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Life coach?

suesam

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Has anyone ever used a life coach and did it help you? I think I need one. I am 43 and just do not know what I want to do with my life for the next 24 years, assuming I will have to work to for health insurance, until I can get medicare.

I just want to be one of those people who love their jobs most of the time.Is that so much to ask? At this point I am pretty disillusioned with my job and need a change. I have no idea what to do!!!

Thanks!

Sue
 

ricoba

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Why pay someone to help you out? Simply post your questions here on TUG and you will literally get lots of lots of FREE and often very very good advice. :)
 

suesam

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You are so right!! I just think I would bore you all to tears with all of my whining about my job and how I do not know what to do with my life! I almost bore myself!!!

Basically I am a social worker sick of dealing with corporate greed. There are no other jobs in my rural, depressed area and we have to live here because of my husbands great job. I have a great husband and children who are fine, so far. I really should not be feeling so sorry for myself. I am one of those people who NEED to work mentally... preferably part time. I love and have a talent for working with older adults and their families. I also LOVE to travel, which explains my TUG addiction. My neck is absolutely killing me due to stress.

So maybe I need a therapist AND a life coach?

Sue
 

ricoba

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You are so right!! I just think I would bore you all to tears with all of my whining about my job and how I do not know what to do with my life! I almost bore myself!!!

Basically I am a social worker sick of dealing with corporate greed. There are no other jobs in my rural, depressed area and we have to live here because of my husbands great job. I have a great husband and children who are fine, so far. I really should not be feeling so sorry for myself. I am one of those people who NEED to work mentally... preferably part time. I love and have a talent for working with older adults and their families. I also LOVE to travel, which explains my TUG addiction. My neck is absolutely killing me due to stress.

So maybe I need a therapist AND a life coach?

Sue
Have you considered further education as a way out or a way up?

I am 53 and became functionally unemployed/underemployed in 2004, when the organization, I was working for closed its doors. I have done a few odd jobs, but have always preferred professional/education related jobs, so I did quite a bit of tutoring and after school work for a few years. Then this past year, I got "kicked in the head" again, by a less than stellar organization, so I finally enrolled in a distance learning degree program, which will hopefully lead me to a Doctorate in Education. It took me way too many kicks while I was down to realize I needed to make some improvements.

In my online classes I am normally the old guy in class, but I have realized that my grades are as good or better than some of the other students. The work has been fun and beneficial.

I realize that it will take a couple of years to get what I want, but I know by God's grace I can make it.

As an older/mature student, I have had to re-evaluate my own goals,(from being an in class educator) and have realized that I am now looking at being a professor at a community college, an adjunct professor somewhere, or a professor working with students just like me in an online environment.

It sounds like from what you have said that a change like education, may give you a new perspective and get you thinking in a new direction, as it did me.

Good luck and don't worry about whining here on TUG, I have seen a lot more frivolous post (some of them are mine!) than yours here. I think this is a good resource place to run ideas by people. It's a very open and caring community. :)
 

pjrose

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Hi Sue,

I met a Life Coach at the Islander this summer! We didn't talk about her profession, but I did notice that on her card. You have my email, so let me know if you want her info.

You are in a stressful field - it may not sound like it to those unfamiliar with it, but you have the weight of dozens - maybe hundreds - of other people's problems! You also have the frustration of dealing with a system (or systems) in which you simply can't help them all, can't do enough, constantly are blocked in your attempts to help or to find help, and of course you are often dealing with people who need help but don't want it, don't follow through, and may otherwise be beyond help. All that frustration! I couldn't do it.

You are a good writer and apparently love to write.....what about going in that direction? Get the Writer's Digest or google jobs for writers.

You like to communicate - teaching? Certainly that's stressful too - but maybe at the nursery school or kindergarten level when they're so cute?

As far as the stress goes, have you seen your Dr. and considered meds? That made a HUGE difference for me.

PJ
 

Rose Pink

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.... I love and have a talent for working with older adults and their families.
Sue
Does the community where you live have a senior citizens program? With your social work skills, you may find a place with the county aging services. You could start by volunteering to see if you like it. You could also contact AARP to see if they have any suggestions for working with older adults in your community.

I hear you about corporate greed. I no longer work in health care. It was making me sick!
 

lprstn

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I can answer the what to do with the rest of your life questions..for free...

