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Meet Gia Storms of Storms Coaching & Consulting in Silver Lake

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gia Storms.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Eight years ago, and when I was first introduced to coaching, I was rocked by a deep and instant calling to helping individuals and teams connect with their best possible lives. I was living in New York City at the time, climbing the corporate ladder and running communications teams in city government. I dismissed leadership and coaching as a career trajectory in favor of more “serious” pursuits.

When I finally moved out of New York City four years ago and its relentless, ambitious churn, I found myself in Los Angeles and ready to officially hang up my corporate, media, and government hats to seek a career that helps me light others on fire and walk forward to do the most courageous thing in their professional lives.

As the open landscape of California’s start-up culture worked its way into my psyche and an opportunity to re-examine coaching presented itself, I jumped at it, and have been thrilled and delighted answering the call to my life’s work ever since. Now it’s my turn to help others connect to their own calls to adventure, to their deep purpose and most courageous, confident life.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I have recently come to understand that my life purpose is to walk the invisible bridge to make it safe for others to follow. To walk the invisible bridge means to go forward, even if you would rather hang back and blend into the crowd. To walk into the unknown, trusting that the net will appear; to speak out and step forth, even when the path looks uncertain and the territory hostile.

This has not always been my story.

As a teenager, the mandate from my white, middle-class suburban upbringing was to blend in, and so I stood on the sidelines of lunchroom jeers, not-so-harmless gossip and the beginning of cyberbullying, always grateful to have the target shifted elsewhere, to keep my head down and avoid the scrutiny and humiliation of my peers.

In my twenties, I mastered the art of “waiting for the boss to promote me on my merit” – constantly desirous of the next career opportunity but chronically frustrated that my merits went under-acknowledged and my next steps were not handed to me on a silver platter. Despite having only a vague sense of what I really wanted, I was desperate for someone to come along and recognize my intrinsic value and lay out my clear career path. Trapped, helpless and somewhat entitled, I wondered: Who would rescue me and make clear how to manifest my professional destiny?

In careers today, most people I talk to wrestle with this feeling of disempowerment; shackled by the external circumstances – underpaying jobs, tyrannical bosses, financial burdens of dependents – that keep them from pursuing the scary dream or taking full charge of the journey.

Even more, cannot imagine what might lie beyond the ridge of the known, and so the safer choice becomes to stay on solid footing, inching our way forward and crossing our fingers that we will one day be rescued, recognized and rewarded.

But the cost of waiting is too high. As the stakes get higher in an increasingly complex world, as old institutions and old ways of being crumble, as more and more of us begin to answer a deeper call, it gets harder to ignore the thing inside of you that is calling for freedom.

A new era of courage is dawning.

My own journey into courageously stepping forth was marked by small, early acts of resistance: Shaving my head in college to better understand gender norms, initiating private, courageous conversations in and out of the workplace when I saw bad behavior from friends, and finally leaving the full-time job and pension behind to enter the vast unknown of solo-preneurship.

The truth is, bridge walking is a way of life. When your footing feels sure, and you call back to encourage others, you still know the next dodgy stretch to be just around the corner.

But the things worth doing are always those that scare us most; bridges are invisible to our egos but clear and real to our hearts and spirit. They call us forth to greater and greater heights, and to the purpose, we were put on this planet to fulfill.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
My courageous coaching program inspires clients to imagine their best lives and courageously take the action needed to make it happen. I push clients to shorten the distance between dreaming and doing, arming them with the tools and techniques to create meaningful, swift change in all areas of their lives.

Together, we dare to dream up the fullest expression of that best life – then take solid, direct steps to make it a reality. I work with clients to create the internal conditions for a life free from anxiety, stress, distraction, and self-destruction – in short, from the habits and patterns that sabotage progress and meaningful change.

As a professionally trained certified coach, I bring to my clients a take-no-prisoners ferocity developed in ten years working in politics and business. With energy and courage, I hold space for discomfort and exploration, incorporating visualizations, bodywork and goal setting.

My clients are leaders craving balance and meaning, creatives looking to take their careers to the next level, managers seeking tools to overcome resistance and make change happen now. I work with individual leaders and organizations in groups to build meaning, purpose, clarity, and connection in workplaces.

What were you like growing up?
I’ve been a hyper-achiever my whole life. Let me re-frame: I’ve had a hyperachieving saboteur my whole life. This particularly insidious, hamster-wheel of an inner critic has claimed energy and space in my life for as long as I can remember.

The activity (or inactivity), achievement, success, accolades or action I’ve done in a given period of time is never, ever enough. You know the one – acceptance to college? Could’ve done better. Quitting your job? Not half as brave as that one. Taking a pause to (horror) enjoy the end of the work day? Sweetheart, do you REALLY think you’ve earned it?

I remember at 12 years old bringing home in trembling hands a less than perfect score on a math test – my least favorite subject, and always a dogged fight to get passing grades – and my parents met me with hugs and understanding nods, even as I burst into inconsolable tears. I couldn’t let myself off the hook for being less than perfect.

This was the same year that I picked up a casual copy of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” – writing myself daily affirmations on my bathroom mirror – and solidifying my desire for a life long passion in leadership work to inspire people to change their thought patterns and limiting behaviors.

Through this self-directed work, I realized that being perfect was getting in the way of something that mattered more: courage and the feeling of aliveness. I began to take courageous steps forward – moving to New York City at eighteen, picking a major in feminist studies, doubling down on activism, taking six months to live abroad in France – that outpaced my old tendency of listening to my saboteur and making courageous change my new normal.

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