I enjoy coaching because of the deep connection built with my clients, the trust generated in partnership, and the impact created in their lives. Yet what is even more compelling and has made me dedicate my life to coaching is that it simply works! How do I know? Coaching absolutely changed my life and it continues to do so. I want to share that gift with others.
Thinking back the past two years, the biggest transformation I’ve experienced from coaching is breaking my limited belief. When I first joined Accomplishment Coaching, I had so much doubt in my mind and I had no clue whether (and how) this would work out. Do I have enough knowledge? Do people trust me? Am I asking the right questions? Am I smart enough? Etc. etc. etc. Comparison and self-judgement were constantly showing up in my mind.
Yet my biggest fear was related to my work visa. The visa is sponsored by my firm and must be in the field in which I have a degree. This means I can’t stay in the States if I quit my job unless another company sponsors me for work in the fields of accounting, audit and consulting. A much more flexible and permanent option for me would be a green card. My firm started the application process, but for Chinese citizens the waiting period is six years. I felt extremely powerless. I blamed the system for not giving fair treatment to people who are doing great work. I envied my friends who are from different countries, or applied green cards through the expedited process as they are exceptional researchers and scientists. Furthermore, I questioned my decision of joining the coaching program and spending so much time and money into something that I can’t even do. Worst of all, my inner critics were yelling at me: what is wrong with you? Why do you want to do this? You have a stable job with decent salary and why do you want to risk it all? Why couldn’t you get settled?
Fear showed up as resistance to coaching. I was like the little kid who got her favorite candy after a long wait but was too stunned to even try it. Coaching was fascinating for me, but I couldn’t stand the excitement, joy, uncertainty and potential heartbreak of this new path. What if I turn out to like coaching? What would I do? I can’t both stay in the US and coach. I felt like a complete victim and there was no way out: if I stay out of coaching I would have to continue with the firm and do work I don’t enjoy; if I commit to coaching and find out that it is indeed my calling, I would have to endure the pain of not being able to do what I love. I was not sure which was worse.
Throughout the course of the coaching program and endless conversations with my coach, I started to accept the irrefutable facts about the immigration system and my current situation: they are what they are and I simply can’t change them. However, I can still design my life and choose from my heart. Most importantly, I have learned to accept myself as who I am, acknowledge my need, and choose the life I want to live. Yes, I am this weirdo who desires more than a look-good-on-paper job, a fancy title, and a bonus. Yes, I aspire to make an impact on other people in the world and really contribute something positive to society. Yes, I want to travel, explore and experience all the beauty of nature and people. It is different from what my parents want my life to be, and from what my friends want for their own lives. It might be hard for them to fathom, but this life choice is mine, and it aligns with who I am and what I value. It sounds simple, but it took a great deal of effort to get there. I learned to set aside my own right and wrong judgment, to empower my intuition and wisdom, and to create the future I want.
From the place of trust and possibility, I designed my future: living in a diverse city and doing what I absolutely enjoy. From the place of partnership and love, my husband and I decided to move to Toronto, Canada in service of my coaching business and what he wants to create for himself and his career. We applied for permanent residency in Canada and got approval shortly after. We are in the process of finalizing our work and transitioning to a new chapter in our lives.
What we have created and are moving towards are beyond my wildest dream. Circumstance might constrain certain options; emotion might run high to keep me safe from the unknown; yet I can still choose to believe in my inner knowing and take actions to make my dreams come true.