The Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, Episode 133
Christine: Hi, I’m Coach Christine. This is my podcast, it’s the Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, and we’re on episode #133. If you are new here, know that I tend to use terms I’ve introduced in prior episodes - and this episode is no exception - should you feel a bit lost when this happens, I invite you to use my show notes for a list of earlier episodes to get caught up! High-level, I’m all about coaching you to become the CEO of Your Life and in my world, CEO stands for Conscious Effective Olympian.
In this episode, I interview a client of mine about her experience working with me, we’ll celebrate your wins, and a little bit more.
I appreciate that you pressed play on this episode, today. Here we go.
[happy music under voiceover]
This podcast is my gift to you: a parent adjusting to the idea of an empty nest - or possibly a student who's wondering how your parents are feeling about you heading out on your own. These podcast episodes will have a base of life coaching infused with reminders to cheer yourself on and maybe with a dash of my alter ego, Sally (the hotline video operator), popping in from time to time. I’m here to remind you that you should be your own biggest fan!
[end happy music]
My amazing friend, in my last episode I talked about how imposter syndrome has a way of popping into your life in new areas once you conquer it in others, and interviewing a client of mine about what it’s like to work with me had my protector wanting to take over again - yes, there were some super speed intense thought-deliveries that I needed to manage. Look, I never pretend to have it all together: I share lessons as I learn, as I experience them! The good news is it didn’t stop me from asking, scheduling, recording and now editing this episode. The positive is that if I do this again - the leveling up that I did in this episode will make next time easier - on my thought-deliveries. How are you leveling up in your life?
As always, you may submit feedback, questions or comments to any section of these episodes by leaving me a message (text or audio) - on my google voice number: That’s 1-920-LIFEWIN or (920-543-3946). Of course, you’ll find that in my show notes, too, if you’re looking for it later.
All of my offerings, podcast show notes, transcriptions of the episodes, and more can be found on my website: Your Empty Nest Coach dot com.
[computer game level up music (short)]
My Wish for You Today
My amazing friend, my wish for you today is that you step into your life boldly. Your life. Not the life you were told to live by others but the life that you were put on this planet to live, the one where you are the leading character.
[computer game level up music (short)]
Christine: Today we get to spend some time with an amazing client of mine, Jennifer.
Jennifer: Oh, it’s super exciting to be here, thank you.
Christine: Coaching brings up personal topics, so we’ll be using Jennifer’s first name only for this interview, as she requested. As with all of my private coaching clients, I’m truly honored to work with Jennifer. It has been exciting to be her coach: getting to know this incredibly intelligent, brave, and amazing woman. I’m beyond excited for what is ahead for her, and her family. Words cannot express my appreciation that she took the time to do this interview for both me - and for you to have a peek to see what it is like to work with me.
Jennifer: Well, first I have to thank you because this has really been invaluable to me. I think when we met I was in a much darker place, maybe, or less optimistic place, at least, and so I really appreciate the work that you do and think it’s fantastic. So, it’s great to be here.
Christine: My listener, right now is where my protector was throwing in those imposter syndrome thought-deliveries. I had no idea what to expect out of this interview and where it was going to go.
Thank you so much.
I had never spoken with Jennifer about how she found me because she was one of those clients that purchased with no prior conversations with me, I asked her about this.
Do you remember how you found me?
Jennifer: Well, I’m a big podcast listener. I listen to a lot of political podcasts and history podcasts. And, you know, it was Christmas and my daughter had been home for a couple of weeks - and she was gonna be with us for a couple more weeks - she goes to school - she’s a junior in college. And my younger daughter is a junior in high school and so I was already starting to feel, you know, an overwhelming sadness that she was going to be going back. And just really, a kind of deep sense of loss about that. To the point that I wasn’t even able to enjoy the time with her because I was already dreading her going back to college.
