I’ve had psychotherapy but I was looking for something more career- or aspiration -focused. Discussing my career struggles and ambitions seem inseparable from more deep-seated emotional challenges and experiences but I wasn`t sure what I could bring to the coach, what would be welcome or accepted. Coaching was homely and inspiring in equal measure! I recall the warmth and welcoming, relaxed atmosphere. I looked forward to coming each week. It felt like I had an ally on my journey. I felt listened to and the sessions were led by me and what I wanted. Antonia came up with useful specific tools, like visualising myself engaging in passions of mine in different situations to harness the positive feelings associated with those activities. I only had a few sessions (my choice really to discontinue, purely based on finances at the time) but it was a bit like jump leads for a flat battery, it gave me some invaluable resources and positive experiences at a challenging time in my life. Antonia also followed up, sending me interesting and relevant articles after our coaching had ended, which felt really personal.
On one level a boost that I needed at the time. But coaching also helped me on a more long term level, to move towards reconciling or synthesising seemingly different aspects of my life and character, for example reconciling creativity (a background enjoying words, music and art) with a career trajectory including jobs not typically associated with creativity, such as finance. This is a key, ongoing struggle for me – or at least I frame it as a struggle in my mind. Coaching helped me to work towards a possibility of honouring my creative side while also honouring my real world commitments such as my family and previous career choices and life experiences, and the factors that had influenced the path my life has taken. Antonia really saw and recognised what I was getting at and helped me start to reframe this. Although this is an ongoing struggle, I am closer to accepting my path and figuring out what makes it unique so I can share it with others and hopefully help other people too and coaching has definitely helped with that. I’m now finally starting work on blogging and making videos about health & wellbeing topics – which are key, enduring passions for me.
Choking. Drowning. Lost. Exhausted from the struggle of trying to stay afloat. Waves of shame and confusion crashing overhead, dragging me ever downward, tumbling further into the darkness of despair. This is how I felt when, in desperation, I decided to reach out for help. I sat at my computer and started searching for a counsellor or a life-coach, and that’s when I stumbled across Antonia’s website. I was immediately drawn to her warm smile and the words that she used to describe what she does: words like kindness, compassion, integrity, authenticity, connectedness. I immediately decided to contact her, and I can honestly say it was the best decision I made. I have been seeing her for over a year now, and her support has been truly life-changing.
Antonia is extremely gifted at what she does. Her ability to listen and hold information is extraordinary. She has helped me to make sense of so many seemingly separate things, making connections and bringing meaning and value to all the various parts of myself and my story. She has taught me to appreciate and accept that ALL parts of myself have their place and a job to do, even if this job is now outdated and no longer useful. She has helped me to understand that each part, each behaviour or habit was, in the past, or still is in the present, simply an attempt at comfort, self-protection or self-expression.This understanding has brought me an enormous sense of peace and calm; I can give up the ‘struggle’ or the ‘fight’ to rid myself of anything. I don’t need to diminish or obliterate parts of my character or work hard to make changes to become a ‘better’ person. But rather, Antonia has taught me to listen and be curious, and to be a compassionate caretaker of all of these parts of myself.
In particular, I have loved the creative way that Antonia works. She uses a wide range of techniques to move this work away from a purely intellectual exercise into a much more meaningful level, using imagination, colour, symbolism, and movement. This has helped me to connect with my long-lost friend: my body, and feel anchored within my limbs, my organs, my cells! One central theme we have worked on has been to develop my self-parenting, to create a loving, caring and dependable internal resource. The image I found to symbolise this was an enormous pair of colourful butterfly wings growing from my back, constantly there to protect me, to ground me, and to help me to connect with the beauty of life, of others, and within myself.
It’s hard to summarise in a few sentences what working with Antonia has done for me. All I can say is, I am a calmer, more content and a more confident person for having met her. I feel more resourced and able to face life, with all of its twists and turns, believing that I will cope, and even better, I will THRIVE. Thank you Antonia, simply for being you.
I sought life coaching to help air a very long and deep-seated depression, so I booked a session with Antonia after finding her practice online. Right away from the first session I started feeling that opening up was helping to alleviate years of built up stress, and thanks to Antonia’s caring, calm, and warm aura, it wasn’t hard or embarrassing to do so.Antonia worked with me to establish some headspace and also to encourage me that it’s okay to feel sad sometimes. Together we worked out what I wanted from life and put together a simple daily routine that would help me going forward. I cannot stress how helpful some form of routine has been for me, and the weekly sessions with Antonia felt like progress was being made.I encourage anyone who feels as though they need some direction; or even just wants to talk about how they feel, to not hesitate in giving Antonia a call. She has helped me tremendously and I am so very grateful.