I decided long ago (7 years :D ) when my sister-in-law (32 yrs died of brain cancer), cousin-in-law (34yrs died of cancer), uncle (46yrs died of brain cancer) left this earth that I need to rethink my life. At that moment I STOPPED looking at a JOB for my happiness...and saw my job as an opportunity to make the $$ I needed to Live the life I wanted after work. Sooo...I now have 3 jobs (4 if you count being a mom) :eek: , because I said ..."Gee when I retire...I want to teach", so I got a job teaching part-time (online and in person 1 day a week), then I said..."Gee, I want to start my own travel business" ... so I started a part-time business planning and selling small trips to friends and family - of which we get to go on with a lot of them. Then I said, "Gee, I would love to travel more..." and I used all of this part-time income to finance my monthly trips of at least one 4-day weekend, and make it so that we travel every holiday or day off during the year that we can.

So the morale of my story is....DON'T LET YOUR JOB define YOU or the life you LIVE when you leave work. DON'T LET the people you work with bring you down...REALIZE that YOU decide how people or a situation EFFECTS you. AND....live your bucket list...write down all the things you want to do if you retired and $$ was not an issue, and TRY to work them into your life today. That way the job you are working, is just a means to start to live the life you have yet to discover for yourself...and who ever said you needed to have the answers today...take your time and plan your adventure.

Who made the rule that you can only have 1 career your whole life, who made it so we couldn't change our minds? No one, Live your life saving each experience as an adventure to discovering yourself.

When I changed my outlook on what I do at work from my purpose in life, to a means to LIVE my life, I am a lot happier with all the things I do, even the things I did at work and at home that I felt were previously making me unhappy.

That's my soapbox and now I am getting down from it.

Oh, side note...while vacationing in Hawaii..I met 2 ladies that were sisters. They worked 2 jobs a piece in Texas (where they were from originally) for 8 months out of each year, then they took their savings and stayed in a trailer in Hawaii for 4 months out of the year, working 1 job while there. They figured that their dream was always to live in Hawaii, and they worked ANY job that would allow them to do so for as long as they were able to. They really got me to thinking....
 
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bookworm

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Personally, I think its just super that you want to work in a way that is more meaningful. My husband is working through that question now too (almost exactly your age in fact!) I'm sure there won't be any easy answers, but re-evaluating your situation and considering something new is really courageous and not out of the ordinary. In fact, studies are showing that most of us will change careers along the way more than once.

I am not a life coach but I do a lot of vocational discernment with university students and am about to finish a PhD with a dissertation related to mentoring. My best sense of how people succeed in periods of discernment is to do a few things: (1) determine what your hearts beat for - what do you love? What gives you energy rather than draining your energy? What parts of your current job give you life? Where is the passion? It sounds like you might have some good ideas already. (2) What are the needs around you - the kinds of needs that you are gifted to fill? Are there needs in your community related to families and the elderly? Is there someone who knows your community well that could help you see more clearly what the needs are?

Basically, your calling is the place where your deep gladness and world's deep hunger meet (Frederick Beuckner). Sometimes these questions are answered by staying in the same workplace but making some changes, taking better care of yourself, going for therapy, etc. Other times something more drastic may be needed. Along the way a life coach could be a good idea, as well as a good friend who will listen well and ask questions so you can hear yourself get the ideas out.
Now of course there are practical issues to deal with like location, education, etc., but once you start with the first part, it is a little easier to work at the practical part.

By the way - I think the previous comment is so right that sometimes it isn't a job that is your true vocation. However, it sure is nice when these two can come together as they do for many.

Just my two cents - hope you don't mind. Best wishes on your planning.
 
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Poobah

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Life Coaches

All of the previous posts are right on. My BIL is a Life Coach and provides seminars and training for Life Coaches. I am not involved with his business nor have I ever had a Life Coach.

It is my understanding that, at the bottom line, the idea of a Life Coach is to help you sort out what you want to do, develop goals and a plan. The Life Coach then provides the accountability to help you execute your plan.

IMHO, the accountability is the key thing. It is very easy to put things off, especially, if no one is going to ask you if you did what you said you were going to do. And then ask you "why not?"

