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Lesson 2: Living Abundantly From The Inside Out

By Kate Mrgudic, M.A.
Next Steps Coaching and Consultation Services

This is the second article on how coaching services can create opportunities to experiment, play, discover our strengths, and seek out areas in ourselves that are undeveloped or underdeveloped – places that we have not lived in yet.

Jody* contacted me about feeling stuck in her work.  She was 3 years out of graduate school and had been at her current job for 2 years.  She saw her job as a good first step but not what she envisioned as her career.  For the last year, Jody only thought about her next career move, with very limited action and subsequently few clear results.  She was frustrated and wanted a plan, a structure to help her work through the various issues related to a decision.  She also had a nagging feeling that pursuing what she wanted was “selfish.”

Through 5 months of coaching sessions, Jody and I created a structure and plan that helped her:

  1. To identify and act on a new career based on her deepest values and passions regardless of how others perceived or judged them (being “authentic” rather than doing the “right thing”);
  2. To increasingly notice and allow her emotions and develop confidence in using them as guides toward her new career path; and
  3. To develop and act on a structured approach that allowed specific activities through which she identified her values and passions and then analyzed, prioritized and made decisions based on them.

We developed metaphors to capture the energy of how she currently was living and the new way of being she was developing.  Metaphors often serve as powerful symbols  illuminating where you are currently and where you want to go.  They keep us focused on having clear intentions and giving attention to what is critical for results.

Her biggest learning surprise though is captured in this month’s LESSON TWO:  Our bodies and emotions provide critical information every day that can help us discover our strengths and improve our lives. Jody spent several weeks feeling and listening to her emotions and what her body was conveying, journaling briefly about her discoveries, and then sharing this new information with a trusted friend.  She now can discern between fear and excitement even though they “feel” similar in her body.  She used this new learning to trust her emotions and physical responses as guides in analyzing how her values matched potential career choices.


It’s an honor to do this level of self discovery with individuals.  I appreciate Jody’s willingness to try new things, her inquisitiveness, her intelligence and her deep sense of goodness and compassion.  I was able to offer a structure and safe environment for her exploration, insights that were illuminating to her, and support through uncharted territory.

One year later, Jody is in a new career path, one that is congruent with her values and passions.   Jody’s own words best speak to her experience:

“I find myself more and more grateful for the coaching I received from Kate everyday.  I sought coaching for career guidance, however I find myself using the skills and the vision that I gained from Kate’s coaching in everyday situations – far beyond my original objectives.  Kate’s approach not only imparted new wisdom, but facilitated a process of self-exploration that allowed me to identify my own strengths and abilities to approach problem-solving with confidence and clarity.  The process and experience was truly life changing.”

If you are interested in discovering your strengths and developing capacities that will sustain you over time, please call me at 213.434.0356 or email at: katemrgudic(at)gmail(dot)com.

Enjoy these last weeks of summer!

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