Having experienced and struggled to cope with a major life event I knew that there was a need to find some form of support /intervention to feel able to move forwards in building the foundations of acceptance. Life was chaotic and painful which brought negative energies to the fore and challenged my inner values. It was exhausting at the time.
Over the years I had experienced some short term counselling sessions for loss and managing work loads/stressors but I knew that this form of support was not appropriate this time around. A friend of mine suggested life coaching – not something I had really considered or knew a lot about. I took to reading on the internet and in doing so, looked at a number of life coaches – anotonia’s web site was written in a style and manner that really had some meaning and made sense to me.
Antonia has supported me over several months now and it is only due to new financial commitments that I have had to reduce our weekly meetings to once monthly. That said, her sessions are not overly expensive and am of the view well worth it.
Antonia has a unique style of totally listening but also has the skill to enable an element of free reign within our sessions – however, with an acute ability to pull you up and constructively challenge the real meaning of what it is you are expressing. It is extremely easy to be yourself with Antonia and on occasion, appropriate injections of humour are present, but i must hasten to add, interjected by myself. Well placed humour is a very important factor in my world and assists in coping with the raw grief.
Working with Antonia has enabled me to find ways in which to manage the chaos, loss and pain I was experiencing. The loss/pain has not disappeared but what has begun to emerge is a change in the way I perceive myself and an acceptance that life events can’t just be managed and disappear. Instead, the excitement and positivity of learning ways in which to challenge and change myself, my views and on occasion, accept it is ok to be gentle on oneself has been really proactive.
If I hadn’t sought Antonia’s support I know that I would still be in a place of ‘stuckness’ and would have begun to live in a negative world which would have been self perpetuating. I am just so grateful that this is not the case as Antonia’s natural skills have enabled me to make changes for myself; something I am extremely grateful for.
I was teaching online for four hours on Zoom before each lunch time meeting with Antonia, so it says something that I was not itching for a break but very happily going straight into what was a very valuable hour with Antonia that I looked forward to each week.These sessions gave the reflection time in-between each meeting to both consciously process and subconsciously dream discoveries that were made in the material covered with Antonia. Thank you Antonia, I am still processing and dreaming.
The Project Self Change process with Antonia has changed my life. Having no prior experience of speaking to a change coach, I was both nervous and excited to begin my journey of self-change.
Over the last five years, I had an emotional downward spiral and started losing a sense of purpose in life. Nothing could motivate me and I felt overwhelmed with life’s daily challenges. One day I woke up and decided that I wanted a change. Enough was enough – I needed to take back control of my life. The issue was that I didn’t know where and how to begin. That’s when I came across Antonia’s page. Everything I read on her page was speaking to me; finding life events and choices challenging, struggling to feel any different, wanting to see things differently? Yes, yes and yes.
My first few sessions were eye-opening. Due to Antonia’s down to earth and empathetic nature, I felt safe and completely at ease sharing my immediate thoughts, struggles and experiences with her. Through deep conversation, we focused on clarifying where I was in my life. For the first time, I was able to have a sense of awareness about myself by delving into my emotions. It felt as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders and I was seeing things with a fresh pair of eyes.
I was taught multiple methods on how to identify self-inflicted obstacles such as exploring the multiple selves theory which allowed me to learn more about myself and what triggers certain behaviour. Recognising this was the first step in learning how to effectively adapt to challenging situations and changes in my life. Antonia supported me with tools such as breathing and grounding techniques to aid in this process.
We then identified my goals and what I wanted in life. For example, in the past, it was always difficult for me to stay motivated to exercise as I believed it was an unnecessary and uncomfortable task. However, after exploring different energy movements with Antonia, I finally was able to associate exercise with something enjoyable to look forward to. It was a liberating feeling having goals and knowing how I would try and get there.
This process has enabled me to develop a mindset of self-acceptance. As I continue to navigate through life, I will take with me all that I have learnt from my sessions with Antonia.
