By Troy Headrick
I’d like to share some good news with you. I was just awarded a “Master” certificate in Life Coaching. I can’t tell you how much this pleases me. There’s more than meets the eye to my certification story, though.
I’ve long been intrigued with coaching. In fact, though I’ve only recently been certified, I’ve been a life and learning coach for many years now. So, when I began to do online research about certification programs, I was lucky to find a renowned institution that would provide the credential based upon educational background, work and life experience, publication history, testimonials, and so on. I compiled a large collection of evidentiary documents and submitted it. In a little more than two weeks, I was granted certification.
My history as a life and learning coach began a couple of decades ago when I had an epiphany as an educator. I suddenly realized that I needed to stop thinking of those in my classroom as students first. Instead, I needed to see them as human beings. This paradigm shift changed me and the relationship I had with learners. I suddenly found that I had a knack for getting students to open up about their lives and challenges, those things that were keeping them from excelling in their academics. (This was partly a result of the fact that I began to model honesty, authenticity, and openness myself; I believe that we get from others what we give to them.) As a result, teaching became more pleasurable and holistic. I didn’t fully realize it at the time, but I was doing life and learning coaching and employing humanistic and Socratic methods. I had long used questioning as a tool to help students find and make meaning when working with texts, so to help them find and make meaning in their lives by employing probing inquiry was merely a natural progression in my development as a coach and educator.
I have also used journaling, a great self-exploration tool, in my teaching. (In fact, I have written about journaling here and here on this website.) Like I’ve said, I’ve already been coaching and using many coaching tools.
I’m partly writing this to reach out to any life and learning coaches who happen to be readers. If you are a coach and are willing to exchange a couple of emails with me, I would appreciate it if you could identify yourselves in the comments section. In my responses to you, I’ll share my email address.
I look forward to hearing from coaches and non-coaches alike. Thanks for reading.
Troy Headrick’s personal blog can be found here.