Coach Yourself Interview with Muffy Churches

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Coach Yourself Interview with Muffy Churches
Wednesday May 11th 2016

Interview with Muffy Churches
Author of Coach Yourself by Love&Write Publishing

Question: Why did you think it was important to write Coach Yourself? 

Muffy Churches: When I first opened my executive coaching business, I spent the first few years basking in the glow of feeling like the luckiest professional in the world- Each week, I had the privilege of sharing in the personal growth of inspiring corporate leaders and life was perfect. 

One day driving to a session, it occurred to me that I was reaching only a handful of individuals at a time with the life-changing, fulfilling experience that coaching generates. In that moment I committed to writing a book that had been on my mind for years- one that would provide a simple step-by-step process to empower each one of us, anywhere in the world, to coach ourselves through change and transformation, free of charge, and at our own pace. 

Question: Can you provide us with an introduction to the step process? 

Muffy Churches: When it comes to coaching ourselves, it's all about examining our thought patterns- about figuring out which thoughts are working in our favour and which are limiting us or are no longer serving us well in some way. There is a logical flow to this exploration process, which if followed, has the potential to provide us with life-changing ways to manage the ineffective thinking that may have been plaguing us for years. 

The process I created for the book moves you through a series of 7 stages of self-awareness and problem solving and provides you with the opportunity to think, act, feel and speak differently, in order to create a more fulfilling experience on any personal topic. The 7 steps are: 'Your Reality, Your Vision, Your Awareness, Your Options, Your Action, Your Celebration, and Your Maintenance". 

In time, once you get a feel for moving through these stages using the workbook exercises as a guide, you'll have the skill to take yourself through the coaching process in your head around other life issues, without having to refer to the book. 

Question: What types of tools are included in Coach Yourself? 

Muffy Churches: The key concept we're working with is -the importance of mindset'- how to gain an understanding of the power of our thinking and how to engage it effectively to achieve the life changes we're looking for. The reader is provided with: 
1. Core self-coaching principles
2. A self-coaching toolkit
3. The 7-Step process and accompanying personal workbook

Question: How can we leverage our common anxieties for positive outcomes? 

Muffy Churches: Our negative, worrisome, and anxious feelings are actually gifts if we know how to use them as such. They are clues that can lead us to an awareness of what isn't comfortable, correct, or functioning well in our life. They therefore offer us the occasion to coach ourselves- to choose to change our thinking, perceptions and behaviour on any particular topic, in order to achieve a more satisfying outcome. 

A common example is performance anxiety. Most of us, for very normal reasons, experience a level of nervousness when presenting. If the adrenalin rush gets the best of us, it can reduce our ability to think clearly, and we produce a sub-par performance. Instead, we can learn to leverage the nerves by shifting our reasoning. We take the anxious energy from our negative mindset and using new thinking, we literally work to transform it to -excitement', which can lead to the heightened performance we can be proud of and actually enjoy. 

Question: How can we change our mindset? 

Muffy Churches: Changing our mindset is an exhilarating exercise. It is possible and it does work magic! However it definitely requires persistence because it takes time to reprogram thought patterns that have been a familiar part of us for years. 

The first thing to remember is that our wish is our brain's command. Grey matter has the capacity to learn and adapt to change, so if we create a fresh way to think, and persist at repeating this new mindset over time, fresh neural pathways will be built and the old will fall away from disuse (Neuroplasticity). With intention and determination we can literally, -change our mind'. 

Here's a process to experiment with: 
First, shift your negative thinking on any topic to something positive, constructive, and realistic. 'I'm well prepared for this presentation, I have plenty of knowledge in the field, and the audience will enjoy hearing what I have to say…I'm REALLY looking forward to this!" 

Then, repeat your new thinking like a broken record for days in advance. You'll need to undo long-term conditioning and the repetition functions to build those new neural pathways in the brain. It takes time and perseverance but it will work, and you'll transform your apprehension, into personal empowerment, action, and positivity! 

Interview by Brooke Hunter

For more information on Brooke Hunter visit:

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