I use a trainer at my health club. Not because I don't know what I should be doing, but he provides the structure. I need the structure and the feeling that what I am doing on the weight machines and the elliptical has a direction and goal. When I have my body fat/weight/strength tested that is the accountability.:eek:

For some people something like a Life Coach helps people get off dead center.

JMHO,

Paul
 

suesam

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This is why I love Tug. I got teary just reading your kind responses. What a wonderful community.

My issues are actually even more complex, which is why I probably need a life coach AND a therapist..... I live in rural Iowa. From as far back as I remember I wanted to escape. Swore I would never live here, BORING.
Went to University of Iowa, loved it, partially because of the diversity and interesting people. THEN I fall head over heels in love with my husband, who farmed at that time.I graduate from college, we get married, I think I can stand the boredom of rural Iowa because of my wonderful husband. Twenty years later, I still am bored to tears in rural Iowa, but continue to adore my husband and children. I live 7 miles from where I was raised. I am soooo different from my friends. They are content to live in this area and raise their kids, go to their school sporting events 4 nights a week, and go on a vacation once a year, maybe. They have no curiousity about the world around them and are very CONTENT.I wish I could have that but it is not possible. School sporting events bore me to tears and I try to think of any way possible I can get out of them.I have always thought school sports were to be about exercise and fun, which is what I preached to my children, which probably explains why they are not competive in sports and do not get to play much as JV or varsity players. WRONG. Small town politics seem so menial to me. I have no patience with any of it. I live 20 miles from everywhere. Not much interesting within 60.

I crave adventure. I crave people who are different than me. I really want to know what is out there in the world. I am so interested in other people and their lives.... which is why I love working with the elderly, I love to listen to their stories... they truly fascinate me. I suppose that is why the career thing is important to me because my environment is so darned boring. All of this also explains my obsession with traveling which my parents, friends and co-workers think is ridiculous because of the expense. This is rural CONSERVATIVE Iowa. I should NOT be spending money on a vacation. But you see a vacation is much more than relaxing to me, it is about the adventure. I am the person at the pool asking you where you live and wanting to hear all about your life. I am very curious.

So... we can't move financially. We actually talked to an attorney about all of this a few weeks back. My husband now has another full time job, which is a great job, but the farm is still very lucrative and we have the golden hand cuff problem. Part of this is excacerbated because one son is going to college and the other will be going in a couple of years. We have to live here, at least we can't figure a way out.....

My husband is a lot like me but mellow. He loves to travel, he is a sagittarius as am I. We are supposed to be traveling the world together according to astrology! He does not feel this constant craving like I do.... as I said he is mellow. But.... he is my best traveling partner and would go with me to the ends of the earth.

Sometimes I feel like I am suffocating here I am so bored, then throw in a job where your corporation does not share your ethics and that is how I came to think I need a life coach, but reading this post I am writing perhaps a therapist is more necessary!

But all of this makes me feel like a huge whiner.I really feel like I must be spoiled rotten or something. I have it all. I am healthy, we are financially ok. My kids and husband are great and healthy. So why do I sit at my computer writing this and feel like crying? Why am I such a whiner?????

Hey, thanks for the therapy guys!! Hopefully you do all not think I am truly nuts! I have a feeling you won't. I think you probably understand me more than my friends who I have known all my life.
Sue
 
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Rose Pink

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Sue, seriously consider getting a full medical check-up as well as a mental health work-up. You sound depressed. Depression can manifest as boredom. You may be seeking "adventure" because your brain likes the dopamine, etc high. I get it from junk food. Cognitive therapy coupled with medication can work wonders. Learn the skills with cognitive therapy and you may not need to remain on meds.

Look for the adventure in your own back yard as it is there. Raising children can be the greatest adventure of them all. If you aren't happy at home, you aren't going to be happy anywhere. Traveling will give you a temporary high but I suspect you'd eventually fall back into your current state of mind no matter where you were. When the novelty of the new place wore off, and the daily grind took over, you'd get unsettled again, as your brain would begin seeking ways to spike its neural chemistry.

I suspect that the people who just love their jobs, would love just about any job. I don't think it is necessarily the job, but the attitude they take to it. That said, some environments can wear down even the most resilient person and I don't mean to imply that environment has nothing at all to do with how you feel. As I said before, I left health care because I felt it had become dirty and I could not maintain my integrity doing what the administrators wanted. It was just plain wrong.

