Archive for the ‘Coach’ Category

Who’s on design*sponge? MY Coach!

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

You read it. You obsess over it.  It might even be your favorite blog.  (Well, besides this one of course!)  It’s the one, the only….

And who’s featured on it this week in the very popular biz ladies section?  As the expert that she is?  The one, the only….

Jackie Trepanier

MY Coach!  (That’s right people, I knew her when.)

In her article, she helps readers find their own mentor.  She leads them through the process including getting started, finding the right person and developing a meaningful relationship.  I really can’t encourage you enough to do this.  As you already know, having a mentor has been the difference for me.

Congratulations Jackie!  You’re going places.  Please don’t forget the little people when you’re at the top.

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Three Steps to Reduce Anxiety

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

Tums weren't going to solve my problem.

This past week I had a lot of anxiety.  I hate feeling this way, so I didn’t even want to admit to my coach, Jackie.  But luckily I did and she gave me three ways to alleviate the stress.

1.  Talk about the problem.  Don’t let your concerns swirl around your head and grow.  Discuss your thoughts with a friend or mentor.  Getting it off your chest will feel good.  Also, you might discover its not so bad after all.

2. Walk through the details. For me, I was concerned about a timeline.  By going through each due date to the ultimate goal I was able to find some wiggle room.  That extra space literally gave me some breathing room.  I bet you can find some relief in your details too.

3. Asses the true consequences. What will happen if you miss that deadline?  Don’t get that one deal?   Aren’t the first one done?  I mean, what will really happen?  My world wasn’t going to fall apart and I doubt yours is either.

What gives you anxiety?  What do you do about it?  I’d love to hear about your tips and techniques too.

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Cultivated Coaching

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

As with every Wednesday night, I coached with Jackie last night.  We talked about stuff.  Good stuff.  I might even tell you about it at some point.

But today I have more exciting news from her.  Cultivating Coaching – her business and her site – are officially launched!  (Check out the image above for a preview.)  The site design – including the custom social media icons below- were done by Kimberly Fisher.

I love supporting female entrepreneurs, but this one hits especially close to home.  Jackie’s coaching has been the difference between me thinking about having a business and actually having one.  I know she can find those differences in your life too.

Go to her site to see what coaching is all about, how you can change for the better and find out more about Jackie.   You’ll learn more about Cultivating Coaching, but more importantly, you’ll learn more about yourself.

Charming custom social media icons for Cultivated Coaching created by Kimberly Fisher.

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Getting Unstuck

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

Jackie is the Timon my Pumbaa. Yes, I realize in this scenario I am a warthog.

My coach, Jackie, does a great exercise to help me get un-stuck.  We’ve used it so many times recently to solve problems, I had to share it with you.  Here’s how it goes – simplified, of course.

Me:  Jackie, I don’t know what to do!  I can’t figure out how to tie my shoes.

Jackie:  Hmmmmm.  Tying your shoes is difficult.

Me:  I know!  How anyone ties their shoes everyday is beyond me.

Jackie:  OK, how would you tie your shoes in the future?  Like 5 years from now?

Me:  Oh, well, by then I would be an expert at tying my shoes.   I’d make the loops with ease.  Pull just the right amount.  I’d never even need to double knot!

Jackie:  Then THAT is what you should do NOW.

Me:  <Slaps hand on forehead and nods vigorously.>

Do you see what Jackie has so gracefully done?  Taken me out of the nitty-gritty of the now and elevated me to the goal in the future.  Helped me visualize what’s possible.  REMOVED THE LIMIT.

Try this exercise yourself and removed your self-imposed limits.  I personally guarantee results.  Great ones.

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I Spell Task B-A-R-F

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

You did something you don't like, what do you want, a cookie?

“Our coaching calls definitely take on one of two forms,” Jackie said to me after we finished our meeting tonight.  ”The first kind,” she continued, ” is the big thinking, big breakthrough kind.  The second type is more of what we had tonight.  Task oriented.”

Sounds thrilling, right?  Task oriented.  Barf.  I even dislike opening Numbers (the Apple version of Excel) sometimes because I know there’s a list of tasks in that program.

Jackie elaborated further, “Your voice even sounds different on these types of calls.  You really plow through it.”

As she said it, I realized there was even a crick in my neck from literally having my head down.  I was going through every task on the Big List, giving Jackie a status update and talking about the due date.  After we were done reviewing all my goals, Jackie gave me her input and I made some notes.

For all my ill will towards “task orientation” I feel great after these calls.  Having a coach as a sounding board keeps me focused, accountable and moving forward.  It makes me organized.  It makes me good at being detailed person when its not a natural strength.

