#87: The Work I’m Most Proud Of

The Work I’m Most Proud Of

Many of my clients have gone on to start their own career in health and wellness, and through the years I’ve spent more and more time supporting health coaches with business and marketing. Today I’m chatting with Katie Cooper, who had wonderful results years ago as a private client. Today she’s a certified health coach herself, working with healthcare professionals.

I didn’t know it when I recorded this interview, but as it turns out, this is the final episode of She’s Got Power. It’s a fitting episode as I transition to focusing solely on helping health coaches build their businesses. Thank you so much for listening. If you’re a health coach, check out my Health Coach Power Community podcast and social media accounts.

You’ll hear about:

  • Why Katie started working with me, and how she transitioned from being an occupational therapist to a health coach for healthcare practitioners
  • How she found a company that allows her to grow and expand and that values her work
  • The type of person Katie thinks can most benefit from coaching
  • The innovative way in which she is working with healthcare professionals, covering topics from nutrition to ending the stress cycle to being in tune with your body’s needs
  • The benefits being in community with people going through something similar
  • Katie’s advice if you feel like you’re struggling and not sure what kind of support you need

Mentioned in this episode:

For health coaches:

Michelle (00:02):
It is time to stop being the victim of your overscheduled life and become the most powerful version of yourself. Welcome to She's Got Power.
Michelle (00:13):
You'll have to excuse my voice today. I am still recovering from the flu, but feeling much better. And today is an important episode. You can't be afraid of change because on one hand you can't avoid it. You know change is gonna happen whether you like it or not. My whole career as a health coach began in earnest the day that I got laid off from my job in advertising. The interview that I recorded for today's episode is also about change. Katie Cooper is one of the hundreds and hundreds of clients that I've worked with over the past 13 years. She is a perfect example of changing your life for the better and how it allows you to then show up more powerfully for everyone else. It struck me after recording this, that this is the most powerful kind of work. It's what I'm most proud of.
Michelle (01:12):
So many of my clients have turned around and taught their families to eat better or brought their friends to my events back in the day when I would hold things in person. The detoxes I used to do, or more recently with everything online. Interestingly, Katie is definitely not the only client I've had who has gone on to become a health coach herself. In fact, over the last 13 years, a huge proportion of my time and energy has gone towards helping other health coaches to enroll in the right school to find their first clients, to get their businesses off the ground. I'm gonna tell you that background in advertising Sure has come in handy. So I've been thinking about how by myself, yeah, I've been able to help hundreds and hundreds of clients get healthier and happier and more powerful, which is good. But through this group, this army of health coaches that I've mentored, I have nearly 13,000 in my Health Coach Power community Facebook group.
Michelle (02:21):
And as of this recording over 300,000 downloads of my Health Coach Power Community podcast. Even if all of those coaches helped just one client, the number of lives touched becomes quite staggering. At the end of this episode, I'm gonna share ways for us to stay in touch if you've been a loyal listener or if you're a health coach yourself. And so many of my listeners are at this point because this is the final episode of She's Got Power. As a segue into putting my full attention on the other side of my business, helping health coaches, let's get into Katie's story, which by the way, at the time I did not know was going to be my last episode, but it does feel like the perfect note to end on.
Michelle (03:17):
Hey Katie, thanks for joining me
Katie (03:19):
Today. Thanks for having me, Michelle.
Michelle (03:21):
It's like a blast from the past. I mean, we met each other. What feels like a lifetime ago, we were just chatting before I hit record and we think it was 2017,
Katie (03:31):
I think. So, yeah, if memory serves me, which you know, being a mom, my memory's not the greatest, but
Michelle (03:38):
, it had to have been about them. That sounds right to me. And can you remember like what was going on in your life and maybe even how, like how did we even cross paths in the first place?
Katie (03:49):
So I had been following you for a couple years. I had a yoga teacher who I think went through I I n with you around the same time. So she was like sharing some of your posts on Facebook. So then I started following you and then I think I took one of your like five day challenges where you offered your health coaching program at the end. And I remember sitting with my mom and I was like, mom, I'm just so tired. Cuz I was a new mom. I had a almost two year old at the time and I just didn't feel myself. I couldn't lose the baby weight. I was exhausted all the time. Just felt like I couldn't pinpoint what was going on, but I just didn't feel healthy. And I was like, I have to do something. And so I just, everything you said was like, yes, that's what I need. So I signed up and it was amazing. .
