Who am I? My journey so far…

How do I start to answer that question? We are all a mix of everything in our lives. The This & That not Or. During my lifetime I have experienced ups and downs (and still do). Changes I designed and those forced upon me, but as in all our cases, they make us who we are today. Here are some of my experiences that have made me who I am today.

  • Becoming a mum

  • Leaving the “safety” of a c. 20 year corporate career

  • Setting up a business

  • Getting signed off work as I mentally couldn’t cope

  • Running a marathon

  • Dropping out of uni

  • Moving to a town where I knew no-one

  • Having a second child 

  • Being the youngest of three siblings (and the only girl) 

  • Working for a d*ckhead boss

  • Being a daughter of an ill parent 140 miles away

  • Hiking Machu Picchu

  • Returning to work after maternity leave

  • Being made redundant

  • Having a promotion

  • Being passed over for promotion

  • Teaching myself the guitar

  • Leading an awesome team

  • Being really confident in my abilities

  • Having crushing self doubt and low self esteem​


How I got into coaching

When I think back on my life, a thread that has been woven throughout it was one of making people happy. From my “Singing in the Rain” shows on the back patio at age three, to complimenting new haircuts, clothes or other changes to my colleagues’ appearance, having people around me feeling good about themselves has been my mode operandi.


The eagle eyed of you, or maybe Google’s robots will have seen above that I left my corporate career of almost 20 years to set up my coaching business. So why did I do it? How did I get to that place? You may also have noticed a point about mental health, and the d*ckhead boss. They are related. Having been made redundant not long after returning from maternity leave, I found a new job working for a boss who was a bit of a d*ck. And he wanted to create lots of replicas d*cks around him. God is my witness, I tried to be one of his little d*ck cronies, but I just couldn’t. I wasn’t a d*ck. I really struggled, trying to copy the “behaviours” that were expected in order to succeed.


Step in a company called Aspire and the training course “Inspirational Leadership”. In just two days, I experienced epiphany after epiphany and realised it wasn’t me being no good at ‘leadership’, I was trying to squeeze myself into a type of leadership that just wasn’t me. It didn’t feel good. It didn’t align with my values or beliefs in how people relate to each other or like to work. So I just needed to choose my own style of leadership and crack on. Easier said than done, but a seed had been well & truly planted.


I put off any formal training for coaching, as a colleague of mine had become a coach and I felt like I was just thinking of it to get on the bandwagon. But the desire never left me. I also had a burning desire to be my own boss, to be the master of my destiny without having other peoples’ fingers in my pie (so to speak). 


Eventually I started to look at the various coaching training schools and courses. Found a free two-day taster session, booked the days off work and secured my place. After doing this, I spoke to another recently qualified coach and she hadn’t heard very good reports from this school. So I decided to look around. I found a course and just reading the course material made me cry. When I looked at the starting dates for the course, they were the same two days I’d already booked off. Goosebumps all over. I was in. And that is when I found Animas School of Coaching, and studied and passed my Diploma in Transformational Coaching. 


I changed jobs again, and continued to work in the corporate world, steadily reducing my hours there and increasing my coaching hours, setting up my coaching business on the side, until June 2019 I finished my contract and set up full time as an entrepreneur / coach / business owner. Squeaky bum time.



What gets me out of bed in the morning?

When I first set up my coaching business, I had a moral dilemma. I couldn’t separate my belief that coaching was elitist, only for the wealthy, from the fact that people who may be least able to afford it, could probably do with it most and this sat on top of my need to create a financially viable business for myself. This really sat heavy on my heart. 


Since then, thanks to collaboration with other coaches and talking it through, I now have charity coaching sessions available, lower priced group work, and some free stuff because no matter where you are now, I believe anyone and everyone could benefit from coaching.  Aside from making coaching accessible, I have some other pretty lofty missions I want to achieve through my business. And here they are.


