotionally safe environment that encourages personal growth.
Oh, and I like to have fun! This personal growth thing doesn’t have to be void of laughter and some silliness. If you’re working with me, we’re going to have some fun. You can count on that.
Do you feel like you have life “all figured out” for yourself?
Haha. Absolutely not. I am, and always will be, a work in progress. I still experience fear and self-doubt in my life. The difference is, I don’t listen to those negative gremlins as much as I used to. I have worked to create a life and a mindset that is strong enough to challenge those pesky little suckers.
What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten, and what’s the best you’ve ever given?
Oh gosh. I have had so many amazing friends, mentors and teachers in my life, it’s hard to choose. But, the advice “feel the fear, but do it anyway” has been a powerful message for me. I used to think that if I felt any amount of fear about something, I shouldn’t do it. I was treading water in the shallow end of the pool, waiting to not feel any fear about taking risks. But, of course, that was simply never going to happen.
It can be scary to allow yourself to dream big, to be vulnerable in relationships, to try new ways of communicating…but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it. I encourage some risk-taking because that is how we get to know how beautifully resilient we really are. Each of us is so much stronger than we think.
What has been your biggest struggle?
Ummm, please see above. A lot of things in life are a struggle when you don’t really, truly and deeply believe in yourself. When lack of love for yourself is your default mode, you will struggle with almost every aspect of your life (and I did). I’ve worked hard to get to a place where my default mode is loving and trusting myself. I gotta say, it’s a great place to be!
How do you “reset”?
I’m an extrovert, so spending time with friends and loved ones fills me up and is very important to me. But, the deeper I go in my journey of growth and loving myself, I’ve also really come to love my alone time. I try to get out of town with my old pup, Bandit, at least three times a year for little weekend getaways. Nothing fancy. Just a little cabin in the Texas Hill Country or something like that. These weekends have become incredibly important and meaningful to me.
I also try to take occasional breaks from my phone and social media. Whew, there is just so much coming at us these days! I think it’s important to unplug.
What makes you smile?
Seeing my dog, Bandit, running and jumping at the dog park makes me smile. The sheer bliss he experiences from doing something so simple is fun to witness. My mom makes me smile; I won the mom lottery. And, it may sound cliche’, but getting up every day knowing that I get to do what I love puts a big grin on my face!
Amanda is a trained Life Coach and holds a Masters Degree in Counseling. As a recovering risk avoiding scaredy-cat, she is passionate about empowering women to live and love boldly. Amanda will be joining Reset Retreat in Belize as life coach in February 2016. To learn more about Amanda, visit her life coaching website, her amazing blog, or catch up with her on Facebook.