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#53 The Benefits of Long Term Coaching with Maggie Reyes

Have you ever wondered how a relationship can evolve beautifully through long-term coaching? I'm joined today once again by my amazing coach, Maggie Reyes, sharing our incredible journey of development and growth.

We explore the value of accepting that not everyone will want the same things as we do and allowing them to follow their paths without taking it personally.

We also discuss the beauty of having a touchstone, someone who sees the best version of us even when we don't.

Maggie Reyes is a Master Certified Life Coach and Modern Marriage Mentor who specializes in helping driven, ambitious women create their best marriages without waiting for their partners to change or adding more work to their lives.

She is the creator of The Marriage MBA Program, a 6-month mentorship in creating a successful marriage using principles from positive psychology, cognitive science and simple coaching tools that you can learn today and apply tomorrow.

Maggie is the author of the best-selling Questions for Couples Journal which has over 3,000 4-star ratings on Amazon.

She is also the host of the The Marriage Life Coach Podcast, which is consistently ranked among the top 2 percent podcasts out of over 2 million podcasts tracked by ListenNotes.

When she isn't teaching or coaching, she loves obsessing over Bridgerton, reading fan fiction, sexy romance novels and watching superhero movies and Mexican Rom Coms with her hubby.

Since you’re ready to become your favorite version of you, book a consult to learn more about working with me as your coach.

"Instead of thinking that my client should get exactly what they invested in the program, I always think I want to give them their investment in each call." - Melissa

What you'll learn in this episode:

  • The secret of transforming an empty nest into a harbor of emotional freedom

  • How a train seat booking mishap can teach you lessons on emotional maturity

  • How to recognize the power of your choices

  • The discussion on desire vs. dependence in relationships

"Your coach sees potential that sometimes you don't see in yourself and, if it's a skilled coach, they just hold the space for whatever that's going to look like in your life." -Maggie

Mentioned in This Episode:

Be sure to sign up for a consult to see if coaching with me is the right fit for you. Join me on a powerful journey to become your favorite you.

Listen to the full episode:

Read the full episode transcript

 Hey, this is Melissa Parsons, and you are listening to the Your Favorite You Podcast. I'm a certified life coach with an advanced certification in deep dive coaching. The purpose of this podcast is to help brilliant women, like you, with beautiful brains create the life you've been dreaming of with intention.

My goal is to help you find your favorite version of you by teaching you how to treat yourself as your own best friend. If this sounds incredible to you and you want practical tips on changing-up how you treat yourself, then you're in the right place. Just so you know, I'm a huge fan of using all of the words available to me in the English language, so please proceed with caution if young ears are around.

Hello everyone. And welcome back to Your Favorite You. I was trying to think about what I wanted to do as a special episode for this one-year anniversary episode. And I came up with a brilliant idea and I didn't even have to twist her arm. She was all into the idea from the get-go of having my coach, Maggie.

Interview me, so we're going to kind of turn the tables where normally I'm the person doing interviewing Maggie is going to interview me and of course. In typical Maggie fashion, she said, well, what are we going to talk about? And so, I thought that it would be beneficial to talk about the benefits of having a coach for the long term.

So, Maggie and I have worked together mostly on, but a little bit off since 2018. So, it is now 2023, if you're listening to this in present day, if you're listening. In the future, hello from the past we're here, but we have worked together meeting weekly. Initially, Maggie was my marriage coach for six months, which actually turned into eight months.

And then we took a little hiatus and pretty quickly after I decided that I was going to pursue coaching, being a coach myself, we got back to it and we have been meeting weekly and sometimes Even more than that, just as friends between those weekly sessions. So, when I say that Maggie knows my brain better than I know my brain, that's not a euphemism.

That is not a joke. That is the truth. If you know, Maggie, if you have the pleasure of knowing her in person, you know, that her memory is like a steel trap and there's no getting away with anything. With Maggie as my coach, that is the benefit, one of the benefits. Of having her as my coach for this long.

So welcome to the podcast, Maggie, welcome back

Maggie: for that beautiful introduction. It's my honor and my pleasure to be here. And I can't wait to talk about the long-term benefits. Of coaching, like the exponential returns that you get over time. And what's fascinating, I think, about us and our relationship is I've known you so long that I've seen you create Your Favorite You.

Like, I met you when you weren't Your Favorite You, and I've seen not just the trajectory of all the changes you've made, and all the work you've done to make those changes, but also How you've created a new normal, like you've increased your baseline to a place that it wasn't before and I think it's just a fascinating thing to think about and if you're listening to this podcast about Your Favorite You and secret surprise, this will also air on the Marriage Life Coach podcast.

So, hi to everyone from the Maritime Coach Podcast, we're going to do a double feature situation. So, if you're listening to this and you're just like, I want, can my life be different? Like, we, a lot of times make decisions in the moment, just thinking about the moment and the problem at hand. Right? And it's fascinating to think about.

Some ripple effects we didn't even imagine when we were solving that problem at hand. I'm going to start with this. We just start in the middle and then we're just going to see where we go from it.

