[Day in the Life of a Coach] Interview with ICA Graduate Coach, Tracey Tischler
(Confidence Coach, UNITED STATES)
ICA Coach Tracey Tischler Does It All!
Hailing from the Twin Cities, MN in the US, Tracey Tischler is the very definition of eclectic!
She has worked as a model for local and national commercial and print; as a TV anchor and news reporter; paralegal; professional makeup artist and stylist; and licensed esthetician.
And the path has not always been a smooth one for this divorced, single mom. Tracey utilizes her own growth and challenges to support others going through the bumps and thumps that life gives us.
Currently Tracey leverages her interests, curiosity, talents and experience in her coaching and as owner and Chief Talent Officer of All Models Agency, which represents talent from the Twin Cities/Minneapolis area. She also is an author of children’s book “Heroes in The Sandbox” and an ebook, “The Insider’s Guide to Makeup Application: From Eyebrows to Skincare and Everything In-Between.”
And, no. There is no typical day for Tracey and that’s what she loves about the coaching lifestyle!
Interview with Merci Miglino
Merci: It’s another day in the a life of a coach. I’m Merci Miglino and today I am delighted to bring you Tracey Tischler from the twin cities of Minnesota specifically St. Paul. Welcome Tracey!
Tracey: Hi Merci, thanks for having me, I’m excited!
Merci: Yeah, I mean wow, of all the people that come through the doors of ICA, there are so many different backgrounds, and so many different aspects of what brought them to coaching. But Tracey has one of the most eclectic backgrounds that I have ever seen in someone who pursued coaching. She worked as a model in both commercial and print and as a TV News Anchor! How jealous am I.
Merci: Paralegal. We shared that, official make-up artist and now a talent agent. She’s written a couple of books. And this is my favorite. She joined the roller derby at age 45! I’m totally in awe. I have a feeling Tracey has been kicking some butt her whole life but for now Tracey, tell us how did you come to coaching?
Tracey: Funny when you introduce me like that. I don’t think of myself like that. So it’s kind of interesting to revisit those things and hear it like that. So thank you!
And coming to coaching … as you were saying that, I was thinking back to the path to coaching… I actually grew up with panic attacks. I didn’t know what they were at that time. Now you can google that, and actually my sister passed away, when I was 28 and I became agoraphobic for a while. So for what I do now, it’s funny that, through that I learned that life is so short. Now that’s a kick start to a kick-ass life and that even through the fear you have to push through it, and I think that coaching is the great vehicle to help people get there.
Merci: Sure, yeah. It’s interesting because sometimes it is those kinds of experiences that really puts things in perspective.
Tracey: And I don’t think people if they see me now with what I am doing like the roller derby and stuff like that, could ever even imagine that I had those kinds of problems.
Merci: So tell me, how did you get into coach training, what made you decide to sign up and get trained as a coach?
Tracey: Well you said we both shared being a paralegal. Actually when I graduated from highschool, I’m 50 now and so that was back in the 80s and I wanted to be a police officer.
Tracey: Because I knew I was athletic and they were like, “Why won’t you go and be a secretary?” And everybody was afraid that you’d get hurt and stuff and so I did what is more expected of me. Then I became a paralegal and I got my degree, then I took the LSAT, and while I was at it I decided that being a lawyer was the last thing I wanted to be. And I think I went that avenue to help people.
Tracey: I was following what other people expected of me, instead of what my heart was telling me to do. Then my sister passed away, my brother-in-law passed away, and then my dad passed away. And first I was angry, I didn’t know how to handle it. Then I realized, like a kick in the pants that life is so short and I started doing things, studying things that I was interested in. And I studied personal training, I became a licensed esthetician, which then brought me into the make-up artist role. In all these roles especially when I was a make-up artist, with people sitting in my chair, they would tell me things that they probably won’t tell most people. I kind of considered it like life coaching.
Tracey: So a lot of times, we coach over the phone, and you can’t see the other person, and you’re more willing to be open with them, talk to them, and especially somebody who doesn’t know you but is trained to help you.
Merci: It’s so true isn’t it? It’s like the anonymity of it, and the fact that the person knows you don’t really care one way or another, you’re just there to listen. And it’s not that they are uncaring, it’s just that you’re an objective third party. I definitely know what you are talking about.
