Coach Interview Series: Kevin Priestly

by Brandon

Kevin Priestly

Life Coach

Climb High Coaching

Our main objective here at the National Coach Academy is to enable aspiring coaches to reach their full professional potential. One of the most effective ways to educate students about the world of coaching is by offering them a window into the world of real, practicing coaches and showing them all the different ways coaches make a difference in the lives of their clients.

We hope today’s interview adds another insightful glimpse into the dynamic world of coaching.

Today we are interviewing Kevin Priestly. Kevin is a life coach and owner of Climb High Coaching based in Lorton, VA.

NCA: Can you describe your coaching practice and the kinds of clients you typically work with?

Kevin: “Climb High Coaching” typically works with teenagers that are energized about going in a particular direction, but unsure and overwhelmed by the next step(s) to take in order to get there.

Helping teens find balance in school, family, recreation, relationships and whatever else that seems to block the overall vision for success.

NCA: What initially got you interested in this career path and what kind of degree or certifications did you need to complete, if any?

Kevin: I had been driving a commercial vehicle for over 6-7 years, and complaining to my sister about how tired and unfulfilled I was.

She interrupted me and said, “You should become a life coach.” I had never heard of that until she said it. I started doing a little research about it and then thought… “I could actually do this!”

Thanks, sis!!

I became interested in life coaching for teenagers, in particular, because, of my teenage experience.

I knew inside, that I had untapped potential but, I had no idea how to go about taking what I knew to the next level. I was afraid of not being accepted for who I was, and what I was capable of. I was good at football and soccer. I was also a good communicator. I did not know that these were gifts that I could invest in. Although my parents did the best they could with their support and direction, I did not have or know about the right resources in order to advance from where I was, to where I envisioned myself to be!! Every time I thought about what I should do next, I became overwhelmed and decided that this wasn’t for me! “Its too much, or too expensive, or no one would listen to what I had to say”!

I wish I had someone to show me how to make small, steady, tactical moves so I could push forward with momentum for empowerment, and eventually….. success.

This is why I communicate with so much passion when I have a young person in front of me because I feel like I am telling my younger self what I wish someone would have told me….”You are enough!!” These teenagers are me!!

Getting my Certificate at CTA (Coach Training Alliance) has helped me reach that goal of being the most effective guiding light for that teenager!!

NCA: What is the most rewarding part of your career?

Kevin: Watching a teenager have an aha! moment in a session is the most rewarding part of my career! The light goes off and their countenance change! They have a shift in their thinking, empowerment takes over, they move, succeed and then tell me that I was a key part in their development… That is a process, but, I have seen that come together all at once, and it is nothing short of amazing for me as a coach!

NCA: What is the most challenging aspect of the work that you do?

Kevin: The most challenging for me as a coach is, convincing the young client that they are so much more than they play themselves to be. There are many times where the very thing that they are nervous or insecure about, is the very thing that will ensure the breakthrough that they are looking for! Keeping them from giving up and saying” I don’t know” is also a challenge. They sometimes refuse to see that the answer is actually not as hard as they are making it. The one small thing that they know, IS the answer! That is definitely challenging!

This is why I communicate with so much passion when I have a young person in front of me because I feel like I am telling my younger self what I wish someone would have told me “You are enough!!” These teenagers are me!!

NCA: Can you think of one client or mentor who challenged your beliefs or made you rethink the way you approach your clients or your work?

Kevin: My mentor showed me through his action, that you have to go for what you want! I’ve learned from him that every opportunity is what you create. Luck will fall your way as you keep working, but typically, no one is going to hand it to you. I’m an introvert, so that is hard for me, but definitely necessary for me to embody as I still work on that today!
He also told me to use what I know and who I am as a selling point.

(e.g I am an introvert, and that helps me to relate to the teen that is overwhelmed, shy, and anxious) People love and detect open honest energy and that will sell too!

NCA: Finally, what advice would you give someone looking to get started in the career path that you chose?

Kevin: Because I am not entirely “business savvy”, this can be a struggle. Marketing, advertising, connections, etc. However, if you love what you do, you will never want to stop! You will be energized by the peaks, and learn from the many valleys as you establish yourself in this path! Be open with your clients! They will appreciate you more and will spot if you are just here for show… Love what you do, and you will never have to work another day in your life!

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