Antonia is an incredible life coach. We have been on a rollercoaster of a journey together. Antonia has steered me through the most difficult times of my life. From being bullied at work, fighting cancer, learning how to be myself again, to starting up my own successful business. Antonia’s life skills are unique in the way that she doesn’t give you the answers you are looking to hear. She guides you through the journey, gently helping you to find your own answers. But if you lose your way, she’s always there to help you find the right path.I would recommend Antonia to anyone facing life’s challenges. She has really helped me to stand on my own two feet and walk through life’s challenges with confidence in myself.
I reached out to Antonia after feeling a little lost. I originally planned to see her short term to help me navigate some challenging waters, but soon into our sessions, I realised we were uncovering some deep-rooted issues that were causing distress and discomfort in my life. As to be expected, these sessions could be difficult at times, but Antonia provided a space safe for me to visit these emotions and approached it with a delicate balance of being firm, structured yet empathetic. I always left our sessions feeling lighter and calmer.
Antonia is an incredibly intuitive, caring and approachable practitioner. Every week, I looked forward to our sessions that grounded me and gave me perspective. I have learnt the tools to manage my emotions and now speak to myself with much more kindness and compassion. It’s of course an on-going journey but I am truly grateful for Antonia’s support in bringing me back into balance and value the relationship that we developed.
Antonia helped me with work-related coaching over six sessions which we broadened out to encompass general life coaching in a supportive way. She took a creative approach – which appealed to me as a writer – and got me thinking laterally. In one particularly useful session, she helped me prepare for an author talk and Q&A session about which I felt very nervous. The Q&A couldn’t have gone better in the end, thanks to Antonia’s help. I was delighted.
I found working with Antonia to be an incredibly positive experience; I didn’t really know what to expect with the process. After 4 sessions, with Antonia using different methods to explore my issues, I now feel more equipped and confident in myself. Antonia provides the tools for you to unlock what you need help with. She is very kind, calm and patient and I felt very safe/secure at all times, even though the work sometimes made me feel uncomfortable. I would recommend Antonia to anyone looking to make some changes, both in their professional and personal lives, but who feel they don’t have the tools to be able to move forward and implement those changes.
When I contacted Antonia for guidance, I wasn’t sure exactly what ‘life coaching’ was or how it was done. Maybe hug a tree and agree an ‘action list’ based on some career’s advice. I wasn’t expecting it to be so personal or to have to journey so far ‘up stream’ in order to progress down stream. I found some of the sessions upsetting but I always felt supported by Antonia, and through that process I have reached a calmer, clearer place. From here I have started to work out what I want to do and how I might do it. I am grateful for Antonia’s sense of humour, compassion and ’guidance by question’. I’ve yet to hug a tree.
I came to Antonia as I was a coach struggling with a perceived sense of introversion and I felt that it was holding me back in my business. How little did I know at that time what that would lead to! Immediately on the first session and with the utmost professionalism, Antonia challenged me and really got straight to the heart of the matter, which helped me to open up and face some very raw stuff that had been holding me back for years. A number of sessions later and I have now made some incredible shifts in my mindset which has allowed me to re examine my authenticity, understand my co-dependencies, be kinder to myself, also to stop hiding and be stronger in what I want and need in life. Each session I come away with a huge amount of reflection, a sense of new energy and I am incredibly grateful to Antonia for helping me to rebuild myself and move forward.
My experience with Antonia has been wholly positive, and the coaching process in general has been incredibly insightful. I find myself using some of the coaching processes in my day to day life, and believe the process as a whole is hugely beneficial to those who engage with it.
A family member recommended I visit Antonia when I was looking for a career change and wanting to start my own business but felt unsure how to go about it or what it might look like for me. I found the process incredibly illuminating. I went into the first session with nothing but jumbled thoughts and an idea of why I wanted to leave the industry I was in. An hour later I had a loosely formed idea of what that business could look like – the best way I can describe it was it felt like Antonia helped me to collect and funnel all of my jumbled, half-formed ideas into a ball that I could use as a starting point. During the following sessions Antonia helped me to explore the ideas around starting a business, primarily what might be holding me back and why. I am so grateful for this, and feel the investment in myself was well worth it and incredibly insightful. I recently booked a one-off session when I was struggling at work with a colleague. Having tried to raise my frustrations within my team to no avail, I turned to Antonia and the coaching process to help me explore and understand why I was finding working with this particular colleague challenging and how I could reframe it personally to form a more harmonious working relationship. Antonia helped me to view it more objectively and in turn helped me to be less affected at work and happier in my employment.