Tracey: And I think if you pursue life coaching, it’s something that is instilled in you. I don’t think people really do it for money. It’s more about something in you. People would tell me stuff, even when they were not in my make-up chair and trust me with things. And I think it’s because I was never judgemental. We all have things that we want other people to know, and want to help with, and that’s what moved me. And I’ll tell you a story and it’s kind of a personal story, but it’s funny. The story happened about thirteen years ago. I remember specifically what I was doing. I was in a flux in my own life, and kind of going through a really hard time, and I went out with a girlfriend one night, and these people came up to me and there were these really odd situations, like I went to get a drink at a bar, there was this man in his 70s and I sat next to him, and all of the sudden we started talking and he started telling me all these personal things like how his wife has passed away, and I was just there for 20 minutes talking to this man. Then we went to another place where this woman was sitting next to me, was obviously intoxicated and she started talking to me. She told me that her best memory was when she ran the mile in under 3 minutes. She was probably in her 50s or so, and this happened when she was a teenager. And it’s funny, I think when you’re open, people can tell that and they trust you with stuff, even complete strangers like them. And I ended up going home and I prayed out loud, “God, what’s going on?” It’s just this weird night and I just heard, “because I send them to you.” And it’s funny because it still moves me because I can still hear that. And so I think, as life coaches, that is how we should look at it because not every client is our client.
Merci: That’s so profound. I come from that catholic school background as well. I used to think of it as a calling, a vocation. We have many words for it: purpose, life mission. It doesn’t matter the words but it really is something that wired in us. You almost can’t help but find some way there. And what I love about your story is that it can look many different ways. A paralegal can be called to help a certain segment of the population. The person who does my hair and make-up, my spa treatment, is called to help people in that way. And I think it’s really true that almost without an exception, coaches say that they feel like they’ve been that person that everybody goes to, looks up to, even though they’re not living the perfect life, and they don’t have all the answers. But what they have is a desire, a calling, whatever you want to call it, to help people. And I think that’s very true for most coaches and I love the way you said that.
Tracey: Thank you. And I think too that sometimes, people who feel moved, they’re called to be a life coach. Sometimes hold themselves back because they think, “Oh my life is so crazy. In fact who am I to help other people?” But that’s exactly why they should. I had anxiety, panic attacks and cystic acne growing up. And all those things at the time seems like they were so hard. And now looking back, it helped me empathize and understand with people going through situations like that. So it doesn’t matter where you are in your life. If you’re life is chaos, you can maybe help people even more because you understand where they are coming from. Sometimes it’s a lot easier, and I know this from experience, to help other people than it is to help yourself. And I’ve had life coaches over the years.
Merci: I think that’s very true. And I also think that coaching is one of the very few professions that you cannot help but grow when you learn to coach. When you learn and practice observing without judgement. Looking at who the person is and not their story, not who said what to who, but who is this person in this situation. When you practice that, you just can’t help but have heightened self-awareness, and as a result, growth. And you’re not even working at it, it’s a very remarkable profession in that regard.
Tracey: And I think too, when I had done coaching with ICA, I said to myself and to other people, it was worth it, even just for myself. Even if I never coached anybody else, for me personally, it was worth it. I’ve grown leaps and bounds. And I’m more self-aware now through learning through ICA. If I can coach other people, I can coach myself.
Merci: Yeah, exactly. It’s really great! So your life long pursuit of wanting to understand yourself and others and being there, and being called to help led you to coaching. And now I want to ask you, in this incredible array of things that you do, what is a typical day in your life?
Tracey: Well all those things that you mention that I do, those are all my life. So I own a small talent agency, I’m a licensed esthetician, I’m a professional make-up artist, hair-stylist. I do that. I’m a life coach, and I also work contract for a law firm. I still do it. And I’m a single mom. And somehow it’s funny, I created this life that just all works together. Some people look at it and was like, “Do you ever sleep?” And I’m like, “I do.” Sometimes I feel lazy even though I’m still working somehow. But it’s everything that moves me. You know what I mean? I get a little bit of something from all those things.
Merci: Yeah, they say when you’re inspired, you don’t need motivation. And I really think that that’s true. Especially somebody who juggles a variety of things. Like you say. Every one of them feeds you in a way.
