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  • Amina Aitsi-Selmi

Be ‘weird’ and wonderful (and make a difference). [Wise Wednesday]

Asking for feedback can feel like self-flagellation. But it can change your life by giving you a powerful reframe.


I’ve been asking some of my clients what they value in coaching with me.


One dear client whose husband and daughter have also worked with me 1:1 or in the Leaders Circle simply replied: ‘we love your approach!’ Others gave more detail.


And it reminded me of the importance of being weird.


The gold is in the weird.


When I started out as an independent coach, my learning was focused on coaching and business basics. 


But as you progress in a line of work, your deeper interests – that some might consider weird or nerdy - start to come in and create your unique, authentic style and substance. 


The trainings I’ve been choosing these past 2 or 3 years have started to reflect my deeper interests which can come across as weird or nerdy…


Gratefully, my clients’ feedback reminded me that even though my interests may be unconventional coach trainings, the deeper strands of thought I bring have a positive impact.


Legends: K