The Road to Becoming a Life Coach: Getting Started

Leading up to this announcement, I was struggling to find the right words to say and the right things to share about this life milestone. I am jittery with positive emotion as I wrap up my last class, but I have to reflect, with honesty, on the moments that led up to this.

The decision to go back to school of any type was one I battled with for more than a year. Did I have the time for it? Was it worth the financial investment? Was I going to be fulfilled in what I was learning? How would it apply and provide a benefit to my employers?

I was happy with my profession and inspired by leadership, but I was quickly losing passion. Days were slower, time was opening up and the projects I was a part of started to feel less challenging. Was I even making a difference in the world? As a manager and mentor, I always challenged people who shared these thoughts with me and repeated:

It’s important to find passion in everything you do. Be it behind a desk, on the front lines of a service project, you have to look for it. It’s there somewhere.

I knew it was up to me to find that passion again, so the hunt began. I first used Coursera to enroll in a few higher education classes to find out if certain educational paths were right for me. I took everything from a business administration to marketing class online as I tried a variety of potential higher education journeys. Still, I wasn’t satisfied. I didn’t quite agree with some of the things I was reading based on client experience and I knew I wouldn’t be able to stomach the cost of graduate school.

While at Florida State University, I completed the undergraduate program in Leadership Studies. All my experiences here were among the most memorable and fulfilling, including mentors like Dr. Osteen who changed the course of my life dramatically. Could I do something in this realm and what would that look like? And what about the perception others already had of me? My personal brand. Is there something I could do that was authentic to me and enhanced this?

Cue becoming a life coach.

Once I started doing my research on ICF-certified programs (that’s international recognition and certification) and meeting with advisers, I knew this was the path for me. Think about my online presence, even, I’ve made it my mission to help others find passion and become their best selves. That’s what this blog is about, that’s why mentorship is important to me, that’s my reason to believe.

I selected Erickson International because they offered flexible virtual classrooms - not online classes at your own pace, just a live digital presence you can fulfill from your home. They also put an emphasis on the art and science of coaching. Let’s be real: if I was investing money in this I wanted to make sure there was scientific and empirical data to support what I was learning. I also really enjoyed the community they built and felt it was right for me.

I signed up for the once a week, 6 a.m. local time course. I woke up gladly each Wednesday morning ready and eager to learn. But once I was in the rhythm of attending class, the next challenge was finding balance between my personal and professional life, and this new passion project. Remember those slow work days? They turned up about 100 notches as I began this journey.

There were days that I questioned if this was right for me. There were days that I didn’t sleep. There were days I stayed up until 3 a.m. reading material that fascinated me. There were days - three days in fact - where I happened to be on the West Coast or on an airplane during class time so that meant 3 a.m. classes or some from 10,000 feet. There were days I gleamed about life coaching to my friends. And there were days I really had to sit with myself and find a way to remind myself to commit.

Today I finish my last semester - or module as Erickson calls it. Along the way I’ve learned skills in listening, openness, asking the right questions, and truly understanding and believing that what we need is inside all of us. With the right guidance, we can tap into ourselves to find what we’re looking for. I am living a values-driven life, with passion. I understand the importance of having a vision, and I am creating one for myself and my coaching practice.

What’s next?

While I continue my learning, I have to host practice sessions in tandem with my courses. I have a list of friends and colleagues that will help me refine my skills over the next year or so. You’ll see more and more of my lessons reflected in my online presence and the way I live my day to day.

One of the main reasons why I wanted to become a life coach is also because I found a gap in these types of professionals and how they were speaking to millennials. Gone are the days that a life coach is only relevant to a c-suite executive or someone at their mid-life crisis. Everyone could use this level of professional guidance toward creating a vision and setting actionable steps to reach a goal. Once I am certified, I’ll bring an offering to this community through a lens that makes sense for my generation.

I also hope to use becoming a life coach to build out Marketable Millennial in a place where I can better hone in and focus on sharing these anticipated “life hacks” and “life lessons” by LC - from a place of more credibility. More blog topics and webinars (woops - am I revealing too much?) that come from this lens.

And I truly hope that you’ll join me along the journey. Ask questions, share topics you want me to write about, and let’s grow together.