Tracey: And everyday isn’t the same. I think because I know myself, I can’t sit in a desk for very long. I used to work in a law firm. I had a contract with them and they called me the ambassador of the law firm because I would have to get up and walk around and talk to people. Because I’m just not a sitter. So it’s perfect for me because everyday is different, either I’m at the law firm, or either I’m doing hair and make-up, which I love because it’s so creative, or life coaching. My intention for 2016 now is to focus more on the life coaching because it’s what I love. I just want to see other people move towards what they wanted to do and their life.
Merci: I can see that. So it’s funny. It’s seems like you work in the home, out of the the home. You’re around people, but you also have this, I actually appreciate it more than I thought I would, the kind of “working in your pajamas”. And the variety. We talked a little bit before the call. We’re what Barbara Scheer, very interesting author and speaker, calls “dabblers”. It’s people with a spectrum of interests. I know we share this, you can’t be one thing and thank God, the world is changing to the point where that is a disadvantage almost. And when you are a dabbler, interested in a lot of things, your days tend to be not exactly the same. In which for me, I have to have the agility, the flexibility, and I think the one thing that it really does Tracey is, it reminds us to take care of ourselves. Because you’re not dragging yourself off into work, or have to be there at 9am. So if I have a day where I’m more tired, or I feel like I’d like to do an hour’s worth of yoga instead of 20 minutes, I can do that. And for me when I work for other people, full time, those were the first things that went away. So for me I noticed there’s an element of self-care in the variety and flexibility of the schedule.
Tracey: Thanks for bringing that up. I’ve been thinking about that recently because as life coaches, when you are moved to help other people, and I like to say, serving other people. I don’t see “servant” as a bad word. I like to serve people. That’s what I’m here for. A lot of times when you are moved and that’s how you are, you give a lot of yourself. And as life coaches, we’re hearing people, we’re helping to motivate them, and it can be draining, and so like you said, it’s very important to be self-aware of when you need to re-energize and take time for yourself. And have those people in your life that you know you can go to. Funny because through ICA, remember when it was said that when you have to coach people, because it’s hard to find people sometimes because you don’t know how to ask. And then the coaching people who are your friends, and your family. And I ended up, I coached two of my friends, and I can see why they say be aware because the one, because we were coached together, and then we were done with the coaching sessions, all of them. And then we’d start talking and she’d start talking, and it was like a coaching session. And when I started talking about me, I was like, “Wait a minutes, I liked it better when it was all about me.”
Tracey: And if you’re a life coach, you automatically just do it when you’re talking and people don’t realize it, and that’s why people like talking to you, because it’s about them.
Merci: And that is why even a coach needs a coach. I think that’s one of the biggest values of coaching that people don’t always see is the value of being seen, heard and understood. It’s just an incredible, incredible feeling. And it’s not just energizing, but affirming to people. You know it builds confidence.
Tracey: And that’s what we’re not getting because of this age, with social media. We’re so less connected. And to have somebody who has their full attention on you is almost unheard of nowadays.
Merci: Yeah. To have no agenda is pretty rare. So this leads to my final question. So Tracey, with all you know and what we talked about, I’m curious. If you can tell the world one thing about coaching, what would it be?
Tracey: What ICA did for me, it’s not only helping myself, or thinking about it as a job that is going to be my profession afterwards. Coaching and training has helped just in my daily life and will continue to help me for the rest of my life. It’s helped me be able to step out and really go for what I’m moved to do rather than going back to what I felt other people expected me to do. And you know when people meet me now, (we’ve talked about this a little bit before) you said, “Oh Tracey, you did this, you did that”. And I used to be kind of embarrassed with that. But those are all the things that I loved. And I was going to learn about them, which is a good thing. And now it’s the way you tell others how to perceive you. Now people say, “Wow you do a lot”. And I’m like “Yeah, who wouldn’t want to do make up and be a paralegal and a roller derby girl and a personal trainer?” And they’re like “Yeah, who wouldn’t?”
Tracey: So really if you’re apologizing of it already, you’re embarrassed of it, that’s how they’re going to perceive it. So if you walk in and you’re energized about it, and you know that those are your passions, and proud of it, and that’s how people will see you through your eyes.
Merci: Beautifully said. Wonderful. Thank you so much Tracey for spending this time on the day in the life of a coach.
Tracey: Yeah. I’m so glad I could share. Really, I tell everybody about ICA, I loved it. And I still, actually I took some classes last year just to hop on call.
Merci: Oh yeah! Well great! Thank you. Thank you so much!
Tracey: Thank you Merci.
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