I simply went on Spotify, and I thought, “you know, I need some advice on this empty nest business.” My sisters have gone through it but - and I talked to them - but they went through it a long time ago. I’m the youngest of six kids. I so felt like I needed somebody to place the feelings that I was having into context and help me through this phase. And so, I simply typed in “empty nest” on Spotify and you popped up. So, it was pretty random. And then I listened to several of your podcasts - not all of one hundred and thirty-some that you have now, but several of them, and I thought, “boy, you know, she seems really great.” I believe I might have signed up on your website for a newsletter - or updates, or something - and then when I found out you were doing private coaching, and I thought, “well, I’m not the wealthiest person but this sounds like a good investment, and this is what I need right now. I need to do this for myself. I just need to work through these feelings. I didn’t need deep dark psychotherapy you know, because you should go to a counselor for that- “ [giggles]
Christine: Yes, please.
Jennifer: I needed somebody to work through the feelings I was having. So you popped up and you sounded great on your podcast, you made sense to me. I didn’t know all of the lingo at the time, I know more of the lingo now. But that is essentially how I found you.
Christine: I remember you booked, and I was like, “I don’t think I’ve ever talked to her before.”
Christine: Who is this? [giggles]
Jennifer: Sort of did it on a whim. Sometimes I do those things on a whim.
Christine: It was wonderful. I’m so glad you did. So, did you have any hesitations or concerns when you signed up and if you did what was your biggest one?
Jennifer: I was wondering how comfortable it would be to share some of the things I was thinking with someone you didn’t know at first - how much you should open up to someone in that space. Kind of like that balance but you made me feel really comfortable - pretty much off the bat. And, yeah, so I did have some hesitation but I always thought, “Well, you know, I can just not continue if it’s not going well but actually it turned out really well and became more and more comfortable even with every session.”
I think that was my biggest hesitation.
Christine: And you feel like it wasn’t a problem?
Jennifer: Oh, no, not at all. I mean, after the first five to ten minutes.
Christine: Oh, wow, that’s quick. Yay!
Jennifer: Oh, yeah, no, it was during the first session for sure. But you always never know what to expect when you sign up to something.
Christine: Absolutely. Well, what’s interesting is that as a coach, I always feel the same way too. Because -
Jennifer: Oh sure.
Christine: You don’t know. And I would never want to work with someone who wasn’t comfortable anyway, so it is wonderful. That is kind of the benefit of the podcast is I figure if you’ve listened to three, or four or five and you get me - we’ll be okay.
Thinking about coaching with me, do you - is there any part of it that you enjoyed more than anything else in the experience?
Jennifer: I really like the models that you use. I’m a big fan of visuals and analogies. So putting these important concepts - and the way that you’re able to put them in analogies like your protector, and the boxes of thoughts - I thought that was really valuable.
It is a deep concept. It’s such a deep concept but the way that you’re able to communicate that, I think was really useful to me. So, I love the models but what I loved about the private coaching is that you can take things that are happening to you right now, and you help us run them through the models in a very personalized way.
So, things that we’ve talked about are my daughter’s tattoos, for example. I don’t mind sharing that with you.
Christine: That’s a great story. I love that one.
Jennifer: Which I very quickly got over by working through the CTFAR model with you. And so that was a lot of fun. And now that I’ve evolved to kind of the CEO model, I can see how I’m able to work more quickly through those things myself but I still like to run some things by you because some things - and we’ve talked about a few things that don’t exactly fit the model sometimes.
Jennifer: That you think don’t fit it. That you’ve helped me sort of see how it can fit and how you can re envision the situation in a more positive light to be more supportive to your child. And I think I have been more supportive to my child since we’ve started working together. I don’t get on her case as much about - you know - I was never a huge nag - I was always pretty positive and supportive but I always worried about her future and thinking about what she’s gonna to do next, and always kind of - I’m a college advisor - or professor - I don’t mind saying that - so, I know a lot about college and giving students advice and I think I was treating my daughter like one of my advisees. You know, peppering her with questions all the time, worrying about whether she was taking advantage of college and whether she was going to do X,Y, or Z. And I think you’ve helped me be more calm and have more faith in her and myself to sort of, let it happen, and let her be herself in working through that.