If you don't have to work, quit. Volunteer, take community ed classes or classes at the rec center. Maybe some college classes. Redecorate a room in wild, vivid colors.

Ask what it is about yourself (vs your environment) that you want to change.
 

suesam

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RosePink,
Thanks for that caring response. However, as a social worker I am very familiar with depression, medication for depression, etc. That is not my answer and I know it. Possibly living here depresses me but depression is not cause, it is probably the effect! I have no intentions of taking medications to solve this problem and believe you me I am pro psychotropics when appropriate. As I said as a teenager I knew that my desired horizons were wider than Iowa. I laugh when you say join a rec center. We have no rec center within 40 miles. This is very rural america.We do have nursing homes, etc but culture is very, very limited outside of the local high school. My own sisters feel sorry for me living here and would NEVER live here.

Of course parenting is an adventure, that is probably why this has not bothered me that much until now. My kids needed me and I was wrapped up in them. They still need me, but not all time consuming. One is in college and thinks I call way too much. I raised them to be independent and they are showing me they can be.

Actually this is probably a mid life crisis!!!! My kids no longer need my constant attention so now I need to figure out what I am going to do with my life. Think buying a convertible would help?

Sue
 

Blue Skies

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I don't have any advice about your future, except to say I understand how you feel. We live in a small city (pop. 25,0000) in southern Minnesota, surrounded by corn and soybean fields, and turkey, pork and beef livestock farms. We have the basic minimum of entertainment and shopping activities, and are a one-hour drive from the Minneapolis-St Paul metro area.

Life can be pretty darn boring living in a small town. Many of our young people move away to the Twin Cities for that reason.

Now that our last child is in college, we have been taking more trips as a couple, which has been nice. But as I watch my retired parents struggle with rising costs (especially health care!), I wonder if we should be saving every spare cent for our retirement years?

I don't know that life would be any better (or worse) living somewhere else, but I just wanted to let you know that you aren't alone in your feelings.

Maybe it's time to take a trip and escape the normal routine, a simple weekend away can do wonders for the psyche.
 

Rose Pink

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suesam;603122Actually this is probably a mid life crisis!!!! ? Sue[/quote said:
I was going to say that, but refrained. You are of the age . . . . ;)

When I was about your age and very angry about my life, I sat down and wrote a list of what I wanted to be--not what I wanted to do. On the list were such things as grace, integrity, concentricity. Then a strange thing popped onto the page--aikido. That was something to do. It was a challenge--they say it brings out the dyslexia in everyone. I learned so much about myself and life. But I had a very sensitive sensei.

If this is a mid-life crisis, you can be sure other women in your surroundings are feeling it, too. They may not express it but I'm pretty sure there are some who, although previously satisfied, are now asking, "what next? This isn't what I expected."

Maybe you could start a ladies group. You could talk about travel. You could talk about preparing to age actively, healthfully. You could talk about any of a number of things that interest you. I think if you put your feelers out that there will be a few women who will respond. Give them a chance.
 

bookworm

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I don't know if you like to read but there are many interesting books on the topic of midlife crises including "The Breaking Point" by Sue Shellenbarger.

Like others, I am sympathetic to your situation. I, too, grew up on a farm (in southern Manitoba - very rural, and cold too!). I had the opportunity to stay with the expanding family business and it would have been very lucrative. My family members were more than happy to chose this. However, my heart was not in hanging with cattle and potatoes, I like people better. We have been to interesting places ever since but it did mean taking a risk (Aha! Exactly what mid-life folks do well!). Of course, everyone needs to discern the timing and particular circumstances very carefully before making any changes.

It doesn't sound like you are nuts. It sounds like its time to evaluate. Everyone can probably benefit from therapy at one time or another. I don't think a mid-life crisis is such a bad thing if you take it seriously and act wisely. It can change the course of your life in a positive way.
 

suesam

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I am so glad there are a couple others out there who understand about the rural, boring thing. The town closest to me has about 800, maybe, people and the CITY I work in has about 12,000. Our part of the state is very depressed and has been for years. This depressed housing market is nothing new for our area. We have a huge elderly population and are definitely not forward thinking. Very, very Catholic and very very conservative. I guarantee my bank is not in trouble due to bad loans! So there are good things about being conservative!

