Coach In The Spotlight – Jennie Lockley
What brought you to coaching?
I have been a registered nurse since 1980, a long time. I do a job that is full on and very intense, all the time. It is immensely rewarding but exhausting. I have always felt a passion for encouraging and building confidence in people. There are so many people out there who have no idea how strong and resourceful they can be, they lack confidence, have low self esteem. Often they have had the stuffing knocked out of them by life events and people’s careless comments. My work as a nurse can satisfy this to some extent but I am bound by time and budget restrictions. I am trained in bereavement support, I am a lay visitor in my local hospital through their chaplaincy. This is all very rewarding but something I do voluntarily in my own free time. Even more exhaustion, along with the knowledge that I am doing something useful.
I wanted to do something I was passionate about, helping people develop and realise their potential, to ‘Create balance and success in their lives’.
I wasn’t a very good role model, tired out and depressed. I needed to think deeply about my future. I have a friend who suggested NLP and another friend who had just qualified as a life coach, he was offering a free taster coaching session. I took him up on his offer and asked him about NLP. He coached me and lent me a couple of books; ‘Time to think’ by Nancy Klein and ‘Coaching Within NLP’, O’Conner and Larges. It was after this I realised NLP wasn’t what I was after but personal coaching, life coaching was. This would be the best way for me to begin.
He recommended TCA as he had undertaken his training there. I applied for and did the certificate days, which was very good, I felt enlivened and knew this was a way forward for me.
What were your original thoughts for applying the coaching?
My main thought was to be able to help people in a way that empowered them to be self aware and confident in themselves. To learn how to do this effectively and ultimately to earn a living from it. I find it energising, I am buzzing after a session of coaching, I am exhausted after a shift nursing.
What did you find most interesting to learn?
For me it was very interesting to learn about myself, and how effective I can be as a coach. I have confidence now in my ability to empower people to become more confident in their own abilities.
What was the most rewarding part of the training/journey?
My first testimonial, it made me cry! It said how much I had helped this client and much more. I felt very humble and privileged to have been part of his journey in life. Other people have said how I inspire trust, how welcoming and friendly I am, non judgemental and much more.
Which bits did you enjoy the most?
I enjoyed the practice sessions with my clients. I enjoyed meeting fellow coaches at accelerator days and developing good long lasting friendships.
How did the qualification slot in with your current life?
It has made me more effective as a nurse, I am able to listen more effectively. My communication skills have improved, my relationships have improved too.
What else did you have to consider whilst qualifying?
I had a grand plan, all worked out week by week and a date to finish the course. This is where I learned to be flexible and to go with the flow a bit. Life has a way of disrupting things. I qualified a year later than I originally planned. I have suffered with depression for much of my adult life and when I started my course I was in a really good place psychologically. This gradually changed to a major depression that has taken many, many months of working through. I have had lots of things going on which individually are manageable, skin cancer, a friend with a terminal illness, family illnesses, and more. Depression is something that does not necessarily need a focus though, it crept up on me to the point that one shift at work I broke down and sobbed my heart out.
6 months later I was able to return to my work as a nurse with lots of support from friends and colleagues. I had also qualified as a coach which made two achievements to be proud of. Life is improving and my work coaching makes me feel complete. (I am optimistic by nature even though I suffer with a depressive illness).
Where are you now? How are you using your coaching skills?
I use my coaching skills every day in my general day to day life. I have a client who stayed with me after I finished my course and is my first paying client. I am setting up my business and learning about marketing myself (this is alien to me). I will get better with practice.
What is your coaching niche and why did you choose it?
My niche is developing into confidence building and finding a way forward when life gets too stressful, either through work worries or mid life changes in direction, sudden changes such as a relationship finishing. I work well with people who suffer silently with depressive illnesses. I also am coaching people starting a new career as self employed individuals, this applies to me too.
What is the best thing that could happen to your coaching business in the next 2 years?
That my coaching business takes off and I can become self employed again. I will develop this niche and make my business known to a wider circle of clients. I will then make this my main income source. I want to link with someone who has a holistic approach to life who can compliment what I do with other aspects of being ‘whole’.
What is your favourite coaching question?
When a client goes off track a little, to bring them back, I ask how will this move you closer to your goal?
What do you enjoy most about being a coach?
The buzz I get when I’m coaching.