I think that was a pretty big breakthrough for me, one of the breakthroughs that we’ve had, including her tattoos which was a small part of that. [giggles]
Christine: Yeah, do you remember, I would love to tell - if you don’t mind sharing, what did I challenge you to do with the tattoos? Do you remember?
Jennifer: Was it to envision that she was covered with all of them? I can’t remember.
Jennifer: I think that was one of the things you suggested to me, like “So, what?” You know, what’s gonna happen? You know, really nothing.
And then I kept taking it further: well, she’s gonna have to get them removed some day, she might not like them some day and X, Y, and Z is gonna happen. But to envision it and to be like, well, maybe she’ll get it done and it’ll be beautiful. You know, and it’s her own body.
Jennifer: And so, that was one of the more, I think, comical, and kind of fun things to work through. But there have been other ones, too, that have been really helpful too.
Christine: Well, I’m glad you can call it comical now. Because
Jennifer: Yeah, yeah.
Christine: it was not comical when you first came -
Jennifer: No it wasn’t. I was worried she wasn’t going to like them in the future and going to do something now that she would regret later. And, so, we worked through that and I’ve been able to let that go quite a bit and just take those thoughts, and put them aside and say, “What a beautiful tattoo,” because I do like the four that she has right now. [giggles]
Christine: Oh, that’s awesome! Wonderful!
Jennifer: I think the other model that we worked through - another issue - which was her getting her first apartment.
Jennifer: Moving out of the dorms and signing her first lease. And that was scary for me too ‘cause she goes to school in New York City, and so, you helped me work through that one too. And, I’m comfortable with it now because she is very responsible, and she can handle it. And like you said, “it could be wonderful.”
Jennifer: But again, I had thought three steps down the road, like “what if she has a bad landlord? You know, what’s X,Y, and Z, and she and I have talked about the precautions to take so that that doesn’t happen but I no longer dwell on those “what-if” - more negative, I guess, scenarios.
Jennifer: Worrisome scenarios. So, I think that was really helpful, too.
Christine: Jennifer and I talked about how when we play out those scenarios in our thoughts - our mind is already living in an emotional state as if the scenarios are real. We already have all of the stress as if it has happened even though it hasn’t happened yet - and may never happen. Our mind is that powerful - and much of my coaching is about learning to use this amazing tool - our mind - for us rather than against us.
I then asked Jennifer if there were any surprise benefits to working with me.
Jennifer: I’ve got a couple thoughts on that. I think the surprise benefit for me was that working with you didn’t only help me with my daughter’s situation - the empty nest. The way that you’ve taught me to - and worked with me to get better at choosing the thoughts that I want to think and gaining more energy - it spilled over into other areas of my life. I can see myself having more energy, feeling better about my professional life -
Jennifer: I get glimpses of that now. This spills into other areas of your life. Including, like you and I discussed, the death of my mom and dad, and guilt about that, and as we get older and have college-age kids, we also have aging parents, and there were a lot of thoughts I was having in that regard: of guilt - not just the grief but also guilt that I didn’t do X, I didn’t do Y when they were alive, and so, actually, I was really surprised that those parts of my life would be affected too by working with you.
I don’t think it’s just about the empty nest. I think it is about all the things surrounding it.
Christine: It sounds like you would recommend this program.
Jennifer: Oh, yeah, absolutely. [laughs] I think so. I think so. Definitely.
Christine: Thank you. Thank you so much.
