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10 Aug, 2010

Coaching’s Golden Girl

Posted by: The Coaching Academy In: Coach Spotlight|Coaching Articles|Personal Success|Success Stories

Life Coach Jenifer Harper shares her thoughts on why, NOW, at the age of 70, she decided to take up the idea of becoming a Professional Coach…

Dear Kris 

Just some thoughts, some more connected than others, on why, NOW, I decided to take up the idea of being a Professional Coach. 

First thought:  the Free Two Day course attracted me because I was, just past 70, at yet another point of change and thought I could use what was on offer to realign and focus some of my urgent options that were still a bit hazy and indeed felt overwhelming.   There isn’t a point at which life stops offering choices, or barriers, and it’s daft to get old without getting crafty.  It takes better technique to cope with obstacles and after a rather long life planning mostly for others it seemed a good point to spend some of that thinking-time on me. 

So I came along just for the stimulation, to pick up some tips, but the revelation over the two days was that here was something I recognised as already potentially in place.  In the exercises we did together, in twos, or threes,  I got such positive feedback from my fellow potential coaches that I thought, “Yes, this is using stuff I’ve done, or experienced, in a new, fresh way, that lets me support and stimulate others without having to go over, or even refer to, my personal life experience.”  I have absolutely no experience at all of business but one of the exercises, working on someone’s business plan, showed me how powerful the GROW method is, and how even in unpractised hands it can clearly work, and help.   

Not all of us more senior students have boundless energy and fitness and one of the most powerful side-effects of working through the study materials, the DVDs and the Accelerator Days, has been a huge boost of positivity.  This comes from recognising how much of the thinking chimes in with parts of one’s life that one has, frankly, forgotten, or never properly evaluated.  We just don’t give ourselves enough credit; achievements can slide out of mind, and one of the most attractive elements of coaching for me is the joy of reflecting back to someone else just how much he or she has already done, and can do.  It’s good to be listened to attentively by someone without any agenda save that of coaching you to use your own capacities to the full and achieve that dream.  

Have I mentioned that it is also fun?  And that I can do it sitting down?  And that the Coaching Academy, like my fellow aspiring coaches, seems totally age-blind?  

True, there is a great deal to study and absorb, and put into practice, as there should be when preparing to lend a hand with someone else’s life and dreams.  It’s a serious job with so much potential, and other coaches are generous with their time both as Coach and Coachee.  I think what I enjoy most is the feeling of doing something useful that looks forward to success, for my client, of course, and deep satisfaction for me. 

I hadn’t expected to find a niche that feels such a good fit and also offers a realistic opportunity for varied work on a professional basis. 

Jenifer Harper

7 Responses to "Coaching’s Golden Girl"

1 | Cherry Denison

August 11th, 2010 at 3:31 am


It sounds as if Jenifer has a lot to offer as a coach – and why would she not? An intelligent and self-reflective person becomes even more useful with age and experience. If we regard a fellow human-being however old or young as a stereotype without giving them a chance to show us who they are, more fool us.

2 | Tweets that mention Coaching’s Golden Girl - Coaching Blog --

August 11th, 2010 at 11:07 am


[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by John@TCM, Sue Courtney. Sue Courtney said: Coaching’s Golden Girl: Life Coach Jenifer Harper shares her thoughts on why, NOW, at the age of 70, she decided t… [...]

3 | Elizabeth Low

August 11th, 2010 at 11:48 am



What an inspiration you will be to the people you coach and come into contact with through out your life. I wish you all the best in all that you do.


4 | Sharon Waring

August 11th, 2010 at 8:21 pm


Hi Jenifer

It was indeed a pleasure and a positive experience to work with you and learn with you last weekend.

Good luck with your continuing journey!

5 | Ged Wilmot

August 11th, 2010 at 8:34 pm


A great success story Jennifer – very inspiring!

I am an Approved Driving Instructor using coaching in my work, and run my own coaching workshops with other instructors so that their pupils can reap the benefits of more effective learning.

But I would like to make a move into life coaching, too – your story has inspired me to look at booking my place on the next free course in Leeds (sadly, can’t make the one at the end of August).


6 | Esther Abwa

August 12th, 2010 at 12:28 am


Dear Jennifer,
I am very impressed by your achievement. You really sound like the Golden girl in value, since you have a lot to contribute to turning dreams into reality.

7 | Jan Brigden

January 10th, 2011 at 8:28 pm


Such an inspiration, Jennifer. And such an achievement. Can’t imagine how rewarding it must be to help lift peoples’ spirits and help them to recognise their true worth. Thank you for sharing your story and congratulations on your success. Best Wishes, Jan

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