Coach Interview Series: Michele Landers

by Brandon

Michele Landers

Life Coach and Hypnotherapist

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 Michele Landers. Michele is a Life Coach, Hypnotherapist, and Numerologist based in West Palm Beach, Florida.

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

Michele: I deal very much in the spiritual realm with people who are looking for more meaning in their life. I also work with people who are in transition and who feel as if maybe they’re either stuck or they’re at a certain part or a time in their life where they feel, “My God, is this all there is? What more can I get out of life? Am I following my passion? Am I doing what I really want to do?” Those are mainly the type of clients that I deal with.

Most of the time, people who are feeling stuck have tried to do it on their own, but the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. I help clients see another way or to do things a little bit differently. I deal with a lot of women — mainly women in transition. Occasionally there will be a man who will say, “I’ve been doing this career for 30 years and I’m just not fulfilled.”

I think we’re moving towards a different direction in this world of people realizing that it’s really important to find out what it is that you love to do. That’s why we’re all here — to contribute something of our talents, our gifts, and share that with the world. That’s why we are all here on this planet. Part of my job is to support people in finding that gem, that diamond inside of them to discover who they really are and what their talents and their gifts are and how they can share it with the world.

NCA: What initially got you interested in this career path?

Michele: I started out in the medical community as an administrator. I worked with a neurosurgeon at the time. This was in the early 80s. I was so interested in how the mind worked. I was able to get a glimpse of how the three pounds that we have in our skull operates. I was fascinated by the transmission of information through cells and synapses. Then we opened up a pain clinic and I had an opportunity to glimpse what our mind can do and how powerful our mind is. We can control pain impulses and that fascinated me.

From there, I started looking into Eastern and Western philosophy. I realized that we are incredible beings with so many untapped abilities and talents. And seeing how many people were unhappy in what they were doing, I decided that perhaps life coaching might be the avenue for me to go. I then became board certified as a life coach and a hypnotherapist.

It is incredibly satisfying to me and I like to believe that for the most part, I walk my talk. That gives me an ability to really connect with clients and I like to go just a little bit deeper at times. I do incorporate the spiritual aspects, if my clients are open to it, because we’re holistic. We’re a whole being. We’re not just this or this or that. We’re psychological, emotional, spiritual beings and I try to incorporate all of those aspects in the coaching. It seems to work pretty well. I’m grateful for that.

Isn’t that all what we want? To feel like we’re relevant, that we’re loved, that we have something to give to the world to share? I think that’s where the real happiness comes from.

NCA: That is the satisfying and most rewarding side of the work you do. I’d also like to ask you, what have you found to be the most challenging aspect of the work that you do in working with clients through their challenges?

Michele: The most challenging part for me is I see that so many people do not realize or aren’t able to see initially the talents and the abilities that they have. People underestimate who they are. For me it’s challenging because I want so badly for them to see how unique they are because I truly believe everybody has something unique to share. It’s a little frustrating, but I know it takes time. It takes time for people to grasp some of the concepts that I share.

More importantly is having them come to the understanding themselves — coming to the awareness or the awakening themselves of how truly special they are. Everybody has something unique, something special, a gift to share with the world. That can be frustrating for me.

I’m really just a guide for my clients. A good coach asks the right questions. People are going to believe if it comes from them, their inner being, their inner self, their own evaluation of themselves more than my telling them. I could tell them over and over again, but until they truly can own that for themselves, it’s not going to make a difference in their life. You know how great it is when somebody really feels empowered. Isn’t that all what we want? To feel like we’re relevant, that we’re loved, that we have something to give to the world to share? I think that’s where the real happiness comes from.

NCA: Can you think of a mentor or a coach in your own career who was the most vital to your success and in what ways did this mentor help you thrive in your career?

Michele: There wasn’t any one individual. I’ve studied mainly Eastern philosophies and different teachers. Spiritually, I can think of Wayne Dyer and Deepak Chopra as mentors.

NCA: One of the most common challenges new coaches face is self-doubt. Some coaches call it Imposter Syndrome, where early on they feel somehow inadequate to take on the role of coach. What is one piece of advice that you would give to somebody who is in the beginning stage of their coaching career and dealing with these doubts in their mind?

Michele: I remember feeling so insecure in the beginning. I’d think, “Why would anybody listen to me and what I have to say?” Even though you learn techniques and you technically know what you’re doing, it goes beyond that. It’s not a cookie-cutter business. There are different ways of handling different situations and different people. Working with clients individually, you’ll get to know “Okay, this client needs more of this.” You might learn all of the techniques that you need to use, but not everybody’s going to use that exact technique.

There was a saying from Abraham Lincoln which may seem appropriate to life coaching: “You can please all of the people some of the time and some of the people all of the time, but you can’t please all the people all of the time.”

It takes a while. It takes practice for you to come into your own where you feel really comfortable and have the space that the right people are going to come to you. That’s why most coaches do an initial consultation on the phone; you want to make sure it’s the right fit for both of you.

Practice some of your own coaching on yourself and take some of your own advice. Becoming a great coach is like everything else in life. How do you get to Carnegie Hall? You practice, practice, practice. Just keep at it and have faith and always keep yourself fresh. I’m always reading different articles and educational literature to help keep me current and relevant in the field. Have patience with yourself and know that if you studied and love what you’re doing, it will all work out.

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