I want to live in a world where……

    • Coaching is mainstream

    • Coaching is a normal thing to do to help with self awareness, living a full life & pushing humanity forward

    • Coaching is accessible for those who need it most

    • Work works

    • People are in control of their career in a more purposeful way

    • Work is one of the ways you contribute to the world, not the only way (and not a definition of who you are)

    • Entrepreneurship is as favourable as corporate work 

    • We look after, talk about, make allowances for each others’ mental health as well as physical

    • Equality, diversity & inclusion are real


Now I do not claim to be anywhere near making these a reality yet, but I do have a plan on how I can move closer to them, and that’s a start. Aside from what I want to achieve with my business, I’ve also worked on my Values which show HOW I’d like to go about achieving my missions. 


Here are my 5 Business Values and what they mean to me.

  • HUMAN: We are all humans here, with more similarities than difference and each have different needs & wants. I am not perfect or a robot – I can get things wrong & be OK with that

  • UNIQUE: I’m me & do things my own way. I draw on my experience of life, work & business to create ways to help others through theirs

  • PLAYFUL: I don’t take myself too seriously. I’m a professional but my there is a lightness to my work. I have fun at work and relish challenges.

  • FUTURISTIC: I am innovative in my approach & investigate new ways of thinking, working or new technologies to help me better serve my clients

  • CATALYST: I create the spark to ignite change in my clients, my business & the world



Learning & adapting

I am very proud of the content of my bookshelves. I also have a well used audible subscription. And I have signed up for lifetime access to courses covering a range of topics from business, to financial abundance to reclaiming my life. What I’m trying to say is how important learning is to me. I think it always has been. I remember my exasperated mum buying a book for Christmas called 1,000 questions and answers, to give herself a bit of a break from my exhausting inquisitive nature.  For me learning isn’t just an absorption of knowledge, its taking the information and trying it out. Is it helpful? Does it fit in my life and get me closer to my goals? If yes, let’s keep it. No? Move on. 


In the latter part of my corporate career I worked in Digital Product Development. Looking at how customers were using websites and how I could make it easier for them to complete the things they wanted to do online. A bit like coaching really. Clients come to me, explain what’s going on for them, and we work together to make it as easy a possible to get where they want to go. 


Nowadays I use my Product Development knowledge, skills and practices to help optimise the lives, careers and businesses of my clients.



  • Data - What’s going on? Where are we now? 

  • Goal - What are we trying to achieve?

  • Tactics - What’s the easiest way we can try to get there?

  • Review - Did it work? What did we learn?

  • Adapt - What else can we try?

  • Repeat …….



How coaching can help / why people come for coaching
  • What is coaching? Journey from A to B

  • Confidence / Self Esteem / Self Limiting Beliefs

  • What next?

  • Transitions

  • Self Awareness


Who I like to work with…..
  • Want to be the best versions of themselves, not a cheap copy of someone else

  • They don’t settle. The are disrupters. The What Iffers. The Why Not Try Crew. 

  • The people who just need to be pointed in the right direction and they are off living the life of their dreams.

  • People who respect my time, skills & expertise as well as their own

  • People who want to make the most of our time together by prepping for sessions, doing their homework and sucking the marrow out of life

  • Want to break out of self imposed barriers or cages of what is possible for them

  • Want to feel good about themselves, their lives - both who they are and who they can be.

  • Who know they are in control of their ship and their course


In summary

My coaching business is my life’s work. Its a culmination of my life & experience. But this is not it. It’s not a finished product. It evolves and adapts like a living, breathing being. In the words of one of my greatest role models, Dr Maya Angelou: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better”. So, I promise you there is more to come. Some are in the planning stages as I type now, and others I’ve yet to dream up. So watch this space.

Take back your power. Design the life of your dreams. And have some fun along the way.

If you’re interested in working with me, book your free coaching consultation.


Helen x

© 2021 Helen Unwin Coaching   

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