After just three coaching sessions with Antonia, I started to experience a dramatic shift in the quality of my life. A couple of months later, when our process drew to a close, she had successfully aided me in the untangling of a deep psychological knot that I’d been struggling with for years. The vast majority of my anxiety vanished in the process of working with her, and I could once again connect with myself and others in a more free and open fashion.
I originally went to Antonia with the intention of vigorously disciplining myself into becoming a “better” version of myself, but was ultimately relieved of the tension that came with believing I needed to be something other than who I was in the first place. As a result, I’ve started to take more actions – and develop habits and skills – that are actually congruent with who I am. I’m now happier with my direction in life and the way I relate to the world.
I got more from the sessions than I ever hoped for, so I highly recommend Antonia to anyone interested in managing psychological difficulties or seeking to unravel more of who they really are.
I found my experience with Antonia very calming. I adored her patience, understanding and non-judgemental approach. She is a great listener and observer and I felt she was doing a caring and thorough ‘job’ whilst maintaining a sense of being in the real world; in touch with life’s issues. Initially very worried about coming to her, I quickly found our meetings reassuring and she helped me through bereavement and other family issues and for that I am very grateful.
I think I’ve become a better listener, better at grasping the emotions of others, better at thinking things through and what matters may mean to others, and importantly, I’m much more content with my own company; calmer and more at one.
As an older lady there can be a sense of done it, got it, I’m ok, what can I learn? The journey of course continues. I was very nervous about facing Antonia, feeling I should be fine, that I have life experiences to fall back on, but the unravelling has been a revelation and has left a calmness for which I am very grateful. Older folks should not be nervous of taking that first step, they will be bathed in gentleness.
My time working with Antonia has been a really important time and has brought about genuine, positive change. What has been most key for me is taking the opportunity to accept the current situation and work forward more confidently having evaluated the things I had let hold me back. I’ve gained a lot of confidence through this process and I’ll be checking in with Antonia in the future.
Antonia’s coaching style is inspiring, and this has given me a new perspective. As a result, I feel more comfortable with myself. Challenging and supporting, Antonia’s excellent rapport skills held the space for me to explore and I found out it’s not the outcome but the journey. I am now more self-aware, focused and relaxed.
I went to Antonia looking for direction with my creative business and she began by establishing a place in which I could see myself more clearly, a space in which I was able to express myself more easily. She sometimes reflects back to me questions that I avoid confronting; stuck places are acknowledged and like knots, are worked loose or unravelled. This all helps me become alive to my core strengths, which Antonia uses as reference points, enabling me to discover for myself, ways to move forward both on a practical level and psychologically.
Always, at the end of a session with Antonia, however uncertain I feel at the beginning of it, I walk away with a confirmed sense and often a new understanding of my bearing. This is integral to my ability to keep centred and on track.
I saw Antonia for six short sharp sessions during a period where I was feeling lost. Spending an hour a week talking about ‘me’ to someone who actively listens helped me process my tangled thoughts and I always woke up the next morning feeling clearer about stuff ! Antonia doesn’t go easy on you. Her direct questions allow you to safely explore why, what and how you found yourself in her company. She’s an accomplished coach and a master at finding the answers to your questions which, of course, you already know you just need help working them out!
Antonia finds out about your life, pulls it apart and then discusses what is important to you and why. She can be compassionate but will also help you face up to the issues. Each session looked at different areas of my life and without exception something significant came out of each one. I put in place some of the action which helped to clear the depression/fog/burden (whatever you want to call it) in my life. Don’t go along to Antonia if you just want cosy chats, be prepared to have your life changed. My journey has not finished but life has certainly improved.
Antonia is very attentive in her listening. She encouraged me to explore my strengths, not by suggestion but by realisation, and also to realise that some of my perceived weaknesses were perhaps not so.
Antonia is very approachable and professional in her dealings with clients and gets right to the heart of a subject, saying just a couple of words that make you think, giving you feedback that hits the spot, throwing into the conversation an astute observation that you might have been ignoring for years.