Lissette Calveiro Life Coach 1
Lissette Calveiro Life Coach 2
Lissette Calveiro Life Coach 3

December 21, 2013

One year ago, we were told our world would cease to exist on this day.

The world is still breathing.

What was most interesting, to me, is that one year ago people across the globe started “living life to the fullest,” loving their neighbor unconditionally and finally making the most out of the seconds we may or may not have had left.

I’m certain that’s where the beauty of 2013 comes from.

I hear it time and time and again, “2013 was my year.” 2013 was the year people felt most grateful for their accomplishments, company and selves. I’m certain that this is because life was almost “taken away” from us. But, why are we waiting for someone to tell us we’re going to die to start living?

‘Cause you only need the light when it’s burning low
Only miss the sun when it starts to snow

Only know you’ve been high when you’re feeling low
Only hate the road when you’re missin’ home

My challenge to you: take these simple steps toward making 2014 just as magical as 2013. Don’t wait for the next conspiracy theorists to do it for you.

Be Grateful

Take inventory of all the beautiful things in your life. One year ago, my mother was diagnosed with a very dangerous cancer. It wasn’t until this dark moment that I started to appreciate her for the endless hours of love and support that she provided me with. This brought us closer together, and I will never again let an illness remind me how important she is.

An activity I’ve adopted, credit due to my SpeechWriting professor, is writing a ‘thank you’ card every week to someone. Write it to a friend, a family member, a classmate, a teammate, a mentor, a stranger, someone who you are thankful for in the universe. If opening up and communicating with others is too difficult for you, keep a journal and write down one thing you’re grateful for when you wake up, and one thing you appreciate from your day before you hit the sack.

Be Positive

Despite all the hardships you and I have been through, it’s the power of positivity that keeps us moving forward. Countless obstacles this year had the power to hold me back from reaching my fullest potential. Adopting gratefulness and clinging to all the good that exists, I very easily pushed through.

The law of attraction tells us that “if you think it, it shall happen.” But, the trick is to really embrace the power of positivity to attract all that you wish and need for your personal life. The power of positivity is difficult to explain in short, but learning to harness it benefits your mental and physical health. And most importantly, improves your quality of living. Next time the universe drops a bomb on your lap, slap a smile on and pick yourself right up!

Be Purposeful

Finding your purpose in life will be the most important step to living a fulfilling life. No, I’m not talking about declaring a major and writing a plan for what the next 10 years will look like. I’m asking you to find what you’re passionate about, find what makes you happy and find the things that launch you forward in the most enjoyable way. Putting these thoughts together help determine your purpose.

Discovering your purpose helps guide you in the right direction. How do we really know if we’re making the right decision when presented with a tricky opportunity? Make sure it aligns with that purpose. Mine? Building bridges for people and finding ‘the good.’ I discovered, this year, that my place on this planet is to help place people on this planet. Using public relations as a vehicle, I help people and brands find what’s positive about them and I reveal this to the world, hopefully building a bridge between the two.

Be a Dreamer

It’s important to set goals and accomplish them to feel as though you’re successful. But, just as important, dream about the insurmountable potential inside you and the multiple directions your life could take. Eventually, these dreams start to become your reality and before you know it, you’re at the center. Bonus points if you get risky: by challenging yourself, you’ll find that you land in far more satisfying places. Besides, what better way to lift yourself out of a slump than doing something extraordinary?

At the start of the year, I dreamt about all the places I could go this summer and complete my internship requirement. The most feasible option was right at home, at the agency I already worked at. But, the dream? New York City. Publicity. Fashion. Broadway. I got it all. I didn’t get it because I was lucky. I got it because as this became my reality, there was no way I was going to let it slip away. I sent tons of resumes and cover letters out, interviewed for days, and then selected the most incredible internship experience I could have for myself.

Now, as you jot down New Year Resolutions, my hope is that you stray from shedding pounds and head toward establishing more fulfilling days of your lives. Don’t let sunsets remind you of all the things you didn’t do during the day. Don’t let a cold breeze remind you of all the warmth you let go in your life.

Start living today, because we don’t know how much time we really have on this earth.