by Batya D. Wininger, MSW, MA, KAP

The American myth of going-it-alone and rugged individualism is wonderfully inspiring - to a point.

In actuality, very few people live their lives alone, and those that do tend to be hermits living a frugal, lonely existence. The rest of us engage with significant others, family, friends, colleagues, and the world around us.

As I tell my clients, “If God wanted us to do everything ourselves, He/She/It would have created one person at the beginning of time and given them cloning.”

The question then becomes: When is the right time to call for help and support? Specifically, when do you engage the help of a life coach? 

Although this list is not by any means exhaustive, it should serve to give you a sense of the various times in your growth - both personal and career - that you might enlist the aid of a life coach.

1.  (Re)defining and (re)connecting to your passion and interests.

2. You’re going through a major life transition and are feeling the ripple effect. (Change in relationship status, lifestyle change, moving to a new place, kids heading off to college, change of career, etc

3. You feel overwhelmed for more than a day or two.

4. You’re experiencing a sense of unfulfillment.

5. You want to define (or redefine) your goals.

6. You’d like to change the course of your life.
7. You want to realize your potential (whether you know what it is or not).

8. You’d like support as you pursue your goals, or you’re building your personal or business support team.

9.  You believe accountability and acknowledgment will help you reach your goals

10.  You need increased motivation.

11.  Your mind works best when there’s someone to receive your thoughts and ideas (external

12.  Time management keeps slipping through your fingers.

These are only some of the life circumstances when it’s healthy to reach out for support. Often, we go to friends, significant others, family members, or colleagues for help and guidance. At times, that’s enough.

But the people in our lives often have a vested interest (often subconscious, rarely malicious) in keeping change to a minimum. If you change, because they are in relationship with you, they will need to change as well. This can be frightening to others. In addition, we can “use them up,” or they may be preoccupied with their own changes or stressors.

Working with a life coach provides you with objective, encouraging, clarifying, and motivating support that is hard to find elsewhere. We all need a team behind us to reach our potential, to build our success. A life coach is a great asset!

To learn more about life coaching and how it might benefit you, please visit or contact

This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

When I was 14 years old, I surreptitiously made my way through the stacks in the local library until I came to the Psychology section. One after one, I took down the books whose titles I thought would provide an answer, went to the table of contents and, if there were any, I flipped to the pictures.

Keep reading Show less

James Mai

Many of us have made resolutions and pledged ourselves to transforming some aspect, or aspects, of our lives. For some, these resolutions will involve career, budget, home ownership, etc., but for a LOT of us, they will involve various health, exercise and fitness goals.

Often, these resolutions are vague, like “lose weight” or “exercise more”, and way too often they begin with a gym contract and end with Netflix and a bag of takeout. Getting specific can help in holding yourself accountable for these commitments, though. So we thought it might be interesting to talk with a local gay trainer, James Mai, about his fitness journey, his work as a trainer and how he keeps himself motivated, and get some of his suggestions for carrying through on this year’s fitness resolutions!

Keep reading Show less


Keep reading Show less