During Life Coaching sessions with Antonia, I have become illuminated to myself in a way that does not easily translate into words. I expected some gentle probing on her part and considering on mine. Antonia’s insightful and incisive questions elicited keen feeling responses. I have the sense of a deep shift occurring. I started the sessions with the aim of becoming able to identify my skills. Something beyond that is happening; I am now beginning to identify myself. I am moving towards claiming (or perhaps recognising) a ‘me’ shaped space in the world. Antonia is totally present, allows silence and shows humour and empathy. There is always a feeling of having time and space.
Coaching with Antonia really helped me at a time when I was feeling lost and overwhelmed. Her approach is a powerful combination of insight, intuition and compassion which really helped me clarify the changes I needed to make in my life. I felt she provided the space to reflect without letting me get lost in the mire! I would highly recommend her as a coach.
Antonia tangibly helped me with figuring out some fundamental questions in my life. The sessions were challenging, at times, but always rewarding … I came away with a new insight each time. Antonia achieved this by taking my views into account, and her approach, excercises and follow ups felt custom tailored to me. For convenience I chose to use telephone coaching which is never going to be as good as a face to face conversation, but the sessions were still insightful and rewarding due to Antonia’s skills. Anyone curious about the potential should try a session, I am confident they won’t regret it.
I quickly realised that I wanted Antonia to coach me regularly as a client. I really love our sessions together. She is very patient and extremely perceptive. Whatever issues I have brought to a session, I have left feeling supported and much lighter and happier, often with a clarity and purpose that was lacking previously. As a coach myself, I am fully aware of the benefits that coaching can bring. I have found that Antonia is brilliant in particular at listening deeply and observing and commenting on patterns of speech. By reflecting accurately and asking unexpected questions, she has facilitated the unpicking of some knotty practical and emotional issues for which I am extremely grateful. I can’t really recommend Antonia highly enough.
There’s always a million reasons to not do something and most of them are good reasons. Somehow I need to imagine my way past them. Coaching with Antonia takes me into a bigger picture, another perspective, to reconnect with what I’m really good at; the things I feel clear and passionate about. Once I get back into seeing and feeling that, the million reasons shrink. She’s a companion who’s sympathetic, believes in me and will provoke me, so I have the courage to see farther. It’s also good to have support in noticing my habits of thinking, feeling and acting. Once spotted they often seem funny; they become less absolute, and I have more choices.
Embarking on the coaching process was quite nerve racking as it marked a deliberate move on my part towards change from the situation I was in. Antonia has been very supportive throughout and I really appreciate her non-judgemental approach. I like the way she brings a little from her own life and experience into the sessions, it helps me to think of her as a real person (possibly with challenges of her own). I feel that the coaching process has allowed me to make some real changes to my outlook and the way I see the world and my situation.
I saw Antonia regularly over a period of nearly 12 months to support me in making the transition from leaving an established career to setting up on my own as a creative freelancer. It was helpful having a fixed time in the diary – not only as something concrete to work towards, but also because it made identifying objectives and keeping up to date with progress easier. Antonia is very organised – she takes full notes of each session, which she regularly refers to during subsequent sessions. There was ample time to explore many different areas throughout the sessions – the format was never fixed in stone, so it could evolve. However Antonia made sure the sessions were relevant and directed. The approach varied each session depending on the objective, and this variety of approach helped identify and unlock other areas for investigation. The sessions were always constructive and positive, working on many levels – from the practical to the conceptual. I finished the sessions with a clearer sense of my own identity and abilities, and a clearer sense of direction for the future. I would definitely recommend Antonia to anyone searching for positive ways forward in whatever situations they find themselves in.
I recommend life coaching with Antonia. I was sceptical about life coaching. How could some coaching possibly help me I wondered? Gradually, I realised this indeed is possibly what I needed, to help clarify a few things in my life. After some hesitance I went along to an informal taster session with Antonia and was struck by her sincerity and listening skills and decided on regular sessions. I had no idea what to bring to a life coaching session at first. My mind was fishing for all those unfinished or never begun plans, then I realised my present dilemma was indeed the place to start. Things begun to unravel through Antonia’s sharp observations of my body language. I found I could put words to these feelings after some probing. I always come away from each session with some kind of task to resolve, with tools to help. My decisions and thoughts are now manifesting in a more cohesive way. I find the sessions quite intense in a positive way and from each session I get a sense of progress. It’s not a quick fix! I look forward to more coaching.
