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Inspiring Conversations with Laurie Smith of Life Coaching with Laurie

Today we’d like to introduce you to Laurie Smith.

Hi Laurie, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
A year ago, I started seeing flashing lights in my right eye. I didn’t think it was anything serious, plus, I was overwhelmed with my private chef work. I was traveling a lot for one particular client who I loved, but the work was exhausting. On one of my trips, I noticed I started losing peripheral vision in that same eye, which alarmed me.

I had an eye exam two weeks later, but my eye doctor had to refer me to a specialist. Fast forward a week and I had to undergo eye surgery STAT! Turns out I had a tear in my retina and if I had waited much longer, I would have lost sight in my eye. Just like that, I had to stop working for six weeks. The worst part was that I had to recover facedown- 24/7- my neck was so sore. I couldn’t watch TV or read, I could only listen to audiobooks and podcasts.

It was during my recovery that I knew I needed to make a career change. I’d been cooking for over 20 years and felt like I had hit a plateau. A few months earlier, a friend had remarked that I’d make a good life coach. I didn’t know much about coaching, but I did some research and realized I had been coaching people my entire life.

I’ve always been obsessed with self-help books and loved doling out my latest discoveries to anyone who would listen. Not to say that is coaching, but my interest in personal growth meant people would share their struggles with me or they’d bounce ideas off of me because I was a good listener. I’m a big risk taker and loved encouraging people to bet on themselves.

I enrolled in an intensive coach training program that I logged into from the comfort of my home, albeit with an eye patch. I completed the program at the tail end of my recovery and have been working with clients on a part-time basis since.

Like any business, it takes time to find your people and figure out how to best serve them. Some of my favorite clients have been creative people who are real go-getters but needed help getting to their next level of success by working through some limiting beliefs and shifting their mindset. Others wanted help creating more balance in their lives and needed permission to put themselves first and to pursue new interests.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I’ve been self-employed for the past 10 years, so I had to learn how to interact with clients and how to stand up for myself. It took me a while to understand that it’s not just about making the client happy, I needed to be happy too. Everybody we interact with is a relationship and now I’m very particular about who I will work with. I believe that your greatest contribution to society is your happiness. It’s simple, but not.

We’ve been impressed with Life Coaching with Laurie, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
One of the tenets of coaching that I love is empowering clients to discover their answers within, which requires people to trust themselves. Trust with anyone- including ourselves- takes time, but it can be learned and cultivated. Once you start trusting yourself, you’ll start listening to your inner voice and understand what you really want. Then you can decide what’s in your best interest without other people’s opinions getting in the way.

I love working with people who are interested in their soul line versus goal line. What I mean by this is working on recurring themes or issues that you know are holding you back instead of focusing on a fixed outcome. Some common examples are people pleasing, finding your voice, enforcing boundaries and more broadly, money mindset. For me, soul line work comes first and is what aids you in achieving external goals.

Every person is different, so I create different plans and packages for each client based on what they want to accomplish and their time commitment. When people work with me, they are entering into an honest and transparent relationship where they can be themselves without judgment. It usually takes a couple of sessions to determine if we’re a good fit. I only charge people when we’ve both signed an agreement to work together, in partnership.

What quality or characteristic do you feel is most important to your success?
I’d say resilience and a sense of humor go hand-in-hand. If you’re going to persist, you need laughter to keep your spirits up. How else could I have survived working in restaurants?

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