Maggie: as we always do very recently, Melissa went on 1 of those epic lifetimes. Trips, went to Europe, posted beautiful, amazing pictures, shared amazing stories about her adventures and, and what was really amazing about watching that online, like unfold online, you know, I was home in Miami, I wasn't on the trip, watching that unfold was, I, as her coach, remember when in 2018, she said, I am going to have an empty nest in a few years, and I want that nest to feel good when it's just the two of us.

And that was her highest intention. If we could sum up why we started working together in the first place, that was ultimately the highest intention she had. And so, I'd see these pictures now that the nest actually is empty. And now you are going on trips and it's just the two of you. And I hope that we can get some of the pictures.

Maybe we can link to it in the show notes of that trip. That might be really cool. The radiance of the love and the joy and the selfies with her amazing husband that we, you know, love, but it's also human. Like we all are right. It has flaws and virtues. Like we all do to see that the long-term effective coaching is the nest is now empty.

And that trip was amazing. That's not just the trip, but the life that you've created with each other. So, would you care to speak about that at all? I thought that might be an interesting. Oh my

Melissa: goodness. Once I stopped crying. In a surprise twist, everyone saw coming, I am crying about three minutes into the podcast.

Maggie: Why are you crying?

Melissa: Oh, just because it's so true. Like that is just like, that was the highest intention for my relationship was that we would have fun together and we would want to spend time together and it wouldn't be this. Horrible thing that the boys were leaving. And then my other big intention, which I believe that we both Jon and I have made true come true is that when the boys were older and they didn't have to spend time with us, that they actually would want to be around us and spend time with us and that type of thing.

So, so yeah, I mean, I think, you know, Jon's and my relationship now is. The world’s different than it was 5 years ago, and we had a good relationship. We didn't have a terrible relationship. It wasn't that like, neither of us was considering. Not being in the relationship or either of us was considering leaving or anything like that, but we knew that what we had, we could make better.

And we knew that we had been kind of having the same arguments over and over, and we didn't know how to get out of the cycle. And so, to be able to go on this trip, and of course we didn't get along perfectly the whole time, like that is not. The goal,

Maggie: right? Can we pause there for a second? I think that's so important.

Yeah. So, whenever we think about anything we do in coaching, you could be thinking about your career, your business, your kids, your marriage, whatever is going on for you in your life right now. I always use the hotel analogy because I used to work in hospitality, and I like to think about a 5-star hotel, a Ritz Carlton, a St. Regis, a Four Seasons, and what if your life felt like that versus a motel, right?

Scratchy sheets, cold showers, right? Versus everything is soft to your skin and feels delicious and you have complimentary slippers and like all that. Like, you just feel held, right? In that experience and the analogy that I'm going to make for everyone is even in the most relaxed.

Yeah. Amazing hotel in the world things go wrong, but coffee will be cold. They'll deliver your breakfast and they forgot to bring the jam or the butter. Like, it doesn't mean things don't go wrong. It's just they have a process. They follow to fix things. And most of us and most of our lives and most of our relationships don't, and what you learn in coaching is how to have that.

Melissa: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And I mean, I think for me, the simplest thing that you taught me was the first thing that you taught me that I still rely on heavily to this day, which is just okay. I feel myself getting activated. Instead of doing what I would normally do, which we are going to, I'm sure discuss, but for me it is a fight.

I get the choice to take a pause, take a breath, and decide how does my favorite me handles this situation right now? Or we're in the middle of arguing about something like... The seats that I mistakenly booked on the train that had us facing another couple where the man was also six, two. So, Jon and this dude were like bumping knees the whole three-hour train ride.

Yeah. Yeah. Oops. I thought I looked at the seat map, but apparently not close enough, you know, and we're like. Upset with each other in that situation and it's like, oh, like, of course we're upset right now. We're tired. We're hot. We're hungry. Like all the reasons that, you know, your nervous system is ready to pounce.

If you're not taking care of yourself type of thing, and he's able to see it as, oh, she just made a mistake and didn't look as closely and I'm able to like, laugh and like, be like, oh yeah, you're going to be bouncing knees with this guy the whole time. Like, so sorry, so bad, so sad, like we'll be off the train shortly, but yeah, just that ability to like, before it.

Turns into an argument, or when we're in the middle of the argument, being able to pause and like, oh, gosh, okay. This is not how I expected this to go. This was not my intention. Like, I fucked it up, like, sorry, you know, I mean. I didn't look as closely as I maybe should have, or I maybe shouldn't have listened to the 20-year-old at the desk at the hotel who told me that the premium seats weren't that much nicer.

And to save my 50 euros, like I should have spent the 50 euros, like

Maggie: lesson learned.

Melissa: Lesson learned it. Always pay for the more room on the seats, not such a big deal when you're five, three, but probably a big deal when you're six to like,

Maggie: again, we just use that as such a great analogy for coaching too, because it's like, you can figure out anything that we teach you on your own.

And you'll just bump your knees for 3 months and figure it out or you have someone help you and then you travel into a premium cabin, and you get to enjoy the view and you get to have a snack and you get to have you still figure it out, but it's a very different experience. I feel like when you were telling that story, I was like, in so many ways.

That is what you get out of coaching. Like, no one needs coaching. You don't need to be in the premium cabin. It just gives you comfort on the journey and the journey is already bumping and it's already hard and its multiple hours and you'll be tired, and you'll probably be hungry and thirsty. And it's like, can we make that better?