I would say that I am a fairly self-aware person, and pretty practical but the time with Antonia helped me more forward with much more confidence about the road ahead – the road I wanted to create for myself. I had been moving in a direction for a long time which was fulfilling in many ways but it was often tied in with feelings of needing to support others and helped them move forward. Working with Antonia wasn’t just about visioning a different life, it was about looking at the steps to make that life happen. I remember on one of the sessions coming home and feeling like a cork had literally popped out of my head and my creative thoughts had started flowing again. Antonia brought me back to what my values were – what was really important for me in life – and how crucially, I had the power to choose in many ways what the next move was. It was much easier to do now that I could peel back all the ‘what if’s and look at what was and what could be, by simply choosing a path and take responsibility for that decision.
Antonia is warm, empathetic, professional and unafraid of helping you move into new territory at your pace or in my case, just peeling back everything I was trying to solve and reminding me of what was actually important and who I want to be. I would highly recommend Antonia to anyone feeling at a crossroads, or who may feel the they are stagnating, or who needs some courage to make some changes or who wants to explore whether they are moving on a path that is authentic and about them and their talents. Good luck!
I decided to book a consultation with Antonia back in August 2015. I was feeling overwhelmed and frustrated with my career path and needed clarity of thought to help me move forward and feel happy again. I felt immediately comfortable talking to Antonia and this feeling of ease has remained during the past seven months. During this time Antonia has helped me face a number of barriers that seem to be preventing me from seeking happiness. Antonia has patiently and gently supported me work through these knots and with the use of simple yet hugely powerful strategies, she has shown me my own negative patterns of behaviour and how they have at times shaped my thoughts and hang-ups. I cannot thank Antonia enough for being a blanket of support and kindness whilst I struggled with the idea of changing jobs. Here I am seven months after meeting Antonia with a new job and a real sense of acceptance and happiness in myself and my closest relationships. I really feel connected to Antonia and I have really valued our fortnightly sessions. These sessions have given me confidence to move forward in my life.[
Before attending my first session, I was apprehensive as I didn’t quite know what to expect or how I would gel with Antonia. I had never embarked on sessions like this before but after meeting and talking to Antonia, I found her easy to talk to. Antonia is very calm and patient and has an ability to put you at ease very quickly and dispel any fears.
Prior to attending the sessions with Antonia, my thoughts were muddled and I felt quite pessimistic. I had just come through a long-term illness which had brought on mild depression and polarised my already present high stress levels. Antonia provoked thought and self-challenge of current behaviours which allowed me to think about why I behave the way I had. This had a positive effect on me as I made conscious efforts to think differently which enabled me to deal with my stress and make steps to change my situation for the positive.
Through working with Antonia, I am in the process of changing career but she has enabled me to enjoy my family life and think towards the future and not to compare myself to events in the past. Also you realise that when you are feeling the most emotionally vulnerable, you are still strong.
Antonia and I worked on a specific business case over 6 sessions. She is articulate, robust in challenging and a great listener. She helped me to think clearly in articulating my business issue with the result of achieving positive outcome. She helped me to keep the bigger picture whilst being flexible enough to support me in exploring many areas. I can highly recommend Antonia as coach and also as a mentor coach.
I met Antonia to start Life Coaching, not fully understanding what to expect! I thought I knew a lot about myself having deep self awareness already, however I am always up for a challenge! Through exploration, Antonia challenged my intentions of remaining in patterns of behaviour, and with further supportive challenges, Antonia helped me understand and identify that these were limiting my potential for further personal growth. I have experienced real life change with Antonia’s clear direction, accepting now that it is I who holds responsibility for my future outcomes in life, not my perceptions of what others think.
After six years in a full-on, challenging job, my body and mind suffered ‘burn out’. I blacked out one night of a particularly tricky weekend and, when I woke up the next morning my hearing was impaired and over the next few days loud tinnitus developed.
I struggled on in with this for six months, feeling increasingly worn out and demoralised. When I finally handed in my notice, my hearing improved literally overnight, but I was still experiencing strange noises and sensations in my ear, I felt wrung out, shattered and very low. I felt that I had failed. I had loved my job and felt defined by it, but was also terrified that my energy levels (always so high) would never come back.
I needed someone to help me come to terms with what had happened, to help me explore what to do next. I needed someone to help me recognise who I was now and who I might become. I found Antonia. She described herself as someone who had sympathy with creatives and that resonated with me.