I also feel a great sense of accomplishment knowing exactly where I am in every part of my business.  Its like the feeling you have when you dread getting off the couch to workout, but when you’re sweating and finished you feel awesome for doing it.

Who’s the person keeping you accountable?  How do you get the things done you don’t like to do?  And what’s the reward?  Please share any tactics you find valuable – I’m sure they will be for others as well.

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What’s the Risk?

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

Jaz-Z: A man who takes risks. Seems to have worked out OK for him.

As you read earlier this week, I was mad I wasn’t taking enough risk.  Before our weekly meeting I sent my coach, Jackie, a list of things I wanted to discuss and that risk issue had stars and lighting bolts around it.  In return Jackie wrote back:

I suggest we cross #2, #3 and #4 off our list first tonight in coaching so you can have the space to think BIG. Empire BIG. Like, Empire State of Mind Jay-Z Nearly a Billionaire BIG.

Excellent.  She got it.  I played the song a few times.  Once I sat in my desk and watched the video.  Then I got up, danced around, did air punches.  It felt good.

One of my other issues was I didn’t feel like this blog was visual enough.  Most of my favorite blogs are very visual.  The subject lends itself towards that or the person is a photographer, designer, etc..  This lead Jackie to ask me:

“What is your strength?”

“Um…well my strength is finding all the right pieces and putting them together to complete the vision,”  I replied.

“And what parts and pieces are missing from the blog?”

“I don’t know…” I lamented.

Jackie tried a different angle, “Where do you see this empire in the future?  What are you talking about on the blog then?”

Easily I started rattling things off, “I’m writing about the next bags, the latest person to carry a bag and how they wore it, the women’s organization we are helping and the bags we gave them, the redo of our office lobby, the awesome people who work here and the promotions they get, my lunch last week with Martha Stewart…”

I was out of breath.  ”Well, why not put all the in the blog?” Jackie questioned.

“Because it hasn’t happened yet.” I said matter-of-factly.

Then it hit me like a ton of bricks.  I actually had to fall back in my seat.  ”Jackie!” I shouted, “THIS is the big risk!  Putting my goals out there!  Thinking big out loud!”

Jackie had a smile on her face I could see through the phone.  ”WOW.”  she replied, “That IS it.  I got chills.”  We were both thrilled with the breakthrough.

“Now, you can dare to say it out loud.  You have permission.  You will get there faster by putting it out there.  This means you don’t have to be afraid.”  Jackie easily listed all the fabulous things that would happen by taking this risk.

This.  Is.  Huge.

Now I’m ready.  Ready for my “if you build it, he will come” moments.  Ready for the risk.  Ready for the reward.

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The Big List

Thursday, October 7th, 2010

The Big Gulp - What happens when you forget something on the Big List.

Everyone has lists.  Your to-do list, your follower list, your friend list, your grocery list, your Christmas list, your bucket list.

Well now I have the BIG list.

My coach suggested I come up with a list – and a subsequent timeline – of what needs to be done between now and my launch in April.  Line items include everything from interior fabric to waiting lists to 1-800 numbers to hosting to copyrights.  It is a BIG list.

Its not the size of the list that worries me.  (I get stuff DONE.)  And even though its a little daughting, its not even really the timeline that’s keeping me up at night.

Its the things that I have no idea about – the things I can’t even fathom I need/what – that give me the most strife.

What am I forgetting?  What am I leaving off the list?  What’s going to smack me in the face at the worst time and make my stomach drop to my toes?

If you’ve gone through a launch and have any suggestions, please let me know.  I’d love to learn from your big list/big gulp moment.

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New to Twitter? Here’s Your Crash Course

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Twitter & SEO Expert Chris Spiek

In my efforts to get my coach active on Twitter I asked my Twitter Guru – Chris Spiek of Awecomm Technologies – to get her on board.  Minus the pleasantries, here’s his email to her word for word.  Great advice for any entrepreneur just starting out on “The Twitter”.


I’d say that starting to use Twitter is like quitting smoking.  If you’re curious about it and you’re willing to commit to it for a few days, you’ll probably have success and get a lot out of it.  If you’re truly just not interested in it, then don’t bother.

Start by creating a Twitter account and following people that you know personally (me – @chriscbs and @alesya included).  Then go to Google and do some searches for people that you’re interested in within your industry, and the word Twitter; e.g. Guy Kawasaki Twitter, Steven Covey Twitter, etc.  It’s probably the easiest way to find people’s twitter feeds and quickly add people.  At this point you’ll at least be able to get a feel for how it works and how people interact.

With regards to a true social media strategy, you’ll have to adopt the way you push content out on Twitter to how you’re trying to grow your coaching business.  If you blog, it’s a great way to get people to read your new posts. If you don’t, find some industry people that are blogging and start conversations with them about their recent posts.  It’s a quick and easy way to build a strong reputation.