Melissa: I think we can. Of course, absolutely. Or we wouldn't be here every week, like doing it over and over again.

Maggie: Yeah. And something that you mentioned is, and that pops out for me is 5 years ago or 6 years ago, that would have happened, and it would have ruined if not the whole day, the whole week. You'd still be talking about it at home.

It like, the, the wake the, I call it the emotional wake of what that would have created without that ability to pause, breathe. Reframe what happened be loving toward each other, even in the adversity, it would have created an emotional wake. That was just. Like so stressful and so filled with tension and so uncomfortable.

And instead, because that's your new baseline over the long term of doing it by now, years later, thousands of times, like pausing and breathing. Imagine if we do that once a day, 365 days, five years, whatever, like right. But

now it's just where you go automatically. Like we have, we have changed your baseline. We have changed your automatic response and it's simple. It's 1 pause and breath at a time repeated over and over again. And then when something actually stressful happens, it's just where your brain goes.

Melissa: Yeah. How could I make this better in the moment?

Like, how can I, we definitely know that neuro biologically, we co regulate with 1 another. So, if I'm heightened, it makes it so much easier for Jon to be heightened. And if he's heightened, it makes it so much easier for me to be heightened. And just. The fact, I think that I. Went 1st with coaching, and then he's also, you know, on his own coaching journey.

It's just like the high highs and the low lows aren't there that much and we still get into arguments, but we try to figure out, okay, how is this argument going to keep us. Get us closer together instead of. Taking us further apart from one another

Maggie: and what happens over time with the long term of having your mind managed, like, like questioning things and talking through things and thinking through things is when these stressors happen, even your problem solving is calmer and more clear and you're able to, to get more out of it because you, this is how you live all the

Melissa: time.

Yeah, the level of emotional maturity in the Parsons household. Has gone up, like, exponentially for the 50-year-olds in the house,

Maggie: how would you define emotional maturity? If like, someone is hearing us talk for the 1st time, how would you define that?

Melissa: I think it is the ability a, to know what emotion is.

What is it a

Maggie: feeling? Right?

Melissa: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. To know where my feelings come from. So sometimes it's my thoughts, sometimes it's my past, sometimes it's my body, you know, that type of thing to know that although other people don't cause my feelings and I don't cause their feelings, we do influence one another.

We co regulate, like I just said, whenever we're in a situation. Instead of thinking, like, why are you doing this to me? I'm thinking, what am I making this mean? The ability to, like, stop in the middle of an ego activation and say, like, oh, like, this is not where I wanted to go. Can I get a do over? Can I, you know, can I ask for forgiveness?

The ability to give forgiveness, I think, is a huge part of emotional maturity.

Maggie: I love that. I just think we can't talk about it enough and we can't use too many words and we all need to like, think about these things. So, when you said emotional maturity, another thought that I had is some of us may have a lot of emotional maturity.

If you're listening to Your Favorite You, it's likely you have some already, because that's how you found this podcast. You're working on it. You're thinking if you listen to all the episodes, you have some already, right? But we're in relationships with people. That doesn’t have even emotional literacy. And so, this is what I, I have now started calling emotional literacy.

I'm going to ask Melissa to think about this, but everybody, listening, think about this for a second. And it could be a man or a woman, but a lot of times it happens with men. It's not across gender lines whatsoever but think about someone that you love and care about deeply. It doesn't have to be your partner.

It could be anybody. And think about, can they name their feelings? If you ask them, like, do they have the basics of. Naming it versus even being able to have a conversation about it, which is being able to observe what yours are, how many of us are genuinely in relationships with people who have no emotional literacy.

And then what we expect of them is to have emotional maturity. Like, you have to start at the ABC. Yes,

Melissa: Yes, yes. Yeah. I can think of several people that I am in a relationship with that I know and love and have known and loved for a long time that. Are afraid of feeling anything.

Maggie: At all, and what happens over the course of a long term of coaching is it helps you manage that too.

Like, I think it would be interesting as a segue of how, when you get for lack of a better term, healthier or more clear, or become more of Your Favorite You, there are relationships that shift in your life. Can you speak to that a little bit?

Melissa: Yeah, for sure. I think, and I'm sure my clients would attest to this too, that, you know, when you first start receiving coaching, you see it as the like secret to the universe and you think that everyone needs to know about it.

Everyone needs to hear about it. Everyone needs to be coached. Everyone needs to get a coach. You start. Unintentionally coaching people without ever having the skill of coaching people. You don't ask for consent. Like you just, you know, you're just like, this is so amazing. Like everyone must know about this.

And I think that part of emotional maturity for me, for sure, is knowing that just because I think it's amazing, it doesn't mean that everyone that I love needs to think that it's amazing. Needs to want it as part of their life. It really lets you be on your own path toward healing without feeling like you need to drag everyone else along with you, and I think that's a hard lesson that I had to learn early on.

Like that some of the people in my life that I really love and like, no, would benefit from coaching are not interested.

Maggie: Yeah. And accepting that is also a skill.

Melissa: Yes. And not getting, I can definitely remember you coaching me about this at one point. Like I was getting so frustrated with myself. For not accepting that other people in my life didn't want coaching or weren't interested.

