Simplify Your Why

Fine. Tell Me About Yourself But Make It Snappy.

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chris life coach in hamilton

My name is Chris. I'm a Certified Life & Leadership Coach based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, where I live with my partner Lindsey and a Pug / Boston Terrier named Chugs.

I grew up thinking I wasn't good enough. My grade two teacher lovingly declared me stupid in front of the entire class. We each experience painful moments that reinforce negative beliefs in ourselves. The scary part is we start to believe them. We pull back, play it safe, blend in with the crowd. We drag around a suitcase of crappy beliefs and hold onto them until death do us part, unless we choose to face them. These ugly beliefs fueled by the noise in our lives can be difficult to drown out.

I've had plenty of opportunity to live my default life, but that doesn't interest me. I don't have to tolerate the life I have, even if it's good. I want great, magnificent, outstanding. I made a choice to live a remarkable life on my terms. Ultimately, this is a path that makes me a better leader and a more capable change maker. I don't have to settle and neither do you.

Simplify Your Why is my personal transformation. By simplifying things as much as possible, you start to take control of your circumstances. Simplify your actions, simplify the habits you are building, simplify the steps you take to overcome a problem. For the first time, I chose to stop lugging around a suitcase bursting with all my insecurities. Only in this way can you begin to build the momentum you need to move yourself forward towards a life on your terms.

Coaching challenged me to see opportunity when I felt stuck. I had a choice to make. Continue working for organizations that had their own sense of direction and values, or choose to live true to myself and help others do the same. The essence of Coaching lies in helping others unlock their potential.

You're already enrolled in the journey and I'm here to help you get out of your own way.


Here’s What I Believe

Everyone is capable of incredible change in their life, but we lack the belief required to make the leap. I believe Coaching awakens an awareness of your true potential. When you live a purposeful life of intention and meaning, you and those around you benefit from your willingness to dance with fear. Fear. It's what holds you back from a successful, prosperous life. Your best work isn't nothing, it's the heart of what you have to offer. Finding the long, difficult way is worth the journey, because it's the best way to get what you deserve.

Personal Stuff

Depression and anxiety were something I learned about in my mid-twenties. A late realization, that much of the previous decade had been a challenge with next to no coping skills. Once I had a diagnosis, I threw myself into finding out everything I could. It changed my life. Knowledge is choice when it comes to mental health. I made changes that keep my mental health manageable and one of my best assets. I watch my diet, exercise and keep tabs on my sleep. I share my story because I know anxiety and depression can be managed. They never go away but your ability to live a normal life is possible with the right resources and habits.

I love stories of triumph and overcoming incredible odds. These stories inspire me. They instill the belief that anything is possible when you have the will to change. The biographies of Steve Martin, Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, Martin Short, George Carlin and Martin Luther King Jr. are some of my most treasured. I gobble up anything Tim Ferriss or Ryan Holiday generously share with the world. I read Seth Godin's daily blog religiously. The rest of the week I pick apart the gems that Jocelyn K Glei, The Daily Stoic, Jimmy from Swipe File and Brain Pickings by Maria Popova graciously curate with their weekly newsletters. And I mustn't forget Mark Manson, who delivers much-needed wit and blunt honesty into a sometimes stale personal-development world.

I love bold ideas and challenging of the status quo. Podcasts encourage escaping into a world of brilliant storytelling and long-format interviews. They delight the mind and push the boundaries of creative thinking. Some of my favourites include: Hurry Slowly, The Tim Ferriss Show, Reply All, Heavyweights, The Learning Leader, Unmistakable Creative, The Kevin Rose Show, On Being with Krista Tippett, The Coaching Habit, Radiolab, Revisionist History, This American Life and Movement Makers with Nikki Groom.

Professional Stuff

I spent about seven years working in the social justice field. I was a facilitator with Canada's leading mental health program for youth with behavioural problems, facilitating Cognitive Based Therapy with youth and adults. I was a Life Coach with Pathways to Education, a Canada-wide initiative helping youth in low-income communities graduate from high school. That’s a program close to my heart, as I dropped out in Grade Eleven. I did get back to school and graduated with a B.A. in Criminology from Wilfrid Laurier University. The results of that unique Pathways program have been groundbreaking, increasing high school graduation rates by an average of 75%. My role was part counselor, advocate, confidante, social worker and mediator - motivating and guiding students and families, providing insight and accountability.

It led to me attending the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching where I graduated as a Certified Professional Coach and an Energy Leadership Master Practitioner. I'm an Associate Certified Coach under the International Coaching Federation. This is achieved through 60 + hours of training and 100 + hours of Coaching experience.

As well as running my personal Coaching business, I'm a facilitator with the Beanstalk Project, which provides certifications in Specialist High School Majors for youth in Schools across Ontario. I do workshops in leadership, project management, portfolio development, conflict resolution and other areas.

I’m a graduate of Seth Godin's The Marketing Seminar. Through more than 50 videos taught by Seth Godin released over 100 days, you learn the basic skills for successful modern marketing. But more important, the videos are paired with 200+ questions designed to guide you to new insights and strategies for your immediate work—no matter where you are in your career. I can not recommend this course enough.

Thanks!

Thank you for visiting my corner of the Internet! Feel free to poke around and check out my latest articles and my newsletter, if you’re into that sort of thing. I hope you discover something here that leaves you with a new belief, encouraged, and a little more optimistic than before.