I want to jump in here and mention that Jennifer is right, what I teach works for all areas of your life. I’ve worked with non-empty nesters - I’ve even worked with those who don’t have children at all. I do focus on empty nesters because I identify easily with those adjusting to the empty nest, and I’m still in that stage myself currently. I understand the emotional turmoil that may be the reality for so many. Some women get to this stage and feel like they’ve reached the end of their life because their entire goal was to raise their children. Now they don’t know what to do. So, I’m here to remind them that they still have amazing years ahead of them and I enjoy having this little secret (well, I guess it isn’t now) that what I teach will help with all areas of your life.
I’m giving you something forever. [giggles]
Jennifer: Yes, I would agree with that for sure.
It’s now that I looked at the questions that my Instagram audience had sent in for me to ask either myself or my client, and I had this interesting one.
“What’s the most evil thing you will do to a client?” I’m like, what? Why would you even ask that?
I don’t know. On purpose? Like, what would I do? [laughs]
Jennifer: Send all the resources in one day. [laughs]
Christine: Oh my go- that’s really funny. I really try not to do that. [laughs]
On a more serious note, we did get this question…
“How often would Christine talk to me - what does Coach Christine’s accountability look like: calls, texts, etc.”
Jennifer: Oh my goodness. That has been absolutely wonderful. I get frequent texts from Coach Christine, and I just love them because they come on Mondays - and they come at other times in the week - during the weekend too, and they say, “I’m still your coach.” So she’s there whenever you need her. And, I think that was, actually, one of the surprises I was going to say in the last answer that I gave. That that was also a surprise to me because I did expect us to meet once a week like the program says but I didn’t necessarily expect you to be there on text - for me!
We just had a conversation about something earlier this week where I had a work experience that I wanted to kind of sort through with you - and we went back and forth about ten times. And you just didn’t stop answering me which I thought was really great.
Christine: It was so interesting.
Jennifer: It could have gone on longer even. Definitely, she’s incredibly responsive over text when you need her. And I’ve really appreciated that too.
Christine: Oh, I’m glad! Here’s a really good question, and I think this is very good for you because you are a very busy woman. So, here’s the question, “I’m a busy Mom. How do I find time for coaching?"
Jennifer: It was tough, I have to say, but it’s worth it, and if you think about how much time it’s gonna save you in the long run, like, honestly, really, I think I’m more productive as a person and the half an hour a week, and then if you want to take advantage of the text, too, and the resources - I probably spent - you know you can spend as much time as you have on going through the resources. Coach Christine was really patient with me because some weeks I didn’t have time to go through all of the resources, so I might have gone slower than the average client. Some weeks I might have gone maybe a little bit faster - and that was totally okay with her. That part of it I wouldn’t worry about. And then if you think about it - it’s setting aside a half an hour for a conversation.
I do think, you know, plan on setting aside at least an hour a week to go through the resources - she might suggest more.
Christine: No, that’s fair, that’s fair.
Jennifer: As a busy person, sometimes I would do like an hour over the weekend, maybe an hour during the week, or a couple of hours in both directions. There were other days where I’d sit there and go through them for three hours. But the point is, is that it’s flexible and it’s not rigid so you don’t have to spend two hours a day doing the work.
You should spend some time doing the work but it’s really manageable. Like I said, I’m a busy professional and I probably work in my professional life about 50+ hours a week, and so I get that. But for me it was doable, and I think you can make time for it because it will be well worth it in the end.
Christine: We had another bold question from Instagram, “Can I move in with you?” No. [laughs]
Jennifer: That would be nice. It would be nice to have you as a next door neighbor.
Christine: Awww, that would be nice.
Christine: The feeling is mutual, actually.
Jennifer: We can sit on the porch.
Christine: You are quite impressive, Jennifer.
Jennifer: Well, so are you, and even more so. I think you have way more energy than I do -
Christine: You said that when we first met. I remember that was one of the first things you said to me.
Jennifer: Yeah, I was low on energy. I was burning out.
Christine: You have so much more energy now.
Jennifer: I do. I have more energy.
