Get Your Shit Together...?

Today, I read a Facebook post by another coach asking, “To be a great coach, do you agree that you need to have all your shit together?”

Most responses agreed. Yes! You need to have your life sorted, be an expert, in order to coach other people. You can’t be successful if you’ve not got it all figured out.

At first, I agreed when I read it. But then, reality set in. And, No. You don’t have to have all your shit together to be a good coach.

What makes a good coach is empathy and understanding, helping someone else to discover the answers they already have but maybe have a block in their mindset that gets in their way.

Empathy is a key to this. Yes, a coach needs to come from a point of understanding, but do we ever have to have been in the same situation to feel true empathy? Empathy is the ability to go beyond just understanding what another person is feeling. Showing empathy involves feeling things from another person's perspective so that you can fully and truly and deeply feel their feelings, not just understand them.

As a coach, I don’t have to have been in the same situation as my client in order to be empathetic to how they’re feeling.

But, yes, I do have to have lived some life and had some similar experiences in order to truly KNOW what they are going through.

Having your shit together implies that you are done, complete, have it all figured out. In some ways this goes against my coaching ethics. I work with people to help them get beyond their limitations. To achieve their potential and beyond, to exceed their own expectations. If I have all my shit together, this seems to say that I have reached the pinnacle of my potential.

And, I have not.

I was having a conversation with a fellow coach a few weeks ago, and she was hesitant to start promoting her website. I think she’d told me and her parents about it, because she was worried she wasn’t enough of an expert as there are things in her life she’s still figuring out. I’d come across exactly this feeling when I started - and still know that I am a damn good coach without being an expert! - and sent her some information I’d found helpful. I titled my email, You don’t have to have all your shit together. :-)

Daily, I continue to grow, to see things from new perspectives, to learn from what went well [or didn’t] and to do better every day. Don’t get me wrong; I have figured out a lot of stuff. I’ve learned to not always be so hard on myself, that introspection and taking action are key, and that I don’t need so many things. I’ve learned that I like red wine, and that I love to travel on my own, and that I don’t need to do everything by myself, that it’s OK to say I need help.

If I’ve figured everything out, I stop growing. I’m not ready or prepared for that, so I am proud to say, I don’t have all my shit together.

Are you ready to take the next step and design the life you want? Get in touch with me at and book a 45 minute complimentary connection call, or visit my website to see what I can do for you and to hear more of my story.