Life coaching session for negative self talk
Details of Consultation:
I began the session by thanking Client for coming along and taking part in my case study for life coaching. I explained exactly what my role as a life coach was and walked her through the various tools we would be using today. I introduced Client to the contract of respect, honesty, timing and confidentiality. The first thing we did was move on to our treatment card, this was so I could learn more about Client’s health, history and lifestyle. Client was very open and honest, which laid a good foundation for the rest of the session.
Client is 56, lives with her partner, and is recently retired from a very consuming and stressful job after she was rushed to hospital with a suspected heart attack. Client feels happier in herself now that she has left work, as the stress was causing such anxiety that it brought on the heart attack. The one thing she does miss is the structured routine a 9-5 job gave her. Client has asthma and has had it for many years. She is on numerous tablets to control her blood pressure, but has always worked busy jobs where she has been on her feet all day.
Self Talk Issues
I then asked Client to tell me what an exceptional life for her was? Client thought about this and said, “A life where I am healthy, not constantly tired, and have enough energy to actually do my hobbies.” Client confessed that she has got into the habit of eating dinner later in the evening, staying up to 1am watching films, and finds it hard to get into a sleeping pattern, so constantly wakes up feeling tired and un-motivated. She believes this is because she has always worked all her life and built her home life around her work life, but for the first time since she was sixteen Client doesn’t have a job and feels lost. Client uses a lot of negative self-talk during the client card assessment, which we spoke about, I explained that we are what we say we are. Client decided she needed to fix that internal voice. I asked Client how she would know when she has achieved her goals? She said she would know when she was happier, healthier and in a better routine, and I explained that we can work on all these issues, and would she like to get started?
We began with a brain storming session to find what motivated Client, what she would love to do with her time, why she hadn’t done these things, what where her obstacles and the reason she delayed doing the things she actually wanted to do. A big part of her reasoning was because of work, but now that she is out of work there was no reason for not doing them. The fact she hadn’t got started doing anything made her feel worthless. The list of things she wanted to do was long, but the structure of her life was gone and her internal conversation was very negative.
We decided to make a list of all the things we spoke about and then rated them of how easy/difficult they would be to achieve, the cost of change to place the changes into effect, affect on family, affect on self, and then totalled them. This exercise opened Client’s eyes to many things. Many of the changes were ranked as easy to do, but the inner voice made her feel it was much harder. So, we came up with four affirmations to reprogram Client’s mind when she spoke or thought about these subjects. One thing that chart threw up was that numerous obstacles were rated high on family effect. Client didn’t even consider this aspect before and she realised she relied heavily on her partner, wouldn’t do things without his support or was worried about upsetting him by changing her routine. I explained this change was for her, and her alone. Client was also aware that more independence would be better for her relationship with her partner. I reminded her of the affirmations and strength she had to follow through.
We decided to repeat the exercise again, as so many new things had come to light. Client’s body language, choice of words and facial expressions had vastly changed since our introduction. She was actively correcting her negative self-talk as we continued. We rated the new list, breaking down the “big” things on the first list, allowing Client to see a road map to success. When we broke down this list, setting smaller steps, Client rated these tasks easier to do, giving her the feeling of power and that she had control of her life again.
We decided to focus on six goals from our long list, each one challenged a different aspect of Client’s life, and we decided to meet again in one week, to check on her progress. One of the six goals was to sign up to a oil painting class, something she had always wanted to do, but didn’t do it out of fear. Fear was replaced by reward, self-belief and the desire to change. Another goal was to have dinner earlier in the evening, another goal was to be in bed by a certain time. To get her body into the routine of this is when I eat, this is when I sleep, and this is when I wake. Client set herself two other targets of buying a pedometer to monitor how far she can walk, as Client wants to try to do hill walking, so she can go on long hikes with her Dog. The final goal was for Client to do her affirmations morning, day and night to change the negative self-talk.
We ended the session here, I gave her the contract, goal sheet and all my contact details. I felt this was a positive session, and Client had all the skills and resources to achieve her goals, but needed a road map to highlight the path to walk. Since the initial session Client has her pedometer and enjoying going to new places to walk her dog. She is in a better routine with eating earlier in the day and going to bed at a regular time. She says she feels fitter, stronger, healthier and happier. She has found a class to join, but cannot start it until next month. She finds the affirmations have really helped change the voice inside her head. We have now moved onto achieving other goals from the long list of things she wanted to do, but has graded these things easier to do now since completing her first week of six goals, which has given Client all her power back.
End of case study example
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