Michelle (04:44):
And had you done anything else, I wondered like, cause a lot of times if we were feeling exhausted, we don't feel healthy, like there's a trip to the doctor. Had you gone any other avenues first?
Katie (04:53):
So I had, I think I was starting to see a doctor getting blood work done. I had been playing around with my diet, you know, I had been breastfeeding, I think we were just finishing up and during that period I had eliminated dairy for my daughter and then I had added it back in. And so I was like, oh, maybe I need to make some dietary changes again. So I was just kind of like dabbling. I wasn't really making any significant changes yet.
Michelle (05:22):
Right. Like if your arm was broken, you would have known, I need to go to the emergency room, they need to set my arm, I need a cast. Yes. But when you're just like all over tired and blah and just don't feel like yourself, it's like who is the specialist for
Katie (05:36):
That? Exactly. Yeah. Th there really isn't a specialist. You could go to like five different doctors and they'd all give you different advice and
Michelle (05:44):
They probably all say you're fine because,
Katie (05:46):
Michelle (05:47):
Yeah. There's nothing blatantly, you know, bleeding or, you know mm-hmm. your head is still attached to your body, so you're fine.
Katie (05:53):
Yes, exactly.
Michelle (05:55):
And I know that since then you've changed locations. You've changed careers. So just paint a picture for about where you were then and what you were doing.
Katie (06:03):
So at that time I was an occupational therapist. We were living out in Colorado and we decided, you know, we wanna expand our family and we needed to be closer to like our parents, which were back in New Jersey. So we relocated, got new jobs, I'm still working in the healthcare field, but through the pandemic I hit another point of like just severe exhaustion, burnout, overwhelming stress. And I just once again, kind of hit this point where I'm like, I have to do something. I have to get my health back in order. I need to take care of myself. And instead of getting another health coach, I was like, you know what? I'm gonna just enroll in Health Coach school because I wanna dive deeper. I wanna know more of the science and get nerdy and dig a little deeper about why I do the things I do or at least should do. And as I was going through that process, it's like every healthcare worker needs this right now. We all need a coach to get us through this super challenging time. And at that point we were like a year and a half until the pandemic, you know, it was just overwhelming. So now I, I am doing health coaching for healthcare practitioners. I'm building like a corporate wellness program to help them within my organization just to support them, make them feel healthier, happier, manage their stress, and just be on that journey with them.
Michelle (07:37):
Yeah. And I recall you having a certain level of, well I suppose you were just tired overall, but you had a certain level of the, about your job at the time mm-hmm. and there's some back and forth about is this really what you wanna be doing? And Yes. Can you talk a little bit about how you were feeling when we first started working together and maybe what you see among others in the health healthcare industry now?
Katie (07:58):
Yeah, I mean our jobs are super stressful and challenging. You know, people come to us wanting to feel better and they offload a lot onto us. So it can be a very challenging job. And we're not the greatest at taking care of ourselves. We're really good at giving to others, but maybe not giving to ourselves and and doing the things to, you know, take care of our health and wellbeing. And so at that time, back when I worked with you, I was definitely not working with the client population. That was my favorite clientele. So I wasn't really passionate about it. I was in a workplace that wasn't the most supportive either. So that was really challenging when I moved, I looked for a job where I knew I would be supported and that I would have the growth that I wanted. And you know, it's a company that's wor willing to innovate and try new things, which is why I can, can now come to them as a healthcare or a, as a health coach. Mm-hmm. and expand my role with them and kind of grow myself as well. And that has been really powerful to go from a company where maybe I wasn't as valued to now I can really grow and expand my horizons within a company that I enjoy working for.
Michelle (09:18):
Oh, we love that. Yeah. And it's something that's hard to find, which is why so many of us strike out on our own, start our own businesses. But I'm glad you found a place that values you and like you said, is willing to innovate. And I, and I wanna talk more about what you're doing with them, but um, if we go back, so you were feeling blah in your career. Mm-hmm. , you're feeling blah in your body and your energy and everything. We worked together for a couple of months and I mean, it was a long time ago. I don't expect either of us to remember the specifics, but I do remember you saying at one point that you went into work and your boss was like, wow, you look great. Mm-hmm.
