Jennifer Trask, Mindset Coach and Business Advisor for Coaches and Healers, pretty much started her coaching career by accident.
“I really believe if you have a dream in your heart you have the capacity to make it happen,” says Jennifer.
“We’re not meant to suffer. Life is supposed to be fun, and I’m not negating that sometimes real life can be tough, because it can. But I think people are suffering too much and it’s not necessary – it’s more of a mind game. Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.”
She pauses a moment before continuing. “It’s not what happens to you, it’s what you do about it.”
Like all of us, Jennifer has had pain and struggle in her life, and one of the things she’s doing about it is using the lessons she’s learned to help coaches figure out how to break through the pain or mental/emotional barriers holding them back, so that they can then help others.
As a coach, one of the most important lessons Jennifer has learned is that people, herself included, struggle with discovering who they really are, becoming okay with that, and putting that out into the world.
”That sounds very simplistic,” says Jennifer, “but in reality it’s a messy process.” A process she needed to go through in order to coach others. “You can only take someone as far as you’ve gone,” says Jennifer.
Before she could help others find themselves and their voice, she had to discover her own.
That journey wasn’t a direct path.
After University, Jennifer spent a year travelling in Australia, came home to Newfoundland to work in her family’s business, then decided it was time to get a real job.
She moved to Calgary to be a sales rep for L’Oréal, and within six months had the job down pat. Ready for something new, she asked her boss what it would take to get into a marketing position. He started pointing at the areas in the office.
Realizing she’d have to spend five years in five different jobs doing things she didn’t want to do, just to get a job she may not like, Jennifer rethought her goals.
She returned to school to get an MBA and, while there, a mentor suggested she go to an event called ‘The Power Within’.
When Tony Robbins stepped onto the stage, within seconds Jennifer knew her life would never be the same, because she finally knew what she was meant to do with it: help people transform. Help them be happy.
“There are so many ways to do that,” says Jennifer, “but I’ve always loved speaking and was never afraid of it … the bigger the crowd the better.”
With this overarching purpose in place, Jennifer made a list of five main things she wanted out of her life and career. 1) To help as many people as she could, 2) make as much money as she could, 3) be location independent, 4) love what she does (so she never works a day in her life), and 5) be her own boss.
In 2008, she started her first Network Marketing business and thought she’d found the answer to her life’s goals.
But it was just one step on the road to her real destination.
“I learned so much about coaching,” says Jennifer, “because the top network marketers are the best coaches.”
While in that position, she also focused on personal development, social media marketing, and internet marketing.
With this knowledge in place, Jennifer started leading social media workshops and consulting, which quickly transitioned into working as a marketing consultant.
A few years into this work, Jennifer realized she was making more money in her side gig as a marketing consultant than in her Network Marketing business.
So she made a switch.
Shortly after, it came time to transition her focus again.
“I noticed some people were paying me to tell them what to do and they weren’t doing it,” says Jennifer. “It didn’t make any sense. “ She needed to find a way to make sure her clients actually made use of the teaching they were paying her for.
That’s when she fell into coaching.
One of her favourite clients was a life coach. “I loved the idea that I would help a lot of people by helping her,” says Jennifer. “It was like magic working together.”
Which wasn’t the case with some of her other clients. Jennifer felt stretched trying to keep up to date with trends in a variety of industries so decided to niche down and focus exclusively on helping clients who were focused on helping people lead better lives.
She became a coach to coaches.
Most coaches aren’t entrepreneurs to start, so Jennifer helps them become the people they need to become in order to run a company that gets results.
“They may or may not be used to being a leader and a visionary and superbly brave and courageous on a consistent basis,” says Jennifer.
So, she helps them strip away those limiting beliefs and inner-conflicts to access the courage hidden within. “It’s almost like watching a flower begin to flourish,” says Jennifer.
First though, she needed to witness this flourishing within herself.
“If you plant a flower,” says Jennifer, “within the seed it has everything: it has the petals, it has the fragrance, the leaves … but right now it’s just a seed.”
When she began her coaching business, she was a seed. “The process of growing and flourishing into the person who I knew I could become was the biggest struggle,” says Jennifer.
It was an unleashing of herself, and everything she already had inside her but couldn’t always see.
Now that she’s done that work, she’s confident in guiding her clients to do it for themselves.
“The inner work is the scary work,” says Jennifer, and it’s not always pretty. “People avoid it as much as they can.” They try to get band-aid solutions for internal problems, but, says Jennifer, “happiness is an internal game.”
She adds that no amount of money or professional success can bring happiness until people have found it on their own. “I really don’t think a lot of people are doing that for themselves and that’s why they’re not happy,” says Jennifer, “you feel trapped in someone who is not you.”
But once you give yourself permission to be yourself, it’s freedom.
Not that it’s a one-time fix, of course.
Throughout her years as a coach, Jennifer has had the standard breakdowns, wondering if she should quit, or just go get a ‘real’ job. But when it comes down to it, she knows this is her calling.
“I’m very big on following the call,” says Jennifer. “I do a lot of things normal people wouldn’t do.”
If you’d asked her fifteen to twenty years ago what her life would have looked like today, she’d have said she’d travel the traditional path of marriage, kids, a house, and a corporate career.
“I’m the complete opposite,” says Jennifer. She’s a proud aunt. She owns her own business. She trots around the world. “Who would have known it?” she says with a laugh. “I wouldn’t change anything.”
Jennifer listened to her inner guidance to live this life she’s living and she encourages her clients to do the same. A lot of times it doesn’t look like the normal, sane thing to do – it seems like the opposite, and so people may call you crazy, says Jennifer.
But, she adds, “Nobody knows what’s better for you than you … When you listen to your inner guidance it’s sort of like the universe saying this is the fastest path you have – go, go, go!”
Are you a coach ready to accelerate your business while giving your clients your best? Check out Jennifer on her website, where you can get The Ultimate Coaching Business Checklist + Video Series plus her Top 18 MUST HAVE Tools List or, visit her on Facebook.
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