And you just pointed me back to my own humanity, like, oh, you're allowed to be frustrated about that without ever having to do anything about it. Like you said, you don't have to make yourself wrong for wanting stuff for other people that they don't want for themselves.

Maggie: Sounds like a good idea! Yes! We should do that!


Melissa: Yeah, and just like Being willing to let it go, you know, without making it mean that somehow, I'm failing the people that aren't interested.

Maggie: What if everybody gets to go their own path and have their own adventures?

Melissa: Yes. Yeah, that was totally part of my control, enthusiasm, healing work that I did. For sure and continue to do.

Maggie: and what do you think about having that touchstone every more or less every week, like, having a space to just let it all.

I don't know, hang out, you know, like, to just be with the messy parts of yourself. Like, what is your experience having that over time?

Melissa: Oh, my goodness. So hopefully my clients feel this. From me too, because you've led by such amazing example for me, but like, I'm going to cry.

Maggie: It's okay. All emotions are welcome here.

Melissa: I know just knowing that you see the highest version of me always. And you saw it before I did. And you were willing to hold space for me to see it eventually, or maybe not see it like in either way to be okay. So I think just like having that person that I know believes in me no matter what and is willing to help me see like when I really do feel like, oh, gosh, I have messed this up for like you to help me make sense of why I did what I did for you to keep always, always, always pointing me back to my brilliance.

I can't even put a price tag on it. Like, there's. No amount of money spent time spent, I just can't imagine what life would be like if I hadn't done this and I don't want to,

Maggie: let's not, let's not do that.

Melissa: Yeah, let's not.

Maggie: So, here's the part where we never talk about it like in a session, but we get to talk about it and share with all of you how amazing that is to experience on the receiving end.

And then I can share how amazing it is to be the person who gets to do that. Right? So, I get to be the person who witnesses the depth of the beauty of the humanity in you and in any everyone that I'm that I'm coaching. And it's such an amazing thing. It's almost like holding a treasure. So, if you can imagine, like, in so many ways, coaching is like treasure hunting, and we're just hunting for the treasure.

And then we get to hold the treasure, and we get to be with the treasure. It's like such a beautiful experience. Now, you may be listening to us and thinking, well, I'm not a treasure. I don't feel like a treasure today. But that's the thing but imagine that you enter this magical realm where for an hour every week, whether it's a group call, whether it's a one-on-one call, whatever it is, in this space, you are held as a treasure.

How amazing and healing that is.

Melissa: Yeah, and I think just to be able to show up, like with the messiness, like you said, not have to Be put together ever, you know, so many of our amazing calls have happened when I've come to the call thinking, I don't know what I need coaching on today and, or there's not much going on.

And then you ask 1 question and then an hour later, we're like, Oh, holy hell.

Maggie: That was like last week, everybody. This was, I mean, it does happen more than once, but yeah, we had a vivid in our mind. Yeah.

Melissa: It's like, oh, thank goodness we had this session planned because like, like you said, like, had I not had anyone else to like, look at my thoughts and look at my brain with me, I might not have seen.

You know what we were able to uncover, like you said, and some of it is beautiful treasure and some of it is pretty shitty treasure. And we just get to decide like how we're going to look at it and how we're going to hold it and what of it we're going to keep and what of it we're going to discard and what we're going to tweak.

And if we're still working on this, I'll share with all of you guys too. But like, I have this. Bullshit story that I'm not creative.

Maggie: Oh my gosh. We're going there. Everyone prepares. Okay. Huh.

Melissa: So, the first time I said this, I think you very gently and lovingly said something like, that cannot be true. Like when you were a pediatrician, if someone came in with an infection and the first antibiotic didn't work, did you just say, ah, I don't know what to do.

That is not what happened. And then immediately I was like, oh my God, I was so creative. With potty training, I was so creative with sleep solutions for families and that type of thing. And it's just like this BS story that my brain was giving me because I was having trouble coming up probably with a post to write or a podcast episode or something, you know, thinking that I needed to be perfect instead of.

Just knowing that I only need to be a couple steps ahead of whoever I'm trying to help. Right. So anytime I'm like down that rabbit hole of, I don't know what to say. I don't know what to do. Like immediately, like, I'm just like, Oh Lord. Okay. Like, I just have you in my brain. Like,

Maggie: really?

It's the first time I was gentle. The most recent time it was less gentle, but very. Playfully. Right. Playfully aggressive.

Melissa: The loving Maggie Smackdown, we call it in our inner circles.

Maggie: I know all of you. Welcome to the inner circle, everyone.

Melissa: Yes. Could you please, for the YouTube video, bring out your magic wand and hit it against the screen like you normally do?

Maggie: So, this is what we did last time. I went like this. Yeah, she's

Melissa: taking her magic wand and pretending to hit me from Miami to Columbus

Maggie: lovingly. But the, here's the thing is when you work with someone over time, we don't have to rehash the story. We don't have to go back and figure it out. We like, I always think about it, even though I could never play poker and know no rules of a poker.

All I know is like what I've seen on ocean's 11. Okay, but I know I can never, I can never play poker, but a coach knows you tells. So, it's kind of like, you know, if you grab your ear, you twitch your nose or whatever. When Melissa comes to me with certain like greatest hits of the stories, I'm like, I'm ready for you.

