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Have yourself a good old bitchfest

Rachel Estapa

Sometimes you need a great bitchfest. It feels glorious to take a deep breath, let all your social mores down and tell your enlightened self to take a back seat so you just complain about things. “..This is coming from a life coach?” you might be thinking. YES because you know what? While being a coach is totally awesome, inspiring and fulfilling, I’m still a human being in world that drives me bonkers.

Your classic fixer-upper

This August marked the 1 year anniversary of me being a certified coach and launching my own small business (yay!) During this year though, people from all walks of life (non-clients) talk to me differently when they learn I’m a coach. They unload their stories and their issues, and I usually listen and respond in ways that I know will be of help to them.

After a while, it gets a little draining and I’m guilty of positioning myself as the “fix it” person and forgetting a primary rule of being a coach: It’s not your responsibility to fix anyone or take on their concerns as your own.

So amidst taking on other's situations, I’ve been my own worst client. I’ve been pessimistic, making excuses, playing the victim, super critical, worrying about the future in excess & being pretty self-centered.

It’s uncharacteristically Rachel and I even tried to self-coach and nothing worked to shift my mentality.

I was in a funk, plain and simple - but wasn’t allowing myself to accept it.

When you become a coach, you know yourself so well, know your tricks & traps, that you forget to give yourself a break when you feel less that your optimal self. You forget that you’re a person who doesn't know all the things to say at the right moment.

I fought my “airing of grievances” for too long and the toll on my mental & emotional state was becoming too much. I thought that if I complained, then I must not be that great a coach to rework those feeling within myself first.

What’s funny is, I evoke “bitchfest” in my coaching calls often -- it’s the first 5-10 mins where the client can just vent and let all their frustrations out, then we can actually get to work. But I didn’t allow myself that same bitchfest moment. I judged the fact that I needed one in the first place.

Getting it all out

I spent the day with my one of my dearest girlfriends and we had ourselves a good old bitchfest. We talked about our personal lives, all the people who drive us mad, all the things at work that make no sense, all the social expectations that warp our minds, and how our upcoming ten-year high school reunion is making us realize how quickly time flies and that getting older is scary.

It was nice not to find a solution, realization or have a breakthrough -- I really just wanted to vent and let it out because inside my head was getting too cramped. No need to fix or resolve - just letting myself be human and complain. (It helps also to have such a wonderful friend who knows the “fixer feeling” too :) )

I needed to bitch because I wanted to flush out all the gunk within me that’s blocking my ability to see things clearly and remember all the great things I have going for me.

How do I know the bitchfest worked? When I got home, I did 3 things that I had been avoiding for weeks: check my bank accounts, send an email to another coach about working with them directly & write a new blog post :)

Bitchfest = success!