What I’ve Learned from Six Months of Coaching

Six months ago I began accepting coaching clients beyond my one initial client. I had this plan that after six months I’d collect a bunch of testimonials, write about coaching, and sign up a new batch of people. But the truth is that my schedule is pretty full, so I’m not really trying to sign up new people. The coaching process has been much more interesting and lesson-filled than expected, though, so I still have a lot to share about it.

I have around twenty people that I coach now. What’s surprising to me is how much I like all of them. I guess it makes sense that the people who would sign up would be those with whom I had a lot in common. Most of them are working on projects or life changes that are exciting to me, so every month when we have our call I really enjoy hearing about their challenges and successes.

My initial worry was that these calls would be draining, but it turns out that most of the time I find them energizing because I’ve spent an hour or so talking about exciting stuff. Sometimes the initial calls are draining because I put a lot of pressure on myself to understand the person and find some immediate action steps they can take that well result in real progress, but the ongoing ones are really enjoyable for me.

The only parts I didn’t like about coaching were scheduling and keeping track of payments, so I made a fully automated system that shows my schedule, takes bookings, checks for payments, sends reminders, and adds appointments to my personal calendar. All I have to do is check my phone and show up for the call. Removing the administrative parts of the business allows me to focus all of my energy on my clients and eliminates almost all of the stress.

It’s also been very interesting for me to get to know my readers better. Most clients are long-time readers, so it’s been a good opportunity for me to see who reads my blog, and to understand their strengths and weaknesses. Many people have said that my blog has improved over the last six months, and I think it’s entirely because I better understand my readers. I enjoy getting to work on specific problems that are too unique to warrant a blog post, but still very interesting.

The topics people want to work on range pretty widely, but it’s been very interesting for me to see patterns where they exist. I didn’t expect this, but a big way I help people is by getting an overview on their life and helping them prioritize things. A lot of people have insecurities I didn’t expect, sometimes even around their strengths. Lots of people want help choosing habits and staying accountable to them, and that’s been something that has yielded really good results. I’ve helped a ton of people improve their social circles.

It’s also been interesting for me to make more money, and that’s allowed me to do some really cool things. My cousin and her boyfriend were coming to Budapest a day after I left, but I bought a new plane ticket so that I could spend some time with them. Traveling with my family is a major priority for me, but I probably wouldn’t have done that if it wasn’t for coaching income. It feels good making a living in a very authentic way, getting to directly help my most dedicated readers one-on-one. At the same time I generally have a waiting list and make enough money to cover my low expenses from other things, so I don’t mind turning people down or suggesting they find someone different if I don’t think I’ll be able to make a big impact for them.

Last, it’s made me really proud to see some of my clients make huge changes. I’ve had people 2-4x their output (research papers, writing, etc), go nomad or build a side business, drastically increase their happiness, expand their social circle, multiply their income, and start exciting new projects. Obviously the hard work they put into these things is 90%+ of what it takes to get there, but it makes me feel really good to know that an hour of my month can directly contribute to these things. My months feel very full of successes because I get to share in theirs.

Once in a while I have to change my plans due to a coaching session or I wish I had a free day to work on a project, but overall coaching has been a huge net positive in my life. A huge thank you is due to my amazing clients, and also to all of my readers who make this blog possible. It’s a real joy to be able to make a living doing what I’m best at and love.

I may open up a spot or two in the next month or so, so you can email me if you want to be on the waiting list (more info here). I believe that I’ve emailed everyone who was on the waiting list at this point, so if you’re still waiting and haven’t heard from me, please send an email.

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Photo is my tea set up when I make matcha + houjicha.

I’d really like to get in touch with United employees, particularly flight attendants. Would also be interested in Delta or American. If you can connect me, please email my name at my name dot com.

Wednesday post! When was the last time I posted so early in the week?

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