I am a life coach. Because of this often people think I have all the answers to life, or that I know more then they do. I don’t.
Or sometimes it’s the opposite, people say (or think) things like, “Who is she to think she can talk about life?” … maybe tagging it along with, “She’s too young, uneducated, inexperienced, pretty, too silly, too lighthearted, to messed up, too slow, or too fast”. Whatever judgments they give to make reason of their position. Sometimes the press even picks it up, as it did in 2012 when I was mentioned in the New York Times article, “Should a Life Coach Have a Life First?”. I’ve been glorified and demonized, and neither one is true.
Here is the thing: I don’t know more then you. I’m not better at living life then you are. I’m not ‘special’ anymore then you are special. My life is filled with joy and pain. I learn lessons, I go through sorrow. I beat myself up sometimes. I celebrate myself. My life is messy, and that is okay. I have great ideas and I have horrible ones. I succeed and I fail.
Here is what I have learned: I used to want to 'get it all right', finally be 'perfect', and also wanted to be connected to everyone and have deep, meaningful relationships. Then, I saw that having both these things was impossible. Every person has a modus operandi, a way that they behave under pressure or when they are trying to protect themselves. Mine has always been aloofness, snobbery, being an elitist. To my subconscious (and my ego) this protected me from being hurt. Then my heart saw a bigger picture – that this very action was keeping me from being connected to others (and ultimately, from my own greatness).
You see, what is really neat is that we are all sharing this human experience, and it’s not meant to be perfect. If I was ‘perfect’, if I got it all right and knew all the answers, I would cease to be an effective Life Coach. It is because of my connectedness, my ‘sameness’ in others that I can shine in my profession.
The big T truth is that I have unlimited wisdom inside of me & that I was born to be brilliant, talented, gorgeous and fabulous. And guess what? So were you. We are the same. We are connected. We are one. We were both made to manifest the beauty and richness of Life itself. Because I know this in me, I can know it in you.
Much like a journalist has learned to ask the right questions at the right time, and learned to follow his hunch to a lead on a story – I have been trained to ask the right questions and the right time and follow my hunch on a lead to assist a client to unlock their greatness. And, ya know what? My Life Coach does it for me, too! Yes, that is right, I have a life coach. Why? Because even if I have all of the right questions, or the best tools, I can’t get out of my own head. Only another person can help me do that. To me, that is the coolest thing about being a human on this planet; I need others to thrive. In fact, I need them to survive. I am human because I belong . I am because we are.
I was inspired to write this post after struggling over the past few months with my own hurt feelings, listlessness, and stagnation. I wanted to hide those experiences from others, and hold up some standard of perfection, of ‘doing it right’ for my community. It took me awhile to remember that what really makes me beautiful, what really makes me effective at my work and in my relationships, what makes me who I am, is: my humanness.
Being ‘perfect’ (or attempting to show up that way) isn’t a great credential. In fact, it stinks. Being honest, vulnerable, and embracing every experience of life – the good and the bad – that is something to ‘write home about’. That is a credential that I want to stamp on my soul.
I am flawed, wonderfully flawed. My life is messy. My lessons come in all shapes and sizes. And ya’ know what? It’s f*ckin’ awesome.
Mindy Amita Aisling
ICF Life Coach,
NFPT Fitness Trainer,
OMA Certified Mediator
Mindy Aisling is a certified life and business coach in Bend, OR, exceeding all of the educational requirements & training set forth by the ICF.
She has worked with such organizations as St. Charles Hospital, Soroptimists, The Dispute Resolution Center, Olympic Medical Center, Americorps, and Juvenile and Family Services.
She has been featured in the New York Times, The Seattle Times, The Bend Bulletin, The Peninsula Daily News, KOMO 4 TV, The Oregonian and many more. You can learn more about Mindy here.
Mindy offers professional, affordable online coaching to clients around the world, and local coaching to clients in Bend, Oregon.
Licensed and Insured