Skip to main content

Natural Awakenings Washington DC Metro

Coaching for a Lifetime of Health and Wellness

Jan 04, 2014 01:33AM
Ellen came to wellness coaching with a specific goal–she wanted to take her business to the next level. Before we started talking about how to boost her freelance writing business, I asked Ellen to complete the Wellness Wheel.

The spokes of the Wellness Wheel correspond to specific aspects of life, such as physical health, emotional well-being, relationships, career, spiritual fulfillment and recreation. Taken as a snap shot in time, the Wellness Wheel assesses where life is rolling smoothly and where there may be bumps in the road.

Ellen’s Wellness Wheel was well-inflated in many areas, including relationships with family and friends, work she enjoyed and a satisfying spiritual practice. She was less satisfied with her finances, physical health and the environments in which she lived and worked. After examining her Wellness Wheel, she saw that clutter and disorganization stymied her productivity. She decided to use our coaching sessions to discuss how her habit of hoarding and piling prevented her from achieving success as a freelance writer.

Insights from our coaching sessions inspired Ellen to clean out her attic, have a yard sale, shred old files and organize her work space. After a few months of focused housecleaning, Ellen arrived at one of our coaching sessions with an announcement–she had signed a contract to co-author a book. By taking care of unfinished business in one area of her life, Ellen literally and energetically made space to take her business to the next level.

People often hire a health and wellness coach with a specific symptom or goal. They soon learn that before they can make progress, they might need to focus on obstacles that keep them from being successful. The good news is that attention to one area of life ripples out to affect every other area. For Ellen, getting her physical environment in order freed up time and space for a lucrative project. For other people, changing the story they tell about themselves attracts a new romantic partner. Physical symptoms and emotional malaise may point to something that is missing, such as a creative outlet or spiritual connection.

Coaches who specialize in health and wellness come with different backgrounds and expertise. Some are accomplished physicians, nurses and therapists; others bring experience in business, education and the arts. What they share is a commitment to helping people live vibrant and empowered lives.

Like my health and wellness coaching colleagues, I operate with the premise that every person is whole, complete and resourceful. My clients do not need to be fixed, nor do they need me to tell them what to do. Coaching gets results because the individual takes charge, building on past successes and acquiring new skills and experience.

Ellen has a new focus for our coaching sessions these days. Buoyed by her professional and financial accomplishments, she is now ready to apply what she has learned to create a new relationship with food. Instead of dispensing advice and prescribing actions, I ask provocative questions to help her uncover her motivation for eating well and getting more exercise. I am there for her, shining a light on her successes and challenging her to take risks so that she can write a happy ending to her own life story.

Linda Mastro is a wellness coach, freelance writer and an instructor for the Health and Wellness Coaching Program at Maryland University of Integrative Health.

For more information, visit 


Global Brief
Health Brief