Wednesday, 13 February 2013

60 SECOND INTERVIEW: Nicole Willett

LIFE Coach Nicole Willett grew up in Bedfordshire and lived in various parts of the country before moving to Dorset. She has lived in Eype, near Bridport, with her partner for the last four and a half years and enjoys working with stained glass and learning the saxophone. Now aged 55, Nicole began life coaching two years ago.

WHAT is life coaching?
Sometimes change is forced on us for example by a sudden loss of employment or a relationship breakdown; at other times we initiate change ourselves. Life coaching is a process that can help us understand change, make positive changes, achieve our goals and get the most from our lives now and in the future.

DOES a life coach need qualifications?
Whilst there is no current official requirement to be qualified, I decided to study for a diploma in life coaching (Dip.LC) before setting up my own business. Prior to that I worked as a probation officer in various parts of the country and for the NSPCC in Dorset. This gave me a great deal of experience of working with different people on a wide range of issues.

IS LIFE coaching psychotherapy?
No, although both work with people and attempt to help them move on, they are different.  Psychotherapists often work with people where there have been past or present events or issues that have significantly affected them; they work in depth usually for an extended period of time. Life coaches tend to work with people for much shorter periods of time and whilst significant past events can be discussed to assist finding solutions for the present, they are not dealt with in the same depth. Some people will only need a couple of sessions of life coaching, others will need longer depending on the issues or what they want to achieve.

WHY do people need a life coach?
There are many issues that people want to discuss. They include changing job or job insecurity, financial difficulties, moving home, relationships, the stresses of bringing up children or looking after elderly relatives. Sometimes people have specific goals they want to fulfill; others may know they want to make changes but not be sure exactly what they want to do or how to go about it.

WHAT do people get out of sessions with a life coach?
My approach is to help people identify their goals and the possible obstacles to achieving them. I then help them think about how to overcome these obstacles and make plans for the present and future.  I use a positive and motivational style, tailoring sessions to individual needs. Appointments for individuals take place either at my home or at premises in or near Bridport. I always offer a free first appointment to help people decide if life coaching is for them and if they want to work with me.

ARE sessions always one-to-one?
No, I also offer workshops in the Bridport area (see dates at end of interview). 

ARE there age restrictions?
There is no upper age limit but the minimum age of my clients is 18. My view is that for children and young people there are a range of specialised services that would better suit their needs.

HOW did you get into life coaching?
Several years ago I read some interesting articles about life coaching and subsequently had a number of sessions with a life coach to find out more and to discuss a possible change of career. I found it very helpful to take time out from my daily life to work on issues with someone who was objective and supportive. 

WHO has most inspired you in life?
Lots of people have inspired me in different ways during my life including family members, friends and colleagues. Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese opposition leader who was placed under house arrest for two decades, is someone I have found inspiring because of her determination and courage to bring about change and to fight injustice, never losing hope in the face of personal danger.

WHAT do you think of self help books?
Self help books can be very useful in encouraging us to make changes e.g. to ourselves, our health, our relationships and our environment. I have found a number of self help books thought provoking over the years. However, I think we also gain another perspective from talking to and listening to others, whether this is someone we know or a professional. I think there is a place for both.

WHAT would your motto be?
Make the most of every day and don’t be afraid to try new things!

FAVOURITE place on earth?
Lots! Often it’s being in the camper van on a quiet campsite where there’s a sea view, lovely walks and cosy pub nearby.

WHO would you most like to see again?
I was close to all my grandparents but if I have to choose one then it would be my maternal grandmother. She was always kind and loving, ready to listen and encouraging.

Nicole’s next group life coaching sessions are:
‘Creating a Vision Board’ on Tuesday, 19th March 10am-11.30am, and again on Wednesday, 24th April, 7pm-8.30pm (£6 charge). A vision board is a fun, practical way to identify future hopes and plans, using images and words.
‘Building self- confidence’ on Saturday, 20th April, 10am – 1pm (£15 charge) 
‘Exploring my goals’   on Saturday, 18th May, 10am-1pm (£15 charge)
The Saturday workshops will use a variety of techniques, in a supportive environment, to help people make changes and move forward. 
For more info contact  or 0785 7961341 or visit

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