What are clients saying?
"Working with Susan has been a grounding yet uplifting experience. What I appreciate most about the Health Coach's strategy is the practical approach to changing personal behaviors. There is no fluff - just get down to business and enjoy all that life has to offer. Susan's considerate, pragmatic, and purposeful insight is worthy of anyone's time." -Boston, MA
"I wasn't really sure what to expect when we started, but compared to where I was, I'm definitely moving in the right direction! What helped me the most is that you asked those hard questions that I think mentally I was avoiding answering to myself."
Susan has a relaxed, straight forward approach to her coaching. She will help you to identify your health goals, get prepared, explore potential barriers and utilize your gifts. To use Susan's words, she will help you to "plant a seed", set yourself up for success and achieve your goals!
-Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Who can benefit from health coaching?
If you are constantly making New Year’s resolutions that never happen, feel a disconnect between where you are and where you want to be, or just feel stuck in a rut, health coaching could help.
If you want to learn how to better manage diabetes, high blood pressure, a newly diagnosed or existing chronic disease by making positive lifestyle changes, health coaching could help.
Coaching can help if you are dealing with:
Any chronic condition (diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease)
Stress, anxiety, worry
So how does health coaching work?
Health coaching is a partnership formed to help you take a good look at many aspects of your life that all contribute to your health and wellbeing. We start with an initial self-discovery session where we fully explore your goals, vision and values. Each week after that, you choose a focus and we delve deeply into it, exploring where you are, where you want to be, and figuring out how to move forward in a motivating, sustainable way.
Coaching provides an opportunity for you to collaborate with partner that is skilled in the science of behavior change and works with you to carve out the kind of optimal health you’ve envisioned. A coach is like a “personal trainer” except the focus will be on your whole self. Any concern that gets in the way of taking care of your optimal health is the perfect subject with which to begin coaching.
Is an integrative health coach like a therapist?
An integrative health coach is different from a therapist. Rather than discussing past events and their impact on your present self, an IHC is more focused on the present and moving towards the future by working on visioning, values and self assessment in an effort to set goals that work for you and your life. An IHC is often a member of a team, consisting of doctors, nutritionists, therapists and others.
What is mindfulness and how does it fit into coaching?
Mindful awareness is described as paying attention to the present moment without judgement, or more simply, being "in the moment". Mindful meditation is not a religious practice, it is not sitting cross-legged and attempting to clear your mind. It is not meant to eliminate thinking, but rather to help us look objectively at thoughts, feelings and emotions without getting dragged into the strong reactions. It allows us to look at our thoughts, see how one thought leads to the next and then affords us the opportunity to decide how to respond. This allows us to respond to a situation intentionally rather than habitually.
The practice of mindfulness has been wonderful in my interactions with my children. I am often multi-tasking throughout the day, and practicing mindfulness has shown me the ability to slow down and fully engage with my children. I am less likely to over respond to situations and it has decreased my stress and anxiety as well. It has affected many areas of my life!
In coaching, mindfulness allow us to take a deeper look at the how's and why's of our actions and habits. By truly understanding these, we are able to find lifestyle changes that are more meaningful, and thus more sustainable.
How often do we meet?
Everyone is able to receive a FREE 15 minute intro session to see if coaching is the right option for them and also to see if we will work well together. There are many different styles of coaching out there, and both you and I want to make sure the partnership is a good one. If you opt to continue with coaching, we decide on an appropriate package and schedule a self discovery session of 60 minutes. Followup sessions are 30 minutes long. The exact number and frequency of these sessions depends upon the package you purchase. Most clients opt for sessions every week over the course of 4-8 weeks to really get things started.
Where do the sessions take place?
All FREE 15 minute intro sessions are done over the phone. All subsequent sessions can be over the phone, Skype or in person. Until our new kitchen renovations are done at Richmond Community Kitchen, in person session can be held at the Richmond Free Library. I have also done coaching while walking, as sometimes change is easier to undertake once you are already moving!
What is expected of me?
Change is not something that can be done passively. I expect you to be present for our meetings and present in your life. I will be expecting a lot from you, but also wanting a lot for you. Optimal health is a journey rather than a destination. There will be frequent reassessing and rebalancing along the way. Before our first session, there will be some worksheets for you to fill out and before each follow up session, a few questions to think about.
Finally, this is not about what I think you should do or what your doctor thinks you should do, but what you want to do. Because it is only when you truly want something to change, that it will. If you are ready for a change, set up a free 15 minute intro session to see if I can help get you on a trail towards wellness.
“Your journey has molded you for the greater good, and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don't think that you've lost time. It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the now. And now is right on time.” -Asha Tyson
Susan Whitman PA-C, Duke Certified Integrative Health Coach
PO Box 718 Richmond, Vermont 05477
PO Box 718 Richmond, Vermont 05477