Finally, I’m a huge fan of a piece of software called Tweetdeck.  Download it after you have your twitter account and give it a try.  It will allow you to save searches for terms (e.g. “business coaching”) so you can quickly see the latest things that people have said related to that term e.g. “I’m looking for a business coach in Troy, Michigan – can anyone recommend someone good?”  It’s an easy way to jump into conversations.  Saved searches are displayed as columns, so it’s easy to manage a lot of them. If something interests me, I add it as a saved search.

Over time you’ll probably accumulate lots of followers, and in-turn, end up following a lot of people back (it’s the polite thing to do, unless they’re spammers or they don’t have a real picture as their avatar – I make it a point not to follow logos).  For this reason, I also like to create a couple of extra columns in Tweetdeck which makes it easy for me to scan in the morning over coffee, and throughout the day.  I call one “Real Friends.” These are people I know in real life.  When I open Twitter I want to make sure that I see things that they’ve written, even if I’ve been away for a while.  The other is “Influential” – people in my industry that I know I need to keep up with.

I know this is a lot to take in.  If you have questions or want to talk through anything over the phone, let me know.

Good luck!

P.S. As if there weren’t enough reasons to use Twitter, apparently if you ever find yourself imprisoned in Afghanistan, Twitter will help you escape -

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Elegant Mafia

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

It’s time for a review of my goals and I asked my coach, Jackie,  to send over a list of the subjects we covered during our very first coaching session.  Of course, she did me one better and sent over her meticulous notes, in a beautiful Cultivated Coaching chart with room for me to fill in my thoughts for our next meeting.  Awesome.

Lipstick Jungle vs. Cashmere Mafia: Shows that split ratings and both lost. I still miss the clothes.

Under my values I listed “elegant”.  When I read this I did a double take.  I wanted to be elegant?  Or I thought I was?  Hilarious.  If you asked me to rank “Elegant” as an important quality for my life right now it would end up somewhere around #427.

Further down the list I found the term “Cashmere Mafia“.  Now THIS sparked my interest.  Images of high powered, well dressed women with close friends came to mind.  A vision that got lost in the shuffle in the past 18 months.

These are prime examples of why it’s important to review and adjust your goals.  Your needs change.  Your expectations change.  Your life changes!

Some ideas you have to set aside.  They aren’t important or maybe just not feasible.  Other goals you forget about even if they are something you still want.

P.S. – If you review your goals and realize a Cashmere Mafia Membership is one of them, drop me a line.  We’re taking applications.

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Why You Need a Coach

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010
Jackie Trepanier

Jackie Trepanier

I have a coach.  No, not a therapist or a shrink.  A coach.  Think Phil Jackson to Michael Jordan without the fade away jump shot.

Let me introduce you to Jackie Trepanier.  She’s brilliant.  And better than being brilliant, she’s a fantastic coach.  Jackie has all the right education – she is an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credentialed through the International Coach Federation (ICF).  But what really makes her wonderful is the creative way she works to solve my problems.

She listens, questions and makes me find my way to the answer – the right answer for me.  Then we work together until the situation is resolved.  Its like having a world-class advisor in my back pocket.  Priceless.

Last year I conquered several stressful events (pregnancy/having a baby, selling a house, leaving a job and moving across the country) at once.  I wouldn’t recommend it.  Here’s what I know for sure though – if it weren’t for Jackie I wouldn’t have made it through the ordeal.  No way, no how.

Why you need a coach:

1. You have goals at work – make $455,000 in the 2nd quarter, improve efficiency by 12.7%, etc.  A coach can help you obtain YOUR (read: fun) goals. Want a promotion?  A bigger salary?  A way to get out the door by 6 PM?  A coach will help you do all those things.

2.  Maybe you don’t know what your goals are.  A coach can help you discover what you really want. And I think you’ll find out just showing up isn’t good enough anymore.

3.  You will experience change in your life.  Its inevitable.  A coach will help you navigate when times get tough. You’ll have the tools to face career, relationship and personal changes with grace.

4. Self-help books and articles are made for the masses.  (Sorry Dr. Phil.)  Only a coach can give you personalized guidance keeping your strengths in mind.

5. Having a coach isn’t all talk.  Your coach will encourage you to take action. When you “forget” to make that one call that could change your life, your coach will be asking you why.  Having someone holding you accountable to will change the way your act on your goals.

The life of a new entrepreneur is often a lonely one.  Having Jackie as my coach has given me a team atmosphere from the beginning.  Who is on your personal board of advisors?  Now you know the president of mine.

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