Let's do this. Right. But with a shorthand that I think is one of the things that is kind of like the value of like coaching over a longer term. And I want to just say that to everybody for everybody to know. And I want to say a couple things and I want to get your take on it. Some people. They come in, they'll do Your Favorite You with you for 6 months, or they'll do the marriage MBA with me for 6 months, or 1 on 1, whatever we're doing.

And that's fine. They get what they needed, they're in, they're out, they're done. And there's nothing wrong with that. And we've even done that in programs and situations we've been in, in different coaching situations. It's kind of like, it depends on what you need and when and how. And for some other things, we just need longer term support, depending on what's going on in our lives, depending on what's happening in this chapter of our, of our life.

And I'd love to hear your take on. We're talking about the value of long-term coaching, but also the value of like short term coaching, like, how do we hold both of those together? And what are your thoughts on that?

Melissa: Yeah, I would say most people who come to me, and I would venture to say that most people that come to you really do.

I'm not going to say need, but almost like need coaching. Like they need something different than what they've always done. To get over the hump of from where they are right now to where they think that they want to be. And you're absolutely right. Some people come in; they get exactly what they need. One of my values that has been brought to me through you is that instead of thinking that my client should get exactly what they invested in the program, I always think I want to give them their investment.

In each call, because that's something that you have said, and, you know, we've said multiple times, like, that was a 15, 000-dollar call. That was a 45, 000-dollar call. Like, these words have been said at the end of our calls. So, my thought is I want everyone to. Get exactly what they came for. And if that happens in six months working with me, amazing.

Like, I am so happy also because of you. I think there is beauty in it. Completions and there is beauty in renewal. So, most people come because they need it. They recognize that they need something different. They've tried things and haven't had success. And then the people that keep signing up over and over again are like, oh, I want this.

Like this is something that I no longer necessarily need, but it is something that I want to help me keep going on this path with me and you. It's just like, I can't imagine not having you looking at my brain and, you know, Jon and I joke every time. You know, it comes up for renewal. We just started another session.

Like last week was our first call of I've lost count, but I was teasing with Jon, and I was like, I don't think I'm going to renew with Maggie. And he was like, what? And, you know, and he's like all for it, obviously, because he's like, let's have somebody have a look at your brain, you know, other than him.

Right. So, I think. I think it does come down to like, oh, I see the benefit of this for me. I always want people signing up just for themselves in my program, but it's undeniable. The reverberating effects that this has on your family, on your friendships, on the way that you spend your time. And I think for me, like, my relationship with you, you know, my values for sure.

And so, anything, anytime I'm. Acting outside of my values, like, I just want someone other than me to see it and be like. Smack, smack, like,

Maggie: yeah, we checked in on that. Yeah.

Melissa: You said you wanted this, but now you're doing this. Like, what's that about? Yeah. You know, did you change your mind or is this really something that you're just confused about?

Maggie: Yes. That's such a good question for everybody. Did you change your mind? Maybe you did, or did you forget that this other thing is also a priority? Should we bring it back, should we leave it aside and something that you and I have worked together with now for many years, we have a shorthand, I think, with each other.

And so, I want to bring everybody into a conversation that we've had a lot, just sort of piggybacks on what you just said, which is like, oh, my gosh, I can't imagine not having this time. And I want everybody to hear me really loud and clearly. One of the concepts that I teach in my relationship work is desire versus dependency.

So being with your partner out of desire, because you want to be with them, because it's amazing, because it's fun. Not because you have to be with them for some, like, reason that feels urgent and feels angst and stuff like that. And so, Melissa can very freely say, oh, I want to work with you forever.

From a place of desire, knowing. And I don't want to put words in your mouth, but I will, and then I'll ask you for more words, like, knowing she's completely capable, a 100 percent to do anything she wants to do in this world. It's from a place of desire, not a dependency. And I think that's what also helps our relationship be so clean and so clear over so many years when we're coaching.

What are your thoughts?

Melissa: Yes, absolutely. And I. I know that I have said to you before, if there ever comes a time where it doesn't make sense for you to be my coach anymore, no worries. I can do this on my own for sure. And, or I can find someone else that will hold the space for me beautifully too.


Maggie: So, and same from my side, you, right. I'm not like, oh, this must be here. Right. It's like, if there ever comes a time when what you need is a different flavor, a different adventure, a different, whatever. And I think that we are talking about this. As in the profession of coaches, but also as coach and client for anyone who's listening to us, like, what is a healthy relationship that over time?

Oh, how would it feel if you hear us talking to each other? We're very transparent. We're very clear. We're both in our own power. We're not above or below each other when we're talking, like we're both magnificent humans with amazing priceless value. Right. And I just want everyone to hear what that sounds like, because sometimes we have no point of reference of what that sounds like.

And we get into situations that are over time, but don't feel that way.

Melissa: Right, right, right. Yeah. If there was ever a time where you and I were not holding one another in the highest regard. I mean, I can't imagine it, but, you know, there would, that would be the end. Right. I mean, that would be it. It would be like, oh, this is over though.

