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Ask Coach Tony: Demystifying Coaching

In Ask Coach Tony, you ask the questions, and I answer them.

I am a coach, author and project manager. I have built a successful, twenty-plus-year career in corporate America. I have created a small business, Operation Melt, focused on helping others make their dreams come true. Oh yeah, I also lost over 100 pounds in under a year and have kept it off without any fad diet. This means that people ask me many questions, and I love to answer them.

A question asked by one is a question had by many. So, Ask Coach Tony will share the answers to these questions via the Operation Melt blog so everybody can see them.

Go ahead, ask me anything!

Amuse Bouche

Before we get to today’s post, I offer you this light “amuse-bouche” to entertain your mind before we get down to business. Like any other amuse-bouche, you may hate my “dad joke,” but it is worth every penny that you paid for it, right?

I love the soundtrack to the Lion King and often catch myself mindlessly singing it. I guess you could say that the urge to sing “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” is always just a whim away… a whim away, a whim away.

Ask Coach Tony: Demystifying Coaching

What is a coach?

A coach is someone trained and skilled in tools to help you define and achieve your goals. A coach is a partner, a guide, a cheerleader and a sounding board for you as you chase your biggest goals and the life of your dreams.

Importantly, a coach is not somebody who tells you what to do, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to coaching. A good coach helps you figure out what you want and how to get it, but you still have to do the work.

What kinds of coaching do you do?

There are many different kinds of coaches in the world, all with varying areas of expertise. In general, if there is an activity that you can name, there is a coach who can help you.

My coaching specialties include:

  • General life coaching – what do you want from life, how do you get there, and what’s holding you back
  • Health, fitness and weight management
  • Goal success coaching 
  • Career and leadership development coaching
  • Project management skills development

That said, there are many areas where I would not be your best coach; here are a few of the common ones:

  • Assessment-specific (e.g., Enneagram, StrengthsFinder, Myers-Briggs, etc.) coaching, though they are tools that I commonly use in other areas of my coaching.
  • Parenting and adoption
  • Relationships
  • Running and personal training
  • Disease management

How does it work?

Each coaching engagement is unique, so there isn’t a specific structure that I apply to all coaching relationships. We would begin our relationship with a call, video chat or even a series of emails talking about what you hope to achieve and how coaching could help. Based on this, I create a proposal describing the process and expectations specific to your needs.

Here is an example of how our coaching relationship could work if you worked with me to help you lose weight.

  • I would work with you to create an actionable goal, including your why and your compelling vision for the future. How much weight do you want to lose, by when and why? I wouldn’t be your only partner in this step. You would also work with your doctor to ensure your goal is safe.
  • Once you have defined your goal, I will help you sketch out your plan for making it happen. This would include working on defining your nutrition targets, your exercise targets and how you will track it all.
  • As part of the planning, we will brainstorm potential obstacles that you are likely to encounter along the way and plan ahead for how to avoid or manage them. These obstacles include mindset barriers and identifying places where you may inadvertently sabotage your success.
  • You aren’t in this alone, so we will talk about your team of experts and supporters who will help you along the way. Similarly, we will plan ahead for how you want to talk to people about your goal.
  • Once you have your plan (actually, even before), you will start tracking your behavior throughout each day (food and drink consumption, exercise, weight, etc.). We will meet every two weeks to review the results. We will identify and celebrate the things that are going well and brainstorm solutions to barriers.
  • Most importantly, I will be cheering you on and supporting you, and we will have a few good laughs along the way!

This is just a sample of how our coaching relationship might work. Our specific approach could be different if there is a better way for you.

How did you become a coach?

I started coaching and mentoring as a leader and manager in my corporate jobs. Every employee defines performance and personal development goals at the start of each year and has a career path that they are trying to pursue. As a leader, I worked to ensure that those goals were defined, attainable and relevant to the employee and the company. As a mentor, I helped people navigate the process of achieving self-improvement. I have played these roles for over twenty years and even started a class that taught dozens of people how to leverage mentoring.

My focus on coaching began to take shape during my weight loss journey. People started coming to me to get my guidance on how they could achieve similar results. This led me to start my blog and write my first book, Operation Melt: How I Used Life-Changing Project Management to Lose Over 100 Pounds in Under a Year. This helped several people begin to achieve their health and other life goals.

I took things a step further when I completed coach training and certification. I have achieved several certifications, which helped me build my coaching skills and gave me an expanded set of tools that I can use to help others. As of today, I have three coaching certifications:

  • Certified Goal Success Life Coach
  • Certified Professional Life Coach
  • Certified Health & Nutrition Coach

Additionally, I believe that project management can be your secret weapon to accomplishing your goals. I have been a project manager for over fifteen years and am a certified Project Management Professional (PMP). This is another tool that I bring to coaching and is an essential strategy for accomplishing goals.

Most of all, I became a coach through practice. I have been a leader or manager to more than a hundred people throughout my career and a mentor to dozens more. Over the past three years, I have coached several people in different areas. Plus, in my general day-to-day life, I love learning about each person’s goals, and I always try to lift them closer to those goals. I have built a significant amount of coaching experience. I have likely helped hundreds of people take the next step toward their dreams.

Can I help you do it too?

What if you haven’t gone through what I am going through?

This is one of the biggest misconceptions in coaching; your coach doesn’t need to have gone through exactly what you are going through to help you. Coaching is a universal skill set, and a good coach will work to understand the nuances of your particular situation and tailor the process to you. Yes, I have gone through many personal transformations through the years, and those experiences can be helpful to my coaching clients. But I don’t need to have gone through what you are going through to help you through it.

I think coaching might be right for me, what’s the next step?

I am excited to hear that you see the benefits of coaching and would like to consider working with me. The first step is to submit a coaching inquiry form via to get started. I will review your information and be in touch soon to set up an initial conversation.

Click here to submit a coaching inquiry form.

Ask Me Anything!

Do you have a question you would like to submit for a future Ask Coach Tony post?

  • Do you want to know more about me? 
  • Do you want to know more about my weight loss journey? 
  • Do you want to know more about my books or my creative process?
  • Do you have a question about how to achieve your goals?
  • Do you want to know more about coaching?

Whatever your question, I am here to help. Ask Me Anything!

If you want to have a deeper conversation and get more one-on-one help, click here to learn more about my Operation Melt coaching services.

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Disclaimer: The Operation Melt website and blog does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The information provided on this website is intended for general consumer understanding and entertainment only. The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. As health and nutrition research continuously evolves, we do not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or timeliness of any information presented on this website.

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