Packing My Suitcase: How Life Coaching Changed My Life

By Anna Gibson

A Note To The Reader: For my senior project I interviewed several other high school and college aged girls who have also had experience with life coaching. My blog is based on both my own personal experience along with the information that I gathered from these interviews.

Traditional therapy in the past has felt as if I have unpacked everything, left it on the table and not learned any helpful ways to manage the problems that I spent hours talking about. As I have been an individual that personally tried many therapists before I found coaching, I would always come out of it feeling frustrated and the same as I did before. I had this ongoing fight in my head that I was doing the work and open to do so, but I just felt as if my feelings were being validated without ever receiving the tools that I was so desperately looking to add to my toolbox. How was I supposed to fix my problems if I didn’t know the solution? Picture a suitcase filled with clothes, you unzip the suitcase, and dump the clothes on to a table, but you never learn how to fold and put the clothes away. In therapy I never learned how to fold and put my clothes away. Until I found coaching. Coaching offered me a tool box, a way to manage my mind, and a chance to learn how to put my clothes away once and for all. I have been in coaching since I was sixteen. I am eighteen now and can without a doubt say it has changed my life. Many of the tools I have learned and practiced over the years have been implemented in my life subconsciously. Whether I recognize it or not, I’ve been doing the work in my day to day life to learn how to put away my clothes properly. My tool box is forever growing as I continue to grow individually and work on myself. I feel more prepared to take on any challenges that I may face, which in the past, I would have run away from just two years ago. Coaching takes time, and can be applied to all areas of life whether that is at work, school, relationships, family or friends. The lessons you learn in coaching are endless. Although I will say with coaching you need to be prepared to do the work, you are digging deeper than surface level and getting to the root of whatever the challenge might be. Nothing is going to happen if you don’t do the work or are not ready to do so, show up and be the best version of yourself. Getting help is not a sign of weakness, it is actually a sign of how strong you are. Of course, once you are ready to get support, finding a life coach who can help teach you how to fold your clothes and then put them away, is so worth it.


  • Recognizing what I’m feeling and why without letting my feelings control me 
  • The awareness that everyone is fighting a battle that you know nothing about
  • Taking a moment to slow things down by using a simple process of managing my mind  
  • Knowing what I can control and what I can’t, controlling the controllables 
  • Reminding myself that I am not alone 
  • Failure is just another opportunity for learning. Accepting and leaning into failure as it comes  
  • Focusing on where my feet are right now
  • Using the Paradigm Shift tool 
  • Taking things one step at a time
  • Showing myself self compassion and love
  • Calming my nervous system down begins with slowing my breath down
  • Acceptance of what is  

A special thanks to Willsey Connections and all of the girls who were generous with their time and who were vulnerable enough to share their stories and experiences about life coaching with me for this blog. 

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