Katie (09:51):
. Yeah. Do you remember that? Yeah. It was like all the inflammation was gone and I was just feeling good and you know, I, I had energy again. Amazing. But I still remember a lot of the stuff you told me, Michelle, like it's still like every once in a while I think of something you said, which is it, it was so impactful working with somebody who understands you and like you were there just for me that hour we had together every couple weeks, that was like so meaningful to have somebody just listen to me and hear what I was saying and then support me in making the changes that I needed to make. I remember our first session at the end, you're like, your homework is to go buy bras that are not nursing bras .
Michelle (10:36):
Oh, isn't that funny? Yes. I, I can remember that now ,
Katie (10:40):
You know, and it's those little things that make you feel so much better, but sometimes you need that push, you know, to like go do it. Just do it.
Michelle (10:49):
, I mean, would you ever have thought that putting yourself in bras that fit in bras that did not latch at the top and have everything to do with your baby could make an impact on your health?
Katie (10:59):
No, not before that. But then, you know, it was, you know, I made a whole day out of it, you know, I was, my husband had the baby, I went to the mall, which I hadn't been by myself to a mall in years at that point, you know, it was just, it was an experience and it really felt like, oh I am okay, I'm on this journey. I'm gonna do something for myself today.
Michelle (11:19):
Yeah. It doesn't sound like rocket science, you know? And, and it's mm-hmm , it's not in a way, but the magic is in that listening cuz how often do we have someone that like sits down really listens and doesn't have their own agenda that they're trying to push Exactly. At the same time. Like a spouse or a sibling or a parent who's all trying to, you know, also talk about their stuff at the same time. Who do you think can most benefit from coaching? And I don't even know the answer to this, so I'm curious what you think. Is it a woman who just really has no clue what she's doing in life? She's kind of all over the place. She's not really settled in any area of her life she needs direction. Or is it someone who's like, yep, I got my stuff together, I know what I have to do and yet it's not happening and yet I can't get to that next, you know, level or get to how I think I should be feeling in this life. I guess I'm asking about type A women and maybe more type B or something to that effect. But who do you think benefits most?
Katie (12:17):
I mean I think they both benefit most, but those type A go-getters who feel like they're just like constantly turning the wheel and like not getting where they want to be, they're gonna benefit because they're gonna put the work in and maximize the results because they, you know, sometimes you just need someone to like help you figure out the right mindset or like the next steps to take and kind of clarify it and then know that you have that support to kind of get you there. You know, the first woman you described can also benefit significantly from it, but maybe wouldn't put the, the effort or get to that end result as quickly. You know, they're gonna have different journeys,
Michelle (13:00):
They're definitely have different journeys. And I guess just being the person that I am, like we really clicked, I tend to click with women who are like, okay, I made a spreadsheet or also I color coded this spreadsheet. And I'm like, yes you are my people because you're gonna, you know, you're gonna hear yourself say out loud and I'll just use that example. I'm sure I didn't pull out of the the sky, this idea that you needed new bras, right? But you must have said something to the fact that you were still wearing your nursing bras. Right? So just in like voicing what's going on and then having someone reflect it back to you, you're like, oh yeah, like , that makes sense. And you went and you got it done and that was just one of, you know, many things that transpired through the co course of working together.
Katie (13:46):
Absolutely. Yeah. It was a wonderful experience.
Michelle (13:49):
That's so cool. I mean the coolest part for me is that the journey continues, right? It's not like, okay, we worked together for a few months and Katie feels better and she's lost some weight and people are noticing the end, right? It's like, okay, now you're on a slightly different path. So we talked about how that led you to finding a job where you were better supported and you really sought that out. You went back to school. Mm-hmm. tell us today, how are you feeling? What are you doing? Like what has been the ultimate transformation since 2017?
Katie (14:22):
Yeah, I think the biggest thing for me is I now know when I'm kind of hitting that wall before it's too late. You know, like I can kind of put the brakes on and and step back when I need to. And I think my husband and my kids are better for it too, cuz I'm a better partner, I'm a better mom. I, I can be present with them and also be present with work. Like I can bow, I can do both, you know? And of course it's not perfect, you know, it's never gonna be perfect. It's always, I'm always working on things but I'm more aware of my body and when things need to be adjusted,
Michelle (15:05):
