If you’ve got an unusual passion and you’re worried you can’t make a living from it because no-one else is doing it, get ready to have your mind blown. Life coach Lucy Sheridan left the advertising world almost five years ago – reinventing herself as the world’s first comparison coach. If you want to know how to become a successful life coach or are just curious about what a comparison coach does, read on…
Name: Lucy Sheridan
Job title: The Comparison Coach
Years since changing career path: Four and a half
TAP: You’re known as the comparison coach – what exactly does your job entail?
LS: I work with people to help them achieve sharp self-focus, self-confidence and commitment to the life they want to live rather than copy or borrow the dreams of other people. Ultimately, I help people go from a life that’s full of compare and despair to one that’s comparison free.
TAP: You haven’t always worked in this field. Tell us about your previous career and why you made the change
LS: My work life began in my late teens when I worked in retail for companies like Habitat and TK Maxx. After graduating from university I worked as a brand strategist in the advertising industry. It was a role that involved a lot of research, and I loved that aspect of it because I have always been interested in what makes people tick!
However, I ended up leaving that field because the political climate became, at best, a bit boring and, at worst, obstructive to the job I was there to do. Then I did some coaching training and that gave me a glimpse of what life in a different career could be like. It was at that point that I knew I wanted to explore the field of life coaching more seriously.
TAP: It’s safe to say that you’ve created a brand new type of job. Describe the thought process you went through as you entered unchartered waters.
LS: For me, it was about gut instinct combined with patterns I found impossible to ignore. To provide some context, I noticed that whenever I blogged about comparison or even talked about social media and our judgements in the pub, it would always prompt a reaction or conversation. It’s something that has also followed me around in my life, so it was also a personal topic for me.
Clearly, comparison was something experienced by so many of us and yet there was such a taboo around the topic. I decided that I would try focusing my coaching on the comparison message just as a 90-day test and see how I got on. The rest, as they say, is history.
TAP: What would you say was the most important thing you did/didn’t do to succeed?
LS: I was – and I am – very discerning about who I share my dreams, progress and news with. The reason being, everyone has an opinion and I found that something as small as a well-meaning pal asking me how my business was going could spin me out and knock my confidence for a long tie afterwards if I was having a bad day! So protecting my confidence and progress was important.
If I could add a cheeky second thing, I would say that another important action that helped me immensely was asking. I have never been afraid to ask for what I want and it has always come off well. Don’t wait – ask!
TAP: Describe a typical working day for you? What are the highs and lows?
LS: I will start the day with journaling and setting my intentions, and then I will see clients on Skype through the day – around four a day. In between clients I will dip into social media and chat in the comments of my Instagram posts. I’ll also have calls with new clients to hear what they are looking for so I can go back to them with a proposal. I have few highs and lows, but my favourite thing is the client sessions and the things I find less enjoyable are managing my email inbox which is off the charts!
TAP: Does the reality of being a comparison coach live up to the dream?
LS: In a word, ‘yes’. It has taken me to places and connected me with people I could never have imagined meeting. I really consider it a true honour to do this work.
TAP: What’s the one thing anyone wishing to break into coaching from another field should do?
LS: Be in it for the right reasons and for the long haul. Take your time to find your voice, your vibe and your take on your message and then just go for it! There are no quick fixes, so please don’t expect overnight success – it’s just not realistic. I have seen so many coaches come and go in my five years in the industry, so if you want sustained awareness and growth, set your GPS to your own vision and go for it with the faith that the results you want will come in time.
TAP: Can you share three resources that you think are invaluable for breaking into coaching?
LS: Playing Big: Find your Voice, Your Mission, Your Message by Tara Mohr; Genevieve Davis – all of her books – and The Desire Map by Danielle Laporte.
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