Maggie: Everyone listed. We just gave you the example of the 5-star hotel that sometimes things go wrong. That doesn't mean that we don't have human moments with each other. And that doesn't mean that we don't have, like. Moments where we have to clarify things, or we have to ask each other something and I do want to also say, because it's so happens, we've worked together for a very long time, and we have very similar values and just many parts of our life are very real line very well that we have become friends outside of coaching.

But I want everyone listening to know you do not have to. Become friends, nor should that be the expectation, right? When you've worked with a coach, whether it's us or anyone else, like, we're, in some ways, we're an exception. Because most of the time, imagine you'd have, like, a 1000. You can't be intimate with 1000 people.

Like, that's not possible. Right? And so, I just wanted to also normalize and talk about that. That that is kind of a unique thing that happened years into our, our relationship where it was just, we would just meet once a week. We would just talk about the thing. That was it. And years later, that evolved.

And I think it's important to say, because you're hearing us talk to each other with all the love that we have for each other. But we have very, very clean lines on both sides because. Melissa is an expert, amazing, legendary, epic coach, right, who, who has coached me on, you know, on things that I've been working through from time to time.

We are very clean. When we're friending, we're friending when we're coaching, we're coaching and that just helps us maintain the rapport that that we have. What are your thoughts or anything you want to share about that part?

Melissa: Yeah. No, I think you summed it up. Beautifully, like, we do have very clear boundaries.

We each, the only thing we have to do is sometimes remind each other that we will take care of our own boundaries. But we do that with love too. Right. So, yeah, I mean, I think it's a very emotionally mature friendship. It's a very clean coaching relationship. And. It is definitely unique in the industry. I don't know that there are probably many other coach client relationships that are as close friends as we are.

And I think the reason that it's been possible is because from the beginning, we set it out to be that way.

Maggie: Yeah, so I want everybody to just have a feel for like, this is kind of a unique thing and I, I did prepare some questions ahead of time and I would like to ask you maybe some like rapid fire.

Let's do it. What are your thoughts?

What has surprised you the most? About when you originally signed up for coaching to now, like where your life is, what has just surprised you the most as maybe one of the ripple effects, like you wanted a better marriage and then you got this and this and this and this, what are some of those things?

Melissa: Oh, my goodness. Okay. Like a life where I have so much freedom where I can work from anywhere. Where I can set my own schedule. It's very rare that I set an alarm in the morning, which in my prior life. It was not possible to live without an alarm, so like, that is just 1 of the, like, little benefits. That is huge for me.

Maggie: Okay. So, I said, it was going to be rapid fire, but I already changed my mind. I think we have to talk about this for a minute. I think it'll be so interesting for everyone listening. So, we've talked about how your coach sees potential in you that sometimes you don't see in yourself and, and if it's a skilled coach, they just hold the space for whatever that's going to look like in your life.

Like, it doesn't mean you're going to do whatever the coach says or anything like that. But at the end of our initial coaching cycle, I just told Melissa, hey, you know, you're really, really thoughtful in the way that we do our coaching together. And you ask yourself really brilliant questions and then you answer them.

With so much intention and so much thoughtfulness. I don't know if you've ever considered this. She was a very successful pediatrician with a thriving practice when I coached her. And I said, I don't know if you ever considered this, but maybe if it called you, you could consider coaching. And so, for her, it was coaching for somebody, you know, listening to us now, maybe you join Your Favorite You and you tell Melissa, I sing karaoke every weekend.

And she's like, well, have you ever considered going to a voice class and just, you know, joining your local choir? Like, it's not necessarily going to be the same. But there's stuff, there's themes in your life that your coach is just listening to with like sort of a clean slate. She's like, oh, you told me you love this.

How much time are you spending with this? What are you doing with this? You want more of this? Where does that lead you? So that happened also very organically as the ripple effect of being more herself and just. Wanting to have a better relationship and do all the work that is involved in that. Okay. So that was the surprise when I needed to add there.

I don't think so. No. Okay. Good. Okay. What has been 1 of the hardest parts of doing this internal work? Like, what has felt either challenging or confronting about sometimes seeing those parts of you that aren't the most delightful once.

Melissa: Gosh, probably admitting that I'm not always right, admitting that other people know more than me about certain things, being willing to just kind of question everything.

Maggie: Why does that feel hard sometimes?

Melissa: I mean, because the way that I was. Brought up in school for sure was that there is a right answer and there is a wrong answer, and you want it to be on the side of the right answer. Right? And I think. Being willing to see, and always being willing to look for the nuance and the, like, middle way.

It's not it's not always easy for me to do that. Like, I want to either be on the right side or I want to get off the wrong side as soon as possible. Right?

Maggie: And if you're listening to us, and you're in a profession where there is a right and a wrong where there is, we do it this way or someone like, when she was a pediatrician, someone could get hurt.

Something could happen. Like, if you're in a profession where there's a very right and wrong, and then you come to your personal life. And it's like, anything goes, there could be 54 different ways to do this thing, right? That can feel very jarring.

Melissa: Right. Yeah. That brings up when I was doing coach training in my job as a pediatrician, people were always looking to me, coming to me because they thought I had the answer.

Right. And it was very important that I have the answer, or I help them find the answer and that type of thing. So going through coach training where you couldn't possibly know the right answer for someone else, like only they know, I think that was kind of some of the hardest work that I did initially and, you know, me trying to with my early clients, like me recognizing, oh wait, like all the answers are within you.