That's an amazing skillset. If everyone on earth simply had what you just said, the ability to pay attention to their body. Wow. Like yeah we viewed a very different place and you would have workplaces that were more accommodating and understanding and supportive and it would, this whole, you know, ripple effect, it would really be a different world. So now that you're able to balance all these things, and I know you're still working full-time in uh, the healthcare field. Tell us what you are doing with this innovative company. Cause it's pretty exciting from what you've told me so far that they're willing to start bringing some of this to their employees.
Katie (15:43):
Yeah, so what we started with is a, um, small group program. So I have 10 clinicians at a time. We meet six times over a couple months and we just cover different topics, stress management, nutrition, different ways to end the stress cycle. And
Michelle (16:02):
You know, I love that topic.
Katie (16:04):
I know you do. I just listened to your podcasts the other day. It was great. . Yeah. So I, I kind of cover different topics and then we have a lot of discussion on, you know, how can you incorporate small changes over time? And honestly the topics are great and the participants love it, but what they are loving even more is having a community of similar-minded people who relate to their experience and what they're going through and the challenges of our work and our job. And that has been so meaningful to them to just know I'm not alone in this feeling and in these struggles. And then we have this nice supportive community where we can chat in between sessions and give each other support and ideas. And it's been really exciting. We're about halfway through so you know, we'll see how it ends up and if we can grow the program going forward. But it's just been really exciting to see how everyone's experience has been so far.
Michelle (17:06):
I think it's a great idea. I mean I have had so many clients that came from my advertising days, people I used to work with or friends of people who, you know, also were from advertising. And it's not to say that you know, only people in your industry are ever going to understand you, but there are nuances in different industries and although, you know, you came from a, you know, you were not from the advertising world, I think I have a lot of clients who come from male dominated industries or very stressful industries, industries where you are expected to work perhaps more hours than is reasonable or you know, there's this extra strain on many of my clients. So it's not surprising to me that when you have a group of people who are, are all in the same company and in the same field, they're really able to relate to you and to each other. And there's like these maybe inside jokes or like I said nuances. Yeah. To your particular experience that, that makes the coaching probably go farther and more impactful for them.
Katie (18:08):
Yeah, it's, the group mindset is just amazing to watch. You know, we have seven groups going right now and I Wow. Yeah, I didn't, I didn't sort people into the groups based on like, you know, their age or their stage of life or anything like that. It was based on what time worked for their schedule basically. Sure. But it just worked out that like one group is a group of all moms of toddlers or babies and they all have the same struggles and the same experience going going on and they keep saying like, it's just so great to talk to all their moms in this field and have this experience. It's just been, it's been really great to be a part of that.
Michelle (18:49):
Well I know we probably have some women listening who are maybe in HR at their own company or maybe they're not in HR but they work for various corporations and they're like, we need something like this. So I want them to be able to find you. I mean, are you, I don't know if you're even ready to bring this to other companies, but maybe in the future.
Katie (19:09):
Yeah, definitely. I would love to expand it and help as many people as possible cuz it's, it's so needed in our field.
Michelle (19:18):
Agreed. So where would be the best place for someone to go if they were interested in even just talking to you about how something like this started and what they could possibly do in their own workplace?
Katie (19:28):
My website is katie cooper wellness.com and all my contact information is there.
Michelle (19:34):
I'm like overflowing with pride right now. , you're, you're not the first. You're definitely not the first. I've had quite a few clients who then go on to go to school to become a health coach or go to school to become a fill in the blank holistic wellness practitioner. And it's, it, it's such a cool journey to watch, you know, from the outside and just see you kind of like come out of your cocoon and grow your wings and now you're doing your, you're teaching what you needed to learn. You're te we all are, we're all teaching what we need to learn, but for you to take it, use it within your yourself and now spread it to the world. I could not be prouder of you.
Katie (20:14):
Oh, thank you Michelle. It's been so exciting to like, reconnect with you and just relive kind of the journey that I've been on myself as well. Cuz it's not easy, right, to make these changes and to work on yourself, but it's so rewarding and like to get to this point where now I'm helping others is just, I've always been in that field where I help people, but to now help my fellow coworkers is just super amazing and it's been so great to re to reflect on that with you.
