An Interview with Krista Giffin, Life Coach

KristaWhen I moved to New York City six years ago I lived with Krista Giffin right above Central Park. We only lived together for a short time but I still remember the great advice she gave me about dating. No wonder she’s a successful life coach now. You can check out her website, or follow her on Facebook. She is generously offering a FREE 60 minute life coaching session to the first thirty people who reach out to her! The beautiful and talented Krista is telling us about her journey. The field of life coaching seems to have exploded in the last few years. It seems like people are either really receptive or really skeptical  about it. What would you say to someone who’s skeptical of life coaching?

We all have patterns that we have created over time in order to succeed in this world. Much of it is from our childhood, where it suited us. Often a certain way of doing things is the very thing that keeps us stuck.  A life coach truly listens and reflects what they hear back to the client as well as posing dynamic questions to open up the client’s views on life.  If you’re skeptical, do your research.  Find people who have used coaches and see what they have to say, or try out different coaches. I often offer complimentary sessions as a way for people to get to know me and my coaching style.  I have been trained in ontological coaching, which is about how who you are being, affects the way things happen for you in the world.  It’s easier to grasp once you’ve tried it out.  Another great comparison is this: Many people work out on their own, but if you hire a great personal trainer, you are going to get results that much faster.  Coaching offers speed and velocity toward your dreams, but you still have to be committed to doing the work.

What got you interested in life coaching?

My step-mother passed away from cancer and I think it had to do with her stressful job, which made it harder for her to overcome her disease. We spend so much time at our jobs so they should be fulfilling. I have always been a HUGE believer in having a job you love. The important question is, “Does your job give you what you need?”  I had already been encouraging people to do what they love and to find a way to make things work for them in their lives and careers. At the same time, I was looking for a career that could blend my passion for acting with my background in teaching but could also be location independent because I’d like to see my family more often.  (They’re on the West Coast and I’m in New York).  This seemed like the perfect marriage.

Wow, you really created a career that blends your talents and gives you the lifestyle you want. Have you faced any challenges while coaching?
Getting people to believe in themselves is a challenge. Everyone has fears and doubts about themselves and their abilities, but we are far more powerful than we imagine. So much is possible, but it’s easy to shift back into our old ways of thinking and become dejected if we are not mindful. Once people understand their power they can truly create anything they want in life.  It’s a mind blower!
What is most rewarding about coaching?
Every step forward for my clients is rewarding for me. I love hearing about their lives, seeing all the different, cool, exciting things that people are doing, feeling their struggles, and recognizing we are all so similar. I love when they break through and really start to feel powerful on their own. I get so much from my clients.
Is there a particular area of life coaching that you’re drawn to?
I love working with people to get clear on what they want out of life.  Clients I’ve worked with have come to me with career issues, such as finding what they love to do or getting themselves organized and focused so they can run their businesses better. Clients have also come to me with relationship issues like getting married or getting the marriage they already have to the place where it truly supports and enriches their life.  My forte is getting people to make fun, relaxation and pleasure a priority, which helps them to achieve other things they want in life. 
In your opinion, what’s the difference between seeing a therapist and seeing a coach?

Coaching and therapy can work in conjunction with each other, but there is definitely a separation. Therapy works on healing trauma from the past.  It’s important to see a therapist and get yourself to the place that you feel well and whole. Coaching is future based. We take actions in the now with the future in mind. Occasionally we’ll look backward for a pattern, but we don’t stay there. Another great way to look at it is when you injure yourself, you may need to go to a physical therapist to heal that injury.  Once the injury is healed you can see a coach to move on to the Olympics.

What is your favorite piece of advice?
I have two. The first is meditate.  And I don’t follow it enough.  It’s very easy to become unfocused and distracted in today’s society, which leads to not listening to each other, break downs in relationships, and running around on our little hamster wheels.  It’s important to quiet our minds in some way in order to listen to our inner voice.  All of the answers are in there, but we need to slow down enough to listen.
The second is have fun!  So often we end up doing, doing, doing, work, work, work.  Take time out for yourself to have fun, play with your kids, watch a comedy, dance, spend time in nature, go on a date, get a massage, take a vacation.  These things fuel us and will make us more productive in the long-term, and just make life more enjoyable in general.  That in and of itself is worth it!
I could definitely benefit from some meditation. Thank you so much, Krista, for your wise words and your generous offer for a free 60 minute life coaching session. Anyone who would like to take Krista up on her offer should follow her on Facebook, and send her a private message.