Last week, I had the opportunity to be Sheryl’s guinea pig in her new “Walk and Talk Coaching” endeavor. I have mentioned Sheryl multiple times, but, for those of you who don’t know, she is a fellow Kentuckian behind the blog How to Make a Life. We have met several times in person, and she’s honestly one of the warmest, most genuine people I’ve ever met. We talk frequently and I’m happy to say that she’s become a friend. She is a true blessing in my life.
By day, Sheryl is a counselor and life coach, and, earlier this year, she approached me about her new “Walk and Talk Coaching” initiative. In her words, here’s what it’s all about: “Walk and Talk Coaching is an opportunity for women in the Lexington, Kentucky area to walk with a personal life coach while identifying and addressing issues of concern. Walk and Talk sessions help one address mental, physical and emotional health at the same time. Walk and Talk sessions are coaching sessions where the focus is upon helping you improve your quality of life while identifying and focusing upon where you desire to be.”
The walking portion of the session was an interesting concept to me. While I’ve never attended traditional therapy, I have participated in a couple of career coaching sessions that took place in an office environment and felt very formal – almost like an interview. But, as Sheryl states on her site, “Research shows that a walk in nature can improve mood, increase creativity, and assist in making decisions.” I’ve always felt that walking helps clear my head, and I found it to be beneficial in my session with Sheryl as well. I wasn’t distracted. I felt like I could be vulnerable and forthright. I was in a great mood and motivated to work. And I got a workout, too!
While I won’t go into details about the topic of our session, I will say it was incredibly helpful. We exchanged emails before we met and she asked what I’d like to discuss beforehand so she could familiarize herself with my needs. Moving forward with other clients, a (free) 15 minute consultation via phone will take the place of our email conversation. Prior to our meeting, she also sent a “Wheel of Life” balance sheet so I could pinpoint which areas of my life require the most work. It was interesting to see how out of balance my life is when it’s written on paper.
We met on a gorgeous afternoon in Lexington. After rain and up-and-down temperatures, we couldn’t have asked for better weather. She took me on a beautiful trail in the Hamburg area that I didn’t even realize was there! While the path was understandably busy, it still seemed intimate and professional.
Each session lasts for 50 minutes and that’s the perfect amount of time to conduct a fluid conversation. I told her where I was struggling, she asked all the right questions, and we began developing a plan of action. She never made me feel like my issues were silly and I wasn’t uncomfortable discussing them while we walked the busy path (as was my fear). The session flew by – I could have walked with her for hours! And once our walk was over, Sheryl gave me some homework. I’ve began putting her suggestions into practice and have seen a major difference in my stress level in just a few days.
I honestly felt better than I have in months after our session. It was as if Sheryl helped me break through a creative barrier – I’ve felt clearer and more motivated than I have in a long time. I’m also taking the steps to finally start a side business I’ve wanted to do for years. I credit Sheryl with that inspiration. I’m ready for another session and do plan on scheduling one soon. If she can help me in one area of my life in 50 minutes, why not try to work on some other things, too?
I admit I was nervous before our session but her warm personality and professionalism quickly alleviated my fears. I believe even those who don’t know her personally will find comfort in her direction.
If you are in the area and interested in your own “Walk and Talk Coaching” session with Sheryl, visit her site for information on planning, pricing, and more. If you have any questions, let me know! I highly, highly suggest scheduling a session, especially if you’re struggling in one (or multiple) areas in your life. She offers fantastic advice and has already contacted me to see if I’m following through with the “homework” she gave me at the end of our walk.
*I received a free session in exchange for this review. However, all opinions are my own and I honestly feel like it’s a concept everyone should get behind. If you’re struggling in any way, this is a great place to start.