It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.
-- Alan Cohen
I have been a speech-language pathologist since 1996. I have worked in many different settings, and have had the privilege of being in private practice for the past 9 years. My passion for working with others also led me to become an integrative energetic bodyworker, incorporating the incredible modalities of craniosacral therapy, Polarity therapy and Reiki in my work. I have learned so much from each client, and continue to do so. As you have probably guessed, I am passionate about helping people. To me, the greatest gift of the work is seeing each person on their own extraordinary path, whole and complete regardless of the challenges they face. Over the years, as a speech therapist, this has placed me somewhat at odds with being in “fix it” mode, or the person who is supposed to have all the answers. Not to say that I don’t do my very best in planning treatment and targeting goals, but I felt something was getting lost in the mix. Mainly, the feelings a person may have about their communication disorder, and the fact that I was getting too focused on the “getting there”, rather than the journey. I know, I know, not exactly considered ok within the medical model, but as you can probably tell, I am an out-of-the-box kind of person. I guess on some level I was able to “go there” with a few of my clients, as several said to me, “You know what? You have helped me so much with my speech, but you’ve also helped me as a person. You should think about life coaching.” When I heard this, I thought “Yes!” But how?
Well, several years ago I discovered the work of best selling author and holistic life coach extraordinaire, Alan Cohen. In reading his books including “A Deep Breath of Life”, “I Had It All the Time” and “Are You as Happy as Your Dog?” (to name a few) and listening to his weekly radio show on Hayhouse radio, I was taken with his perspective, finding that it matched my own. Namely, that you are perfect as you are, and it is only the fear based self that keeps you in a place of self imposed restrictions. In listening to Alan coach people on his radio show, I saw that by validating and reframing people’s experience, they eventually found their own answers– in a very gentle, life affirming way. I would listen to Alan’s show again and again, marveling at how much relief people were getting in a short amount of time–and it all came from within! No one was “fixing” anything! I thought, “Wow, would I love to do that.” Lo and behold, Alan announced he was accepting students for his training program with the Foundation for Holistic Coaching. The first time I heard the announcement, I thought, “Maybe next year.” Then next year came around and I thought the same thing. In fact, each time Alan made the announcement for a new training, I would find excuses for not applying–not enough time, can’t leave work, I hate flying (the training was in Hawaii)-etc., etc. What was holding me back? Basically, a fear of not knowing where this would lead me personally and professionally. I finally jumped when listening to Alan’s show in May of 2014. “We have one more spot in our September training,” he enticed. At that moment I knew I had to get off the fence. I immediately went to his website, submitted my application and within several days got my acceptance notification. At that moment, I knew my life would never be the same.
This is a 6 month, certified coaching program. I began in September, have completed the core training and am in the midst of practice sessions. In a nutshell, holistic life coaching is a transformative yet gentle process for those willing to make a positive change in their lives and are open to the possibility that there is a larger force at work than what we perceive in our daily lives. It is partnering with clients so they may access their inner guidance to release self-imposed restrictions and ultimately achieve clarity around an issue (or issues) in their lives, be it personal, professional or spiritual. Yes, coaching is partnering–not fixing–and trusting in the client’s inherent wisdom. I have found this process to be freeing and gratifying, as it permits me to be fully present with each person, and in being present, remarkable things happen! So far, each person I have worked with has ignited their own light! And you know what? So have I. It’s not possible to do this work and have it be otherwise.
So what’s next? Well, I am certainly continuing with Bodylink Speech Therapy, and already see how coaching is enhancing my client counseling skills. I am also establishing a separate coaching practice which will include coaching for individuals, coaching for healthcare and wellness professionals and coaching for those with communication challenges who would like support while they face those difficulties. I am extremely grateful to be taking this journey, and will keep you updated regarding the next step.
If you would like further information about holistic life coaching and/or Bodylink Speech Therapy, please contact me at 212 727 2282 or firstname.lastname@example.org
About Monica Lowy
Bodylink Speech Therapy is a private speech therapy practice founded by Monica Lowy, M.A., CCC-SLP, TSHH, APP. Ms. Lowy earned a master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology at New York University in 1996 and has been a New York State licensed clinician for 16 years.