Andy: Raising awareness on the importance of men's mental health

Andy approached me after I had shared a talk at work on Mindfulness and how it can create harmony in the workplace.  He had been through an intense few months personally and professional and reached out for support.  Andy wanted to publicly share his testimonial for the men reading this, because he feels men typically don’t find it that easy or comfortable to talk about thoughts or feelings and hoped by sharing his experience that it might inspire others to take action if they feel they need support, in whatever guise.

My top three goals upon starting the 6-month program were spending more quality time with family, especially my parents.  Getting into regular exercise and eating healthily and getting back into dating after a break up 6 months prior.

My coach was able to help me work toward these goals, initially just by going through the process of setting them out and simply explaining that in life, without goals, we often feel as though we are aimlessly wandering without purpose. Once I had really thought about what I wanted to spend my time doing more (or less) of, I felt as though a fog lifted. For me, the routine of regular check-ins on progress against a set of pre-determined goals really motivated me to stay on track and deliver.

The biggest tangible change I have noticed since beginning the program has been the positive impact that eating healthily and exercising regularly has had on me. On everything from sleep, to general mood, mindset, and performance at work.

The most significant overall change I have noticed has been the change in relationship with my parents. Dedicating quality time to them more frequently and being really present and engaged whilst in their company has been a joy. After the death of a close friend last year and the stark realisation of loss, I recognised the need to take action and focus on the most important people in my life – my family and close friends.

I would describe my coach as warm, personable, very reliable and totally knowledgeable in her field. I would recommend my coach, Ali, to EVERYONE. No matter who we are, we all needs goalsand the space to clarify them. With these goals in mind, striving to achieving them becomes addictive and so good for the soul. I’d recommend coaching to any human being.

Whilst being held to account on delivering against my goals, as my coach, Ali applied a pragmatic approach to deadlines. There were certain points in the process where I hadn’t delivered what I said I would, due to things coming up, which in life they inevitably do. Rather than lying, I always felt as though I was able to be honest with Ali about having not delivered against a specific action, which demonstrates the level of trust and honesty in our relationship. These are two crucial components in a relationship between a coach and a coachee.

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