And I get to keep pointing it back to you, even though I had. Been through coaching already and knew that all the answers were inside me still. I had that pull to try to come up with the right answer and help this person come to what I thought was the right conclusion and like needing to drop all of that and that type of thing, it was, it was very confronting.

Maggie: for me.

And let's notice that when we talk about like long term coaching, whether long term means six months for their long term means multiple years is. I think about it as we're building an emotional muscle and, you know, I love to use the rock as my poster boy for many examples, because why not? He's the rock, but the rock goes to the gym.

Melissa: Every day,

Maggie: yeah, he has the muscles already built. He has them. They're delightful. Yes, they are. But he still has to work them out. So it's like, if you come to coaching a coaching call, like every week and you have your, the way that you practice your mindfulness or whatever self-reflection you want to do, or however you want to practice self-compassion that week, or if you're doing journaling or whatever different tools you're using, we use them all the time, you don't just like arrive at a place and then like, he, he already did the work to get the muscle, but then you have to keep the muscle.

And that's where I think more sort of long term, different long-term experiences with different types of coaching support really come into play because, like, you already have all those muscles they're built. It's like, we're just have helping you keep them.

Melissa: Yeah. And I think anytime that I find myself.

Where like, think life isn't going the way that I want it to go. I'm like, oh, I just need to get back to basics. Yeah. Yeah. Get good sleep. I need to feed my body healthy food. I need to be outside in nature at least once a day. I need to get my thoughts. Out of my brain and onto paper so I can see, you know, what they are, that type of thing.

So yeah, those are the, like. Back to basics, like, have to do it want to do it so that I can see myself. As deeply as possible, so ready for the next 1 I'm ready.

Maggie: Okay, so I think a lot of people listening to us are like, okay, long term coaching sounds cool, but I'm afraid and they're afraid of different things.

So, hello person, we are you, you are us, we are as 1. We also get afraid of different things. So, if you think back to when we first met, when you booked the call, and you didn't know me, what were the hesitations that you had? How did you overcome them? When you thought about it, I'm going to actually get help to have this thing that I want, which by the way, at that time was years in the future.

It's like, I want to have a happy, empty nest years in the future. And if I don't start now, it's not going to happen. But tell me anything that was going through your mind around the hesitations and how you overcame them.

Melissa: Yeah. I mean, I think that most of us who have never had coaching before sometimes think if we do this work, we might end up somewhere where we don't want to be.

Or that we're like, I don't know where I'm going to end up. And what I always try to reassure people is like, I'm not like taking over your brain or anything like brainwashing you, right? Thank you. I couldn't think of the word. Yeah, this is not brainwashing every step of the way you're going to have choices.

So, I think sometimes people are afraid because they haven't even considered what their choices might be. They haven't taken the time to even ask themselves what they really want. I think that's a scary question for a lot of people,

Maggie: especially if you've been prioritizing everybody else for decades.

Right? Right. Both of us coach on that a lot. It's like, well, what do you want? I don't even know what I want. I haven't wanted something in such a long time. Like, what is that? Is that a real thing that I could do?

Melissa: Right? Yeah, I get to want things. What? Yeah. Yeah. So, I think when I first started coaching, I was like, what if I go through all of this and I still don't get the result that I was seeking.

Right. And it's just like, the other thing, I think that I don't know that I had this thought, but I hear this hesitation from other people. A bunch is like, I don't really want to know what's in my brain. And I'm like, oh, wait, but you already do know you just like, let it come to the surface and then you like file it back in the Rolodex, you know, it's like, you already know, like, we're not going to uncover anything that you don't already know necessarily.

Maggie: Okay, everyone. Spoiler alert. The results of your life tell you what's in your brain. Yes. We don't even need sentences to find out. Are your relationships thriving? Do you feel amazing? Are you stressed out all the time? Like, whatever is the result of your life, right? That tells us What's in your brain.

Melissa: Yeah, so good. And the other thing is like anything that is in your brain that you do want, you know, barring like I'm five, three, I'm probably never going to play basketball successfully. Like, you know, the things that you do want, like if you really do want them and you're willing to put in the time and the effort and the.

You know, put bandwidth to it, like, there's no reason that you can't have the things that you think that you want things, right?

Maggie: Yeah. Like, I'm never going to be an astronaut. Yeah. Right. Complex mathematics is just not going to happen for me in this lifetime.

Melissa: Thank goodness you have a husband who's good at math.

Maggie: Thank goodness. Right. So, there's, so there's some things I think what we do. Is most of us, and I'll include myself in this, we think about those outliers, the astronaut, the basketball, whatever. And then we underestimate. What is possible for us, we, we underestimate, like, like, for years, you know, when I was growing up, Oprah was my TV mom and I wanted to meet Oprah, like, the dream of my life.

If you ask me, I want to meet Oprah. And for years, I was like, well, I don't really know. Could that happen? I mean. What would have to happen for that to happen, right? Well, it turned out to be really simple. She just had to go on a speaking tour and have a VIP option that you could just pay for. And now I have met Oprah, right?

