By Louise Jensen
Tonya Sheridan has been one of the leading life coaches for 25 years and receives phenomenal feedback for the programme she devised. Also a successful writer Tonya is very much in demand but took time out of her busy schedule to speak to The Happy Starfish.
I believe you started in this field due to your own health problems - could you elaborate on them please if not too personal?
I would rather not elaborate on past health problems and here is the reason why. Most people get wrapped up in their diagnosis, the symptoms, statistics, etc. and that keeps them stuck where they are. When you get to the root of all physical illness, it always goes back to the power of our thoughts. If people can let go of their diagnosis, that is their first step towards healing.
That’s an interesting theory Tonya. I believe you were helped by a holistic therapist - was he a life coach?
He never gave himself a label. Again, just as diagnosing someone with an illness does not give a true picture of what is really going on, narrowing down his wisdom, intuition, and knowledge to certificates on a wall does not begin to do him justice. At the time that I went to him, which was over twenty years ago, you did not hear about Life Coaches.
True, life coaching is a poplar thing to have right now and the right coach seems to really achieve results. What is the greatest change you have seen in a client?
I don't think one person's challenge is necessarily greater than another’s, what does matter is how a client perceives their challenge.
Absolutely, you can never label a client’s issue as trivial or more important than others.
Yes the greatest change is when a client actually lets go of old beliefs or overcomes society's beliefs. This is when the greatest changes occur, from within, and I have seen this happen with more than one client. Letting go of beliefs is not as easy as reading an article or taking a workshop though. It's a process.
As you have 25 years’ experience what changes have you seen in people?
People are definitely more open to reading about creating a new way of life for themselves, but very few are actually implementing it. There is a lot of talk but not much action.
That’s a shame; do you feel women are becoming more empowered?
I still see women struggling to get into their own power. Again, there is a lot of talk, but if you really want to tap into your own feminine power you have to do the work and you have to do it alone. This is what is scary to most women. By do it alone, I don't mean without a Coach or they can't have a partner or friends, but that it must be all them, all from within. This means no blaming and taking 100% responsibility for the good and the bad.
It is can be daunting – what do you do to help?
I created my Interior Design Life Coaching in order to help others to be able to heal themselves and to design a life that they love. Every change in your life has to come within side of you - from your Interior Guide and what my program does is gets you back in touch with who you really are, your true self, and your value on this planet. I share the information that helped me change my life and broke down esoteric teachings that make people's eyes glaze over into comprehensive, doable steps.
The system is an 8 week program that I broke down into 8 separate Modules that are delivered weekly to your email inbox or you can access them through your special membership area you are given when you purchase the program. Each module contains a recording made by me that is approximately 45 minutes long, along with the written transcript, action guide, and some bonuses such as guided meditations. I am very proud of this program which I put hundreds of hours, thought, and passion into. If someone purchases my program and follows it step by step, their life will begin to change. Again, it's not enough just to listen to the recordings, you must take the actions you are given to do each week.
It sounds fantastic, is it accessible worldwide?
Yes, and I do work with clients worldwide via telephone and/or Skype who live in all different time zones. I have worked with clients across the United States, and in Canada, Poland, New Zealand, and Denmark to date.
Tonya, I know you are insanely busy, thanks for your time.