What Health Coaching Is
Health coaching is a practice that helps establish the behavior and lifestyle changes that help someone meet their unique and individualized health goals. It is the process of breaking larger goals into smaller, actionable steps that build both success and confidence. It can be difficult to articulate just how effective and enlightening health coaching can be. It can be even more difficult to fully convey exactly what these sessions look like in practice. Once you’ve been through it though, it becomes clear--you can feel its significance. So, I thought the best way for me to demonstrate this was by letting my clients and their experiences speak for themselves . . .
Walking into my first session with Emily, I knew very little about what exactly to expect. However, being able to just begin speaking from an honest place with no hard destination in mind allowed me to express some deep-seated honesty that may have been just waiting for its moment to emerge.
As I sat with Emily, her questions thoughtfully guided me to make some very wonderful decisions for myself about my own life (in my relationships, healthcare, tendencies, habits, desires, stress triggers, all the way to my eating preferences). Working with a health coach provides a unique opportunity to say them aloud in a non-judgmental space that exists solely for the purpose of creating the chance to build a constructive path forward.
Health coaching seems to be the missing piece of the puzzle in my journey, and I would recommend it to just about everyone. Walking out of my sessions, I am confident in the next steps I am taking in my life empowered by clarity as to why. I am infinitely grateful for the chance to work with an individual I have admired since the day I met her. Coming by a human as generous, gracious, open-hearted, curious, and dedicated as Coach Emily is an amazing occurrence.
I recently found myself in a downward spiral of unhealthy patterns of thoughts, feelings and behavior. I needed support. Starting with the first session with Emily, I felt comfortable, connected, heard and profoundly understood. Through thoughtful, non-judgmental, and gentle questions and intentional reflective listening, Emily reminded me of what inherent values I hold sacred and she helped me become aware of and set goals in alignment with those values.
She has an intuitive ability to ask a question, that I needed to ask myself, at exactly the time I needed it. And all done with non-intimidating conversation. With these thought provoking questions, she “held up the mirror” and helped me unearth limiting beliefs behind many of my unhealthy behavioral patterns. She empowered me to trust myself to work towards what my ideal day and life would look like.
Over my time working with Emily, with her enthusiastic and gentle guidance, I set attainable and sustainable goals, routines and rituals in mindfulness, meditation, fitness, my relationship with food and consistent self care. And I feel empowered to continue on this health filled journey.
To be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure what health coaching was when I signed up for a session with Emily, but afterwards I felt sure that this was the missing piece in my quest to balance an active lifestyle with a healthy and positive mindset. In speaking with Emily, I was able to identify some negative thought patterns and behaviors that had been hindering my progress and causing anxiety and stress around my workouts and meals. After identifying the issues I was having, I was able to begin reformatting my approach in a way that honored my fitness goals without sacrificing my mental well-being.
Emily provided a non-judgmental space to discuss both my goals and my obstacles, and the plan I came up with to achieve a better balance is effective, yet easy to work into my daily routine. No matter what your personal goals might be, I would highly recommend working with her and seeing how health coaching can give you the tools to feel your best both physically and mentally!
The cool thing about working with Emily is that when I started, I wasn't necessarily even sure what my health goals were. Through the health coaching process, Emily was able to help me identify my goals, why I really wanted to reach them, and create smaller, weekly goals between meetings.
We started with the most obvious for me – I want to run faster. “How would running faster make you feel?” Emily asked. We dug into the root of the problem - “well, I hate when the group runs ahead of me at run club.” Nailed it – it's not so much about running faster, as it is about feeling included. Then, health coaching was able to veer into less obvious problems: maintaining my healthy habits while traveling for work, working around a new job that constantly has food around the office, trying new fitness classes, and spending more time outside.
Chatting with Emily was always so easy and fluid. Long-term goals that seemed big and scary turned out to not be so hard after breaking them down. I always came away from each meeting with new things to try, I am better at asking myself the right questions, and my goals are much more clear than when I started. I am feeling less stuck now and I can already see the progress I've made. I would recommend Emily as a health coach to anyone.
I recently participated in a health coaching session with Emily. I admit now that I didn’t really know what I was getting into. I assumed I had a pretty good handle on living a healthy lifestyle so I wasn’t sure that I “needed this”. But I was curious, so I signed up. I was able to discover one area of significant weakness that needed my attention. The last few weeks as I have worked to address this area of weakness I have continued to discover more about myself.
The best way to summarize this Health Coaching process is that through this conversation with Emily, I was able to discover areas in my life that could be negatively impacting my health. This was not a lecture where Emily gave me a long “to do list,” it was a conversation where with the right questions, I was able to discover one thing to work on which was meaningful and important for me specifically.
Emily is supportive and non-judgmental. I would highly recommend this experience to others seeking to maximize their health.
Throughout my sessions with clients, it has become clear to me that we tend to struggle, collectively, with a few things in particular: feeling as though we deserve to take genuine care of ourselves, giving ourselves permission to take the time and space for that care, and stepping out of our own way to actually achieve the state of wellness we say that we want. When I am coaching, I am able to witness mindsets shifting, resistance and judgment shaking off, and change truly setting in. It is a joy to be a part of.
The more I practice health coaching, the more understanding I feel. The more patient I feel. The more humble I feel. The more grateful I feel. Understanding and patience towards the messiness of life--I see how we are all in it together. Humble and grateful to be a trusted enough source to share and support this part of your lives and journeys.