Christine: Than you did. And your life isn’t less stressful, I would say -
Jennifer: No, it’s not.
Jennifer: But I do feel like I have more energy. I really do. I was, you know, I was in a burnt out kind of place when we first started working together. I’m just really grateful that I’m not there anymore.
Christine: Jennifer and I spoke for a few minutes about why when we do this work, we feel we have more energy...you where you are now you see how all these thoughts in our head - it’s the clutter - and you see it in a house when you have clutter all over your house
Jennifer: Yes, exactly.
Christine: and how it’s draining. And to me, it’s very clear in someone’s mind it’s the same thing, but it’s so hard to get to a point where someone understands that.
Jennifer: And I had so much clutter in my mind - all the time that I would go to one room and I would forget what I was doing, and I thought it was age-related because I’m slightly over 50 years old, but I really think a lot of it had to do with the clutter: you know, always misplacing my phone, forgetting what I went to this room for, you know forgetting what I was doing [giggle] or supposed to do going from room to room. And I think once you get rid of that clutter, you can focus on what you’re doing at that given moment.
Christine: Yes. It is so powerful.
Jennifer: And so my focus has increased in work too. Not only forgetting what I’m going to the room for so that’s been a benefit. And I think that is one reason why some of my time has freed up a bit.
Christine: Jennifer was adventurous enough to answer the four questions I ask all of my guests.. my listeners know, I don’t have guests often but when I do I like to ask these fun questions: so, waffles or pancakes?
Jennifer: Waffles, definitely.
Christine: Any reason?
Jennifer: Oh, man, I love the way the syrup collects in the little square things.
Jennifer: [giggle] and they don’t get as soggy as quickly as pancakes.
Christine: What is one item you couldn’t live without and why?
Jennifer: Does it have to be a physical item?
Jennifer: Well, my family, obviously. That’s the obvious -well you can live without them, I mean but that’s not - uh - yeah.
Jennifer: I don’t want to go there.
Christine: We hear her working through her thoughts, right?
Jennifer: Yeah. I don’t want to go there. I don’t want to go there. I was going to say my phone if it has to be a physical item but I grew up without a cell phone, so I’m gonna say my glasses ‘cause I like to read and I don’t see very well without them. Or, diet coke with ice - that’s one of my vices: I drink too much diet coke with ice.
Christine: And Jennifer has these lovely purple glasses. My audience won’t see them but they’re very cool. All time favorite movie?
Jennifer: It’s a Wonderful Life.
Christine: So, I could guess but what’s your reason?
Jennifer: I think it’s about valuing what you have in the moment and not looking at what could have been or what you’ve lost but I’ve always loved that movie but now that you say it, “What’s my reason?” it fits really well with the kind of work you do, and we do, as well, with you.
Christine. It does.
Jennifer: It fits really well.
I always torture my kids on Christmas that they have to watch that one with me. Yeah, I love that movie.
Christine: Alright and my final fun question: You have one hour of alone time. No one's gonna bother you. What’s your go to thing to do?
Jennifer: Play piano or sing. I sing worse than I play piano so probably sing because nobody would be around to hear me so I can belt out my show tunes.
Christine: Oh my gosh. Alto? Soprano?
Jennifer: Alto, for sure.
Christine: So, I’m a soprano. When we’re neighbors, we can do duets.
Jennifer: Oh, you are? Oh, that would be awesome. That would be great.
Christine: [giggles] How did I not know this about you?
Well this is great!
Jennifer: Thank you so much.
Christine: I don’t want to take up any more time. Is there anything else you want to share before we wrap up?
Jennifer: No. Just that I highly recommend you. You’re awesome. Like you tell us. You’re awesome, too.
Christine: Awww. You’re all amazing. I love it. Well, thanks for sharing. Thank you for trusting me to be your coach. It means the world to me. Thanks for being here.
Jennifer: Pleasure to do it.
