An Open Letter to Life Coaches About Social Media

by Amy on October 19, 2015

iStock_000066099493_Small-2

She’s the most beautiful woman I know in real life.

Well not exactly “real life.”

I’ve only interacted with her on Facebook.

On Facebook…

Her hair is perfectly styled.
Her lipstick is always that just-right shade of red.
She wears only the finest labels.
She vacations in exotic places.
She looks exquisite in a bikini.

Like her, I, too, am a life coach.

But…

My hair is in a ponytail bun.
I wear red lipstick awkwardly.
My style is hardly haute.
My vacations are few and far between.
And let’s just say, I used to be exquisite in a bikini.

In the age of social media, it’s easy for coaches to think we have to be “Pinterest Perfect” to be legit.

Some coaches shine on social media. We use them as our litmus test. And if we aren’t…

Vacationing in exotic locales,
Showing off our latest pair of Jimmy Choo’s,
Savoring a fine meal with attractive people,
Or sharing photos of fresh flowers on a immaculately clean table,

AND carefully documenting it all on our social media platform of choice…

We start to wonder if we have any right to exist in an industry that strives to help others meet their full potential.

Two years ago, I quit drinking.

Partly because it’s an understatement to say my mom and dad had issues with booze, partly because I was wishing for a glass of wine by 3:30pm, partly because I knew it was NOT a good thing to coach clients with a hangover.

Drinking was a fabulous way to avoid dealing with the other challenging areas of my life. Without wine, my highly sensitive brain now has to cope with a noisy household of young children (sober!) and an obsessive compulsive tendency to dwell on friends who don’t call anymore and that one time when my sister publicly harangued me at my own garage sale.

Or how I just dropped $1000 bucks online at MadeWell.

Or how I fantasize about getting a tummy tuck.

You don’t see that on Facebook.

Yet I am a successful life coach (by my standards).

I feel like it’s on my shoulders to balance out the flowers, candles, fine dining, chic parties, beautiful dresses and perfect bodies cataloged on Facebook, Pinterest, and Periscope for all to see.

Here’s the thing…

Virtual high fives to the boss ladies on social media. They show what is possible for all of us.

But don’t YOU think for a second that what you see online is the full picture. Don’t put THEM on a pedestal. Don’t write yourself off because you just screamed at your kid or ate a sleeve of Neman’s O’s or picked your nose or bought an expensive pair of pants instead of writing that speaking contract.

The other day I was reading some posts in a private Facebook group for coaches when one by a well known master coach got my attention. The first line of her post read “Master coaches are human.” She went on to confess that she made a “big mistake.” Turns out she lost track of time and missed a coaching session.

As of the time of this post, there were over 30 comments of appreciation from other coaches thanking her for her honesty.

It was a very nice post, but PEOPLE…

Of fucking course Master Coaches are human. Is this news?

Master life coaches have an extra certification. Depending on the cert program master life coaches paid anywhere from two to ten grand to get another letter by their name. Master life coaches have more hours under their belt learning how to use coaching tools.

In what world does that make them super human?

I hate to burst your bubble, but there are amazingly gifted healers, coaches, thought leaders and service providers out there who:

Drink too much
Eat too much
Weigh too much
Curse too much
Spend too much
Smoke too much
Worry too much

And (gasp)

Completely space out and miss sessions with clients.

I’ll stand up — if I have to — and be the mascot for imperfect coaches who run successful practices. I’ll do it. I WILL. But the reality is WE ARE ALL IMPERFECT!!!!!

Coaches, repeat after me:

You do not have to be perfect, Pinterest or otherwise, to be of service. If you’re comparing yourself to all those pretty pictures on social media and find yourself falling short, you are NOT allowed to let that be your excuse to bow out.

Don’t let social media play upon your perfectionistic tendency to write yourself off just because you don’t live up to a fairy tale ideal of what your life “should” look like.

It’s the “easy” way out.

Just a convenient excuse to NOT do what you were put on this earth to do.

Appreciate all that beautiful branding. Celebrate the lady bosses for being a shining example of what you too can accomplish.

BUT don’t let the golden sparkles hypnotize you into thinking that you cannot do your thing with cardboard and construction tape. <–TWEET THAT

Because…

You’ve got it too babe. It’s called YOUR purpose. We all have one, remember? And it is NOT to be diminished by cultural standards of what is cool, sexy or hip.

We are all human beings having a human experience. No one is enlightened. Despite what you see online or off.

And you sure as hell don’t have to be…

To help another human.

#thatisall

Thinking you have to be “Pinterest Perfect” to be a legitimate coach is a form of mind clutter that will keep you from more money and an epic impact in your coaching practice. If you want to hear me talk about the other forms of mind clutter I see in the coaching world, join me for:

Mind Clutter tile 3

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Wendy October 19, 2015 at 6:56 pm

so good amy! i eat too much. i worry too much and i compare too much. i still seek approval too often. and i just missed an appointment with a client last week.

it’s easy to see all you crazy successful master coaches and want to be like you one day. it’s difficult to believe at times that i too can have a tribe that engaging- period. let alone by NOT becoming a master coach myself. sigh.

one day at a time. in my own reality i do the best i can.

thank you amy!

Reply

Bevin July 25, 2016 at 12:34 am

Amy,
I love your style – tell it like it is, my sister! As a life coach who helps clients with authenticity, much of what is online and portrayed as the ‘ideal’ is really detrimental. And, I am fundamentally interested in helping people step up to their personal best, if that is jet setting so be it, if that is something much different, then hallelujah to being yourself unapologetically.

Reply

Leave a Comment


Previous post:

Next post:

Amy Pearson's Live Brazen / Radical Results for Your Biz and Life


amy@livebrazen.com

@ Amy Pearson | Live Brazen 2013Design By:Janet Pashleigh