Writing and reading has really helped this morning. I feel better.
lprstn, I like the way you think! As well as the two women you met who live in Hawaii for several months of the year. Awesome.
Something kind of amusing, there is a book club I could belong to, but my mother in law is in it and there is no way I am going to be in the same book club as she is!! I can't see spilling all of my personal views in her presence. That is how small of a community I live in.

Ok. I will try to stop whining. I am going to get the two books recommended. Thanks for the recommendations.
I think I am going to continue this life coach research as well......

Sue
 

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I like the idea of a career change. Did it myself after many frustrating years in social work and never looked back. You might add to your list of books: What Color Is Your Parachute? I have not looked at it in years, but thought is was pretty helpful back then, especially if you pursue the idea of a career change.

Diane
 
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lprstn

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I still am bored to tears in rural Iowa, but continue to adore my husband and children. I live 7 miles from where I was raised. I am soooo different from my friends.
I crave adventure. I crave people who are different than me. I really want to know what is out there in the world.

All of this also explains my obsession with traveling which my parents, friends and co-workers think is ridiculous because of the expense.

So... we can't move financially. We actually talked to an attorney about all of this a few weeks back.

Part of this is excacerbated because one son is going to college and the other will be going in a couple of years. We have to live here, at least we can't figure a way out.....

But.... he is my best traveling partner and would go with me to the ends of the earth.

Why am I such a whiner?????
Sue
Ok, WHY can't you move? Or at least take a job that will allow you to travel more?

I think you have grown a little comfortable, and a bit afraid to take some risk. My mother in law moves every 3 years....

I don't move because I really love where I live, but I LEAVE here every chance I get (at least 1 time a month)... for 4 day getaways.

With the type of work you do, you could actually live anywhere and be profitable...

So some options could be;

Find a job that you can travel and do.
Find a job that will ALLOW you to TRAVEL MORE.

You and your DH get selfish, save for 1 year for a 1 month vacation to explore the world.....

Also, there are lots of places that you can work.

As far as your kids going to college, they can foot some of the bill on their own...I went to college without my parents help and took out student loans and worked...amazingly I have 2 degrees without my parents help...so does my DH....

So, having a life coach wouldn't be bad...you need someone to help you think outside of the box that you have painted yourself in...and teach you how to be creative and invent opportunities for you to live in the way that you desire.

Some things to consider;

Open your own business
- Home health care aids (you make the appointments and send others on the jobs)....
- You build, operate, and employ staff to run a nursing home or 2 which would allow you some freedom for long travel

Plan for an adventure
- Take a 2nd job to just save for your 1 - 3 month adventure ... DH can go with you some of that time and you can explore at other times on your own (if you take a cruise (like a 3 week cruise) you can pay on it up to 2 years in advance...)

Just some ideas to help you think outside of the box...
 

vacationhopeful

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I don't think you are any more "nuts" than the average teenager. Your hormones are different and you have fewer demands on your time as your kids leave the house. The average midlife changes and crisis. But ...

Do you think you might be a little Attention Deficient Disorder? I can't sit thru any type of kid's sports; paperwork is done when I am very tired; I have many interests and hobbies. I am engaging other people for their life stories. It might explain your lifelong "unsettleness" and why travelling is so wonderful ... you are actually processing so much info, this is a normal activity level for you. You have a high level of adventure -not thrill seeking, but more than driving down a road w/o a map. As a kid, I was an itch into everything. I did 3 colleges, 2 different majors and a minor in 3 1/2 years while working 20+ hours a week.

I changed careers in my mid-30's - office, computer systems analyst to construction gal. I was dying everyday I went into the office - lack of sunlight, fresh air and sitting still all day (I would roam the hallways). I have guys who work for me fulltime, multiple projects happening all the time, and work 12+ hour days. And I almost 25 years older and pass for 45. There are days I do a laborer's job in the morning, while plotting the paperwork I can do in the afternoon (as I know I will be tired enough to sit still).

Just a thought...
 

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What is your passion? How can you achieve it within the confines of your current existence? Just be careful of "the grass is alwasy greener" syndrome, although being a social worker that is not likely to afflict you!
 