[computer game level up music (short)]
New Things. New Things. New Things!
It looks like hubby and I’s nest won’t be super empty for the next year - possibly. While our daughter was accepted into two grad schools for the programs she hoped and dreamed for - the financials aren’t lining up to make that a reality so as of today, she’ll be home with us in our new, smaller space. Cozy days ahead! That being said, plans are changing by the day, so I wouldn’t be overly shocked if this plan changes a few more times. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited about having her home for a bit since we did miss out on a few years of a traditional education. Her graduating from college at the age of 17 has been quite a journey for all of us. I may fill you in a bit more on the home sale and our why about that but with my family being more private than I am, I want to chat with them about how much they are okay with me sharing on this podcast. It’s all good. Don’t worry.
Of course, since we heard from my client Jennifer, it is worth noting that I have a few remaining private coaching spots open in April. I’d love to work with you!
I’m going to skip some of my regular segments in this episode this week since I interviewed Jennifer but we must, of course first celebrate our wins!
[computer game level up music (short)]
Celebrating You and Your Wins[sound]
My win? Setting some boundaries for social media and email requests during this busy month.
As for your wins, I’m happy to share the last two weeks of wins from TikTok and Instagram! See my show notes to click through to view these wins and cheer everyone on. As always, please forgive any mispronunciations:
Rachel shared, “I’ve taken my ADHD medication consistently for almost a week!”
Rachelbeth shared,”This week I set a boundary with my employer about my compensation! They were super nice about it, but it was really hard to do.”
Aiden: “I submitted my junior paper last night!”
Ryann: “I dumped my toxic ass boyfriend like I should have a year ago!”
Sunny day: “Going on a vacation to help my mental health.”
Meghan H: “I went to the last day of a class that I hate, I never have to go back and I’m so happy.”
Miss Mystery: I got a 100% on my math test.
MissBoyce: Pressing on despite troubling past situations.
TalkShitWithP shares, “My Mama just got appointed as the new Member of the Tanzanian Parliament and Minister of Foreign Affairs as of an hour ago!”
What? Okay, Paula is kind enough to give us an article that we can click through and read this. This is truly awesome.
An Anonymous TikTokker shared, “We talked to my boyfriend’s family about him moving out with me and they took it great. I was so scared about it. They even offered us their couches (so they could get new ones) and were super supportive.
Thank you all for sharing your wins. Now my listener, it is your turn to think about a recent win in your life. Got it? Stand up - if you aren’t already and give yourself a round of applause. Go ahead. I’d love for you to share that win as an audio message for my next podcast episode, or on my socials by adding a microphone emoji to your comment. Go, you!
[happy music (short)]
Two Questions for You
Question 1: Do you relate to anything Jennifer shared today?
and Question 2: What thought-delivery in your mind do you need to sort or clear out?
As always, I provide content to make you think, my empty nest friend.
My HOPE is that I’m able to provide you with thoughts that positively impact your life.
If you enjoy this podcast please don’t forget to share it with others, it’s the best way to allow it to reach a wider audience. And of course, follow or subscribe in your favorite podcast app!
I plan to be back with episode 134 in two weeks. In the meantime, you have 132 other episodes, from me, to catch up on, or relisten to.
Before I go, I’m going to bring Jennifer back: My empty nest friend, Jennifer and I want to remind you today that you are amazing!
Podcast studio in my car? In my script I said, “this is a thing I’m considering.” Actually, I’m sitting here in my car, recording all of the parts that weren’t the interview. So how does it sound? I wonder how this is working out? We are moving into a smaller space and this - this what I’m testing, very well may be the perfect solution. I drive to a park, record, and it’s better than the sound in my house. I think. What do you think?
If you want videos on how I’m setting my car up so that it works, I do have some on TikTok. I think I’ve posted some on Instagram. Super fun. And I can warm-up like crazy because no one is around.. Bbbbbwwwww - have a great day!