Kim Argetsinger, Surrender to the Grey - Entrepreneur/Life Coach
Kim and I had first met as the year came to an end, and during the last weeks of December in 2015, as I closed out my Folioh Port pop-up space, she hosted a life-coaching session for a group of her close friends and friends of.
Here I had experienced life coaching for the first time at some level. Before this I was skeptical, having already read too many 'self-help' books to count, I was over others telling me what to do, but this was different. This was a peer-to-peer community, we shared our accomplishments from the year passing and aspirations for the next, we connected and empathized, and then we went our own ways.
Life coaching suddenly became something less threatening, and Kim, of course was the kind hearted soul behind these experiences. Later as the year opened, we came to work together, her as my coach and I as someone trying to figure out my life (of course a continuing struggle). And you'll hear through this conversation over coffee, once again, after our sessions came to a close and a catch up was in need, how her own life and her own continuous practices of self re-discovery have shaped who she is, and the value behind her work.
I came about coaching in a backwards way, and in some ways when I look back at my life I was always coaching (unofficially). You know growing up I was the girl with the separate phone lines and the machine with thirteen messages from people.
I used to have a regular at the bar job I had in LA, and he used to say, "KIM, what you should really do is open up shop next to this, and just have clients come in and just talk to you!" Because customers would just come in and sit and talk to me for hours, but it was never trained coaching.
I studied psychology in college (and then I went on to acting), and I was super fascinated by it. I suffered from depression big time when I was younger, and from a personal standpoint I was just thinking, how does this all work?
So, eventually, I moved out here [to NYC].
At a New Year's Eve party, I met a life coach and she asked me what I liked about acting? And that got me thinking, why am I doing this [acting], and it made me realize that I was at a standstill and that I was no longer in love with the world of acting. And it was like, what is this person doing(?), and it made me think about what she did, and so I started researching coaching and I ended up taking a program.
At the time I thought I was just going to take the program and still act. And it was just this roundabout way, and after I finished the program I ended up working in advertisement and six months in I realized that I wanted to just help people and that's what I love to do, and things started to click. It all just made sense, going into acting, to picking up and moving my life, to getting into advertisement, I feel like it was very non-linear and I think it helps me relate to people, because of it.
I remember distinctly, I was probably in high school, my family would spend time in Upstate New York. My cousin and I were on a family sail-boat, and there's this huge schooner that goes by, and he's like "I want to do that. That's what I want to do." And he was primed to go to law school the next year, so I 'coached' him, had a conversation with him, to go down the next day to this boat and basically get a job, which he did and he spent the next three years sailing the world (he didn't go to law school, well he eventually did), winning competitions, becoming a top sailor, and that was one of those moments when I felt, "... wow there is a power to conversations." He was going to go to law school, and instead he got to sail the world.
I guess [in taking the program] I realized that I wished I had known this while I was acting. I didn't realize how much I was getting in my own way, and self-sabotaging. I also realized how important action and accountability is. Just how consistent small actions and steps, and being accountable to yourself and others really add up to actual things.
I'm happier. I remember when I was first going through this coaching project, a friend came to visit, and she said, "You know, I didn't really know about this coaching shit, and was supportive because I love you, but I thought it was weird, but you're happier than I ever seen you." I feel more in control and more aware of the control I have on my own life. I am aware of the power I have over how I feel, or the decisions I make.
Don't get me wrong, I still get upset, I still cry a lot, I'm an actor (haha), but there's this element of knowing that I'm doing something I care about, and it makes me happy to see other people happy, and I just have more in my toolbox.
Things never happen the way we expect them too. But on the flip side, as much as we can't control things or feel like things don't happen how we want them to, we do have the power to make change. I was able to just pick up and leave LA and move here, and get a job and ... .
The power of perception, and how we choose to look at things.
You know life takes detours, and that's not to say that you shouldn't have a vision, or something you're going after. You figure it out by doing. I'm all about goals and vision plans and all of that, but not holding things too precious and just being able to go with the flow.
Surrendering to the gray. Wanting things now, wanting them a certain way, I think it came from my conversation with my coach. You can't connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards. Black and white is your comfort zone, it's a way we pretend to not have fears, but we still have them. We grow more clever in tricking ourselves, and surrendering to the grey is just us stepping outside of that, to look at the beauty that's going into the grey.
If we accept certain things they become our new normal and that can be good things as well.
I feel like I'm always revisiting myself. I have a tendency to live in the future and be results driven, and that can be frustrating, and I think, "Oh wait, I don't have to wait to be happy, I can be happy now."
Eyes on my own paper. Finding the value in my own work.