Saturday, February 12, 2011

Life Coach = Fight Coach

So, I have this extreme issue with writing the word Coach because I am always afraid I am going to mistake it for the word couch considering I might be one of the world’s worst college level spellers.  This has been an issue for me ever since I read a Beverly Cleary book where Ramona would mix up the words coach and couch.  Anyway, point being: I’m sorry in advanced. 

So a little over a week ago I went to a life coach.  Not exactly something I needed, considering the only thing in my life that I need “coaching” in is my career options.  I mean, I’m not trying to quit smoking (which I don’t do), and I’m not thinking about getting married or anything, but I felt like I needed a little guidance with what to do about school and my current job situation and what not.  So the councilor that I am already seeing (for reason much different, and reasons that will more than likely show up some point in a blog) suggest I go to this life coach on campus to figure out which direction to go in life.

When I hear the words “life coach,” my mind automatically wonders to “Gilmore Girls” and Paris Geller.  You know, the crazy, need-to-be-in-control girl who wanted, no needed, to be on top of everything?  She ended up going to a life coach and ended up with a craft table.  Maybe it’s the influence of modern media on my life, but that was fully what I was expecting when I walked into the personal counseling office that day.

So naturally when this life coach asks me what I am expecting from a life couch.  I answer, sitting down across from her (because I am not one for the therapy couches), “Please don’t give me a craft table,”  Granted, she looked at me like I was crazy, but really I was probably the most sane person in the entire counseling office at that point.  

She went on to ask to about my life and where on a scale from one to ten I stood on things like family, school, friends, recreation, and other things like that.  Not too hard.  THEN she wanted to tell me what a ten would be on my scale. Okay, that’s not hard either.  My typical answers would be things like more acceptances for things, more free time, things like that.  But no.  She didn’t like those answers.  I wasn’t thinking big enough.  I needed to be thinking of what I would like my life to be like if I had an infinite amount of money and resources and could go anywhere in the world. 

Maybe this wouldn’t be a problem for most.  But I’m a writer, she knew this, I don’t think in the  box when it comes to dreaming.  I go way above and beyond.  So basically here’s the scenario I ended up with by the end of the hour:

My life with my family would be absolutely perfect.  They would accept every decision I ever had, but would give me their honest input in the situation.  My brother would break up with his current girlfriend and get a backbone again. I would have moved to L.A. to go to school at UCLA for writing and screenplay.  This would mean leaving all my friends at home (which were the only thing on the list that I originally rated as a 10) and starting new on the other side of the country.  After graduation I would be a published author and move to London, England for a bit of time.  There I would fall in love with the man I would marry.  He would obviously be British, cute, and very intelligent.  He would also be a nerd preferably a nerdfighter and someone who likes Dr. Who and Harry Potter.   He wouldn’t be afraid to be an open nerd, and would actually flaunt his love for all things nerdy with ease.  He’d be educated and have a successful career.  Also, he would be very independent so I would be able to travel the world without him because screw traveling with him. (Does this sound oddly like a certain British youtuber to anyone?  Because I know sure as hell who I was picturing when talking about this “dream guy” and no his username is not a digimon).  After marrying said dream boy, I would return to LA where I would be working on writing screenplays, and slowly I would make a good name for myself and my work- in fact, I would become famous. 

This is the gist of the odd dream world where I live in, although a lot of the details vary a lot.  But to be honest, as much as I would love to be a published author some day, this is my dream world and in no way could I ever see it being a reality.

But evidently life coaches don’t believe in the separation of dream and reality because the last thing my life coach said to me was, “These things are dreams for a reason, we don’t just make them up.  This could be your life.” 

At that point, there were numerous things that I wanted to scream like “Yes we do make these things up!” and “It is a dream! Shut up!” but at that point I was in so much shock that I couldn’t even process what had happened.  It wasn’t until the next day that things really started to sink in and the truth of the matter hit me.