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Oh my goodness, this is a fabulous thread!! Sue, I am sorry you are feeling this way. Boy, have I felt that way myself. But mine was true depression. Like Lprstn, I experienced a string of losses that were unbelievably profound in four years (brother, Mother-in-law,Mom, Grandma, Grandpa, Sister-in-law). All of these people were integral to my life either for me, my husband or my kids. I believe the worst, though, was seeing my mother lose my brother. He was her oldest child and I felt so helpless as I watched her suffer with this loss. She died 10 months later, I believe, of a broken heart. She was diabetic but there was no indication clinically that things were not going well. Her organs just shut down. I sat with her for 3 days until she died. I couldn't sleep or eat - and it changed me. For two years, I struggled to regain my footing in life. I was exhausted all the time and the winters, especially, were bad. I just didn't see the point in anything. When things would get a little better, someone else I loved would die. What a terrible time. :(

My point in telling you this, is not to whine, but to illustrate the point that lprstn was making. I really do not worry about much anymore. For example, my husband was laid off six months ago and the country is in the midst of this huge financial crisis so jobs are quite scarce, but I've hardly worried at all. After all, no one is going to die. No one is sick etc etc etc. What's the absolute worst thing that could come out of this? We could have to move. Somehow this does not seem that cataclysmic after the things we've been through in previous years. (Please note, I don't believe wwill actually have to move, but is is the worst possible thing that could come of this which is why I use it to make my point.)

These events have really crystallized in my mind the things that are truly important to ME! Not anyone else, not societal standards, and not compared to my neighbor. Those things are, my family both immediate and extended, my friends, my pets, knowledge, and seeing the world. I do not give a hoot if someone else thinks travel is frivolous. In my opinion, it is one of the best gifts I can give my kids. It instills an open mind and a feeling that the world is not inaccessible. I am very picky about giving my kids THINGS, but I will take them almost anywhere. Embrace the fact that you want to travel and do not be ashamed of it!! Each and every person should decide what is important to them and you are lucky if you have found that, even if other people can't relate to it:) (For example, I do not understand the career thing. I am one of those people who would never have to work another day in my life to be content:eek: If I have to have a job though, I'm glad I have mine as a special ed teacher. I love it. :) :)

P.S. I'm 42, but I think my midlife crisis got lost in the shuffle.






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ricoba

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I think some of these doubts do come unfortunately as we age.

It's funny though about life. We live in a super massive megalopolis Los Angeles and long for the day when our kids finish HS (2010) and we can move to a smaller out of the way kind of a place.

For a year or two before moving here, we lived in a tiny town in Idaho, of about 300 people, that I agree is too small. But a small to mid sized city would be just fine with us. I know there is lots and lots to do here in the big city, especially a tourist city like LA, but you have to get used to doing everything with a million or so more people. Every time you want to go somewhere fun, you have to share that time with lots of other people, which means lots of congestion, smog, hustle etc.

So while some of you long to live in a big ole' city like LA, others of us from some of these big ole' cities sing out with Merle Haggard, when he sang,

"I'm tired of this dirty old city.
Entirely too much work and never enough play.
And I'm tired of these dirty old sidewalks.
Think I'll walk off my steady job today.

Turn me loose, set me free, somewhere in the middle of Montanna.
And gimme all I got comin' to me,
And keep your retirement and your so called social security.
Big City turn me loose and set me free."

Not so sure about the middle of Montana thing, but I like the sentiment! :D
 

pjrose

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Sue,

You love listening to the elderly people's stories. Are you writing them down? This is a piece of rural American history - and quite possibly more than that - that will be lost forever! You are a good writer - so get to work right now. You don't necessarily have to know what you're going to do with what you write - you don't have to do anything with it now - but some ideas are: at the very least, a typed up collection of reminiscences for the elderly people in homes to read. The next step is for the town or county historical society. Then how about a few free-lance articles for local magazines? The local Public TV station's monthly? Who knows where it can go from there - and meanwhile, you are listening to the people you love, hearing their stories, and saving them for posterity.

If being a freelance interviewer/writer works for you, then expand to writing about people you meet on your travels - and if that works, soon you will be traveling to meet people to write about.

And meanwhile, don't resist meds - there is nothing wrong with correcting or improving some chemistry that is out of whack, so you can better deal with issues that may be overwhelming to you.
 
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