2014 was a year for self-discovery and acceptance. 2015 is going to be my year for growth and excellence. Looking back on what I’ve learned and looking forward to what I want, I have a clear plan. Now it’s just about creating the right goals and following through.
By now you all have a sense of the changes and transitions that came in 2014. There were certainly many growing pains in this process and one of the biggest discoveries I made over the course of the last 15 months was that building a coaching practice is NOTHING like building a therapy practice. For one, I lacked an incredible amount of knowledge about how to design and market coaching services. Secondly, I was for the first time confronted with having to help others understand my value to them and my purpose- something that is quite clear to anyone who is in need of a psychologist. What I did to bridge the gap in each of those areas was hire coaches. It was both the biggest expense (worth every hard earned cent) and the smartest move I made in 2014. Not only did they help me better define what I was expecting from my professional metamorphosis, but they helped me identify and follow through on relevant goals and tasks.
Just like many of the people I work with, when I first decided to pursue coaching my approach was dream but not plan driven, so it was too general, vague and unfocused – despite my belief that the goals I was setting were clear and pointed. I will not be repeating the same mistake in 2015. I will not waste precious time (my most important commodity) following goals that in the end will not amount to much. If I were starting this process from scratch I would pull out the Focus Map and get a good sense of what I want. I would probably change the vignette a bit to reflect only professional values, and then use the insights from there to identify larger goals. As it stands, both thanks to my work with the Focus Map over a year ago and thanks to my coaches I know exactly what my goal for 2015 is. Not only that, but I have already gone through the work of operationalizing that goal and I have identified my first quarter objective. Now it’s simply a question of outlining the tasks that will get me there and making sure I don’t let my assumptions and emotions stand in the way of success.
I know what my cognitive and emotional barriers are. I know what kind of thoughts and feelings could hold me back. I’ll share one with you – fear! Fear of trying and failing, it is so common and can act either as an amazing motivator or shackle you in place. I have the tools to identify and circumvent these roadblocks, they are the same tools I share with my clients, but it doesn’t make them any less intimidating. Each step of the way I am aware that there will be both situational and personal circumstances that make my progress either easier or slower; but there will be no stopping me. As I have been thinking about this journey and the amount of information I had to acquire both as a psychologist and as a coach to get where I am I have been thinking about you: you the reader, you the client, you my friends. I have been thinking about ways in which I could condense and share this knowledge, so that your journey is slightly smoother and hopefully shorter than mine. After all, Life in Focus is the product of my desire to change and the realization that there are so many other people out there just like me for whom content is not enough; people who want a life of excellence, fulfillment and growth.
I am really looking forward to 2015, because these goals – not resolutions – that I am making are things I want with every fiber of my mind and my heart. I am a little scared to want something so much, but mostly I am excited in a way I have not been for years. I look forward to sharing this journey with you as the year progresses and hope to hear about your goals, your journey, your “aha!” moments.
Alessandra Wall, Ph.D.
P.S. Ready to chase a dream, reach a goal, make a plan?
- Want some help setting some quarterly objectives and figuring out how to navigate around your roadblocks?
- Could you use some professional perspective and a bit of help staying accountable and on track?
- How about some expert knowledge on the psychology of change and how to make it work for you? I thought so.
Well, there are many ways I can help – but if right now you want a way of getting started without having to pay the price for individual coaching, you should sign up for the “My Life In Focus” coaching program. It starts Monday January 5th, 2015, but sign up are right now and there are only 20 spots in the program, so don’t miss out. Find out more…