As much as I would like that to be my life, and as much as I regret not applying to UCLA and going into writing, to really stop and try to picture that as my entire life- I can’t.  I can’t picture myself being happy having other people edit and critic the scripts I work hard on. In fact, directors always change like 80% of the script and the scriptwriter’s ideas.  In my fantasy world- it’s not like that and I am the best in the business.  So let’s be honest, that isn’t going to happen.  I just don’t have the raw talent that you already need to be a great writer. (I think if anything this blog post proves that).  And while we’re thinking reality, I don’t have the means to make that my life.  I don’t have infinite amounts of money to put myself through college in LA, and certainly my parents wouldn’t accept the fact that I would want to try to make a living in a “you either make it or you don’t” type of society.  That’s that really.  There’s the reality of the situation.  The same reality this life coach decided that I could easily ignore if I only trusted that the means would somehow be there.

Now, I’m a somewhat religious girl.  I do believe in God, I believe in religion, but I’ll be honest I fight with it a lot.  But one thing I do know is that when we want to put trust in the means of survival being there, we turn to God for help.  Honestly, I don’t think God is going to support my selfish little utopia and provide me the means to make it there.  To make it in Hollywood, you have to either be born talented or born rich.  I was born neither. 

Not that I am trying to be a total downer on myself, but that wasn’t even the reason that I was going to the life coach.  I wanted help deciding between if I wanted to go into a field biology field or go into Veterinary practice.  That is something completely different than what this life coach got me on a tangent of.  Although tangent implies that we are still on the same graph, just touching the on a similar point.  I don’t think we were even on a tangent- she had me talking on a completely new graph. 

I want to be realistic here, but I also want to be truthful.

This life coach said we don’t make these things up, our dreams could be reality.  This is in fact true. Plenty of people dream of being writers and end up doing it.  People dream of being actors and become very good at it. But I could also tell her that I dreamed of becoming an evil dictator and taking over the world and spreading communism everywhere.  But truth be told, that is certainly a dream- and a fake dream at that.  You can’t do that.  I have worked with a potential terrorist before and you don’t tell them that just because they dream of someday making bombs and mailing them to people, that you can make that happen if you just believe.  We’re adults now, we know that we won’t all be president someday so you can stop telling us that we will be.

My truth is a lot different than most case scenarios.  I feel like as a writer, who is potentially a little more crazy than most but slightly less crazy than Lewis Carroll, I have to be able to have a dream world separated from reality.  Which is why being able to have my biology degree and at the same time being able to have a dream world that isn’t made up completely of fictional characters, but in fact has me in it, is what keeps me sane.  If I took that away by suddenly making my dream world come true, what would I have? I would always be searching for that new dream world- that new utopia.  I would never be fully at a ten in every aspect in my life because no matter what we have- when everything is too good to be true, there’s usually a way for it to be slightly better.  So instead I come up with this elaborate dream world where I can place myself and I can live out my fantasies of the time.  I can separate myself from what I have from what I “want” without the what ifs because I knew that there was never going to be a way for me to actually have that world.  But if I get that world even in the most slight of ways, I would wonder what would have happened if I took the more realistic route in my life- and that’s not a dream that’s a regret. 

This is what the life coach through a curve ball in by making me think about what I could have as a future.  This is the stuff she made me consider.

Safe to say, I will not be returning to my life coach.  I have deemed her crazy and I have actually moved onto going to the career planning center for help.  They actually know what I want and are helping me decide between being a vet or a biologist in a different field. 

But this is my basic journey, and I want to take you along for the ride.  I don’t know all the answers.  I want input.  I want thoughts.  I have a lot of trouble taking the thoughts from in my head and putting them out there on a blog post unless I am ‘in the moment.’ So I hope that I am going to have some good ‘in the moment’ blogs, because this one is certainly an afterthought.

Welcome to the journey.  We’re taking off the blindfold and we are seeing what’s in front of us.