But, but like, I always tell people, so I'm from Miami, and I love Gloria Estefan, I grew up listening to her music, and I'm like, ooh, what do I want? I want to have, like, lemonade with Gloria Estefan, like, at her house. And that's unlikely to happen, but I can just allow myself to want that. Permission to just want it.

And I just let myself like, really just want it. And, oh, I have the coolest thing to tell you about that. Oh, what? Which is... There's a special movie series at our local university, the University of Miami, and literally they're doing a special evening called Going to the Movies with Gloria Estefan, and it'll be me and 200 of my best friends, right?

But I'm going to the movies with Gloria Estefan! That's

Melissa: so

Maggie: amazing. And it's one of those things that came into my awareness, and I happened to see it the day it was announced. But why did I see it the day it was announced? Because I allowed myself to just want that, and then I let my life flow and speak to me.

And I'm sure that if I denied that desire, I would have seen it when it was sold out already. Yeah.

Melissa: Yeah, so beautiful. So fun. Can't wait to hear all about it.

Maggie: It's going to be so fun. Okay. So Melissa, we talked at the beginning about the benefits of long term coaching and the benefits of, of just doing this work over time, what are 2 or 3 things that you wish everybody knew, whether it's about coaching, whether it's about creating Your Favorite You specifically, Whether it's like, it's kind of not like the surprises, but just things you wish people knew about what's possible for them as a result of being coached.

Melissa: I think 1 of the big benefits of coaching is. That you do get clear on what you do want. You do get clear on your values. And then as opportunities come up in your life. You get to decide. Is this something that I want or not? If it is not no, as a complete sentence, like full permission to say, no, is this in line with my values?

Is this. Is doing whatever this is, whether it's you have the opportunity to make brownies for your 3rd graders class, or you have the opportunity to go to Sedona with your girlfriends for a long weekend. Like, is this going to get me closer to my favorite version of me? Or is this going to take me further away?

Maggie: Yeah.

Melissa: And just like having the ability to have that kind of decision filter, whenever anything comes up, it just makes things so clear. And I think really, you know, what is the meaning of life? If you ask me that question,

Maggie: Melissa Parsons, what is the meaning of life?

Melissa: I think the meaning of life is. Getting to know yourself on the deepest level possible so that you can share who you are with the world and whether that's your spouse, whether that's your parents, whether that's your kids, your friends, it doesn't matter whether it's just for you.

If you only ever do this work just to get to know yourself, what is the point of life if you go through it without knowing yourself? Like I just. I can't imagine any other way at this.

Maggie: point. And I just want to talk to the person who's listening. Who's like, a little bit annoyed with themselves or disappointed with themselves or is like, I don't know if spending time with me would be that great.

I like spending time with you. I don't know if I want to spend that time with me. I just want to say that is part of what's possible with coaching is like Melissa talks about Your Favorite You all the time is that you get to. Really become the version of you that you would want to spend time with.

Melissa: Yeah, and my favorite version of me gets annoyed at shit.

Like I want to, I want, there are things I want to be angry about. Yeah. Same. Right. So, my favorite me is not like some Pollyanna always trying to thought swap so that I have amazing thoughts about myself and everyone else in the world. It's like. Oh, no, like she's allowed to be frustrated.

Maggie: Is there anything else that you want everyone to know before we wrap up on this very special episode?

So, for everyone listening, this episode begins the second year of Melissa's podcast. And she gave a beautiful example of how she started the podcast thinking that she wasn't creative. And now we have. Factual evidence recorded for posterity. Whenever that thought crosses her mind, she has 52 episodes of proof to the contrary, and this is the 53rd, I think.

Right. So yeah, creativity.

Melissa: Yeah. Yay. And if you're out there listening and there's something that I haven't spoken to, and you want to hear about it, like, please like, don't hesitate to reach out. To me, and I'm sure Maggie feels the same way. Like if there's anything that you all want to hear about, like ask, and, you know, Maggie, one of the things that she has taught me is something that her TV mom taught her, and that is Oprah's quote that you get in life, what you have the courage to ask for.

So, you know, don't be afraid to ask me to, to speak to anything that you guys want to hear about. I'm open to hearing ideas.

Maggie: I love that so much. And I love getting questions from people. So, if you were inspired by this episode and you're like, I wish you would have talked about X, whatever that is. I think you can come to us on Instagram.

I'm at the Maggie Reyes on Instagram. What are you?

Melissa: Coach Melissa Parsons, MD,

Maggie: Coach Melissa Parsons, MD, the Maggie Reyes, come and find us and ask us, tell us, I listened to that episode, even if you're listening to this, who knows when in the world, the time of the world, come and DM us over there and say, hey, I listened to that episode.

And this is my question.

Melissa: You'd love to receive it. Yeah. And we will, we will come back, and we will answer any and all questions that y'all have for sure. Thank you, Maggie. Thank

Maggie: you everyone for listening. Thank you for having me. Year two.

Melissa: Year two. Here we come. Bye guys. See you next week.

Thank you for listening to the podcast and loving on me all the time. Now that my group launch is closed, I am opening up two spots to work with me one-on-one. If one-on-one coaching is more your jam, please reach out to me to book a consult by going to my website,, and clicking on the Work with Me tab.

I would love to discuss with you how I can help you on a one-on-one basis. Talk to you soon.

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