Michelle (20:45):
You were, you know, and so, so many women are at a point where it feels like you're pushing the boulder up the hill. Yeah. And I think the most, the pivotal point was where you said like, I need outside support. Because from there on it feels like everything was a little bit more smooth sailing. Now you're skiing downhill and you're finding your way, you know, through the trees and everything that life throws at you. It's, it's flowing more smoothly. So for a woman who right now is pushing that boulder up the hill, what do you think that next step should be? Especially if she's not sure exactly the kind of support she needs?
Katie (21:16):
I think to kind of reflect and figure out where are those pain points, you know, is it your health, is it work? Is it what's going on at home? And kind of determine who can support you in that area. You know, maybe it's not a health coach right now, maybe you need, you know, some mental health therapy, you know, or maybe you need to go see your doctor and like figure out what's going on internally, you know, but just to reach out to somebody to kind of help you figure out where to go. Because you're right, like once you have some support it does, it lifts that weight so much for you.
Michelle (21:51):
Yeah, and I noticed that a lot of times the first practitioner you go to may not be particularly helpful and we can feel like, ugh, why do I bother? I don't have time for this. But as soon as you find someone, even if they're not the exact right end all, be all practitioner for you, they usually lead you to the next person and the next thing that you have to do. So I just wanna tag on to what you said, follow the energy. Just start somewhere. And when you find a click, you know, you find someone that gets it, okay, and maybe you work with them or maybe you don't, but maybe they can recommend you to the next thing. And now you find yourself several years later, like Katie in a new profession doing something entirely different, feeling entirely different. But it starts with like, let me just, lemme just try. Let me just see what this person has to say. And don't get discouraged if it's not the right fit, right off the bat.
Katie (22:45):
It takes work and it takes a lot of energy, but the reward is just, you know, to get to the other side and feel that relief and feel yourself again is just, it's so meaningful, so important for all of us to do that.
Michelle (23:00):
Can you even imagine if here we are like five years later and you were still wearing the nursing bras and you were still at that job and of course, you know, you're a mom of older kids by now, but can you imagine that some women just stay right there?
Katie (23:15):
I know it's, it makes me so sad for them. Like I want everybody to feel their best and you know, it's just, I don't know, I, I would hate to be that person that I was five years ago still, you know, it would just, I wouldn't be as impactful and as happy and I also wouldn't be as good for my family. You know, like I'm so much better for them and I enjoy my time with my kids so much more now, which is important. I should enjoy that time. Right? They don't, they're only, only little for so long.
Michelle (23:47):
I hear you. Well you know what, even if you had waited until 2022 to make the change you could have today, right? Yes. Anyone like today can be the day that you're like, I'm done pushing this boulder up the hill. I'm gonna get some support, I'm gonna figure it out. And today can be the day no matter how long you've been wearing the nursing bras or whatever it's for. For each of you listening, Katie, thank you so much for joining me and sharing some of your story and for reconnecting and just being part of my world. You're awesome.
Katie (24:14):
Thanks Michelle. This has been so fun. I love everything you do. So thanks so much for all the support you give to everybody.
Michelle (24:30):
Is the last episode of She's Got Power. If you are a health coach like me, like Katie, I invite you to subscribe to my Health Coach Power Community podcast. You can find it on Apple, Spotify, YouTube now, whatever floats your vote. This show is all about the business of being a health coach. So definitely for those in the profession only. Similarly, health coaches can also join my free Facebook group, the Health Coach, power Community, and follow me on Instagram at Health Coach Power Community. And if you are one of my many other listeners and supporters through the years who have been here for the health advice and inspiration in your own life, first of all, thank you. The best way to stay in touch is on Instagram where my account will remain public. I'm gonna be transitioning away from my current, she's got power handle. So just search Michelle Yoda. You'll find me. There are only a handful of other Michelle Yodas in the world, so it shouldn't be too hard. I'll be there continuing to share about life as a divorced mom. Going great gracefully, staying healthy as I walk my talk, taking care of my healthy very best that I can along the way. Wishing you all the very best and most of all the power to embrace change.


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