On my first visit, Antonia pointed out, I sat hunched over on the chair, constantly fiddling with my ear. Tears readily fell and I felt miserable. On my last visit, about four months later I was relaxed, gesticulating and smiling, feeling that here was someone who cared, in a very professional way and who had helped me to slowly come to terms with what happened, had some pointers for the future and, more importantly the belief that I could take ‘time for me’ and explore a future.
It’s not like counselling – which is quite a lot of navel gazing I found, and allowing yourself to be sad. Antonia challenges, asks really well thought out questions, really perceptive questions that have you thinking “that’s a good one!”. She sets ‘home work’ – just small tasks, quite fun tasks sometimes. Once we did a visualisation, and another – a ‘being in someone else’s shoe’s’ role play which my heart dropped at – but it was actually really good at seeing things from the ‘problem person’s’ point of view. I found myself really looking forward to the sessions – a metaphorical hand holding.
You might think a life coach will be a super smooth, intimidating person but Antonia is not like that. Sure, she has her head screwed on the right way and seems to be happy in her own skin; but she has lived and has had her own issues to deal with – making her really empathise with you. Oh, and she has a lovely cat!
I now have a great mix of paid work, voluntary work, quality me and family time …. I have my energy back, most of my enthusiasm (still early days)– and my ear is much, much quieter![/vc_testimonial][vc_testimonial author=”Tim”]I saw Antonia for six short sharp sessions during a period where I was feeling lost. Spending an hour a week talking about ‘me’ to someone who actively listens helped me process my tangled thoughts and I always woke up the next morning feeling clearer about stuff. Antonia doesn’t go easy on you. Her direct questions allow you to safely explore why, what and how you found yourself in her company. She’s an accomplished coach and a master at finding the answers to your questions which, of course, you already know you just need help working them out!
I reached a point in my life where the path that I had always expected I would follow proved to be the wrong option for me. I had to decide what to do next. I realised that the wrong way to approach this was to just think about alternative careers. What I really needed was to understand who I am and what drives me – and from that position of knowledge, work out what to do with my life. Antonia stood out as someone who is able to help the whole me, and she has proved to be an excellent listener, questioner and mentor. Her sessions have enabled me to identify so many new things about myself, and open new doors and ideas. I now see that one of the key drivers in my life was in fact a destructive influence, and I had based it on little or no logic. I now recognise a number of my personal qualities and characteristics (that I always thought of as weaknesses) are the strengths that set me apart and make me valuable. And I now feel that I can talk to friends, colleagues and others as a far more authentic person. I used to slip so easily into talking about the life I thought I should be living rather than the one that I felt in my heart was real. In sharing this with friends, I realise that I am not unusual. Almost all of them want to know more, feel more certain, or feel they have a choice
I initially contacted Antonia because my life had reached a crossroads and I was unsure of which path to take and of what aspects of myself I would need to draw upon in order to move forwards. I would say that I am not usually the kind of person who seeks help and advice about making important decisions and how I live, so initiating a meeting was a bit daunting and outside my comfort zone. Antonia quickly understood that much of what we were exploring and the way we were exploring it was new to me and did not come naturally. She never pushes, only suggests different approaches and ways of thinking. In this way, I have been gently encouraged to think about entrenched ideas in many imaginative and sometimes surprising new ways but all very lightly, hugely sensitively, and, where appropriate, with a sense of humour. Antonia listens incredibly carefully and does not let a stray remark pass without challenging it; this opens up explorations of the way you think and the obstacles that you put in your own way, just in the language of your own thoughts. She has helped me to see and address aspects of myself which hold me back. I have learned a lot about how I respond to individual situations as well as to more general aspects of my life. And I have learned a lot about my default positions and automatic assumptions about myself and others and how I might adjust and change. It has been a challenging and fulfilling process and Antonia’s thoughtful, creative guidance and generosity of spirit and person have been remarkable. I would warmly recommend her to anyone in a similar position to my own.
I went to Antonia because I could not see my way ahead. I had got into a circle of thinking ‘I could, should, ought, can’t’ and I was going round in circles! I went with a degree of apprehension as I do not find it easy to talk about myself. However, Antonia put me at ease and is a great listener. Through gentle questioning and exercises we explored the reasons why I was thinking as I did, and the barriers stopping me from moving forward to a more fulfilling future. Antonia has been so helpful in this process and, working together, I am clear about my way ahead, am able to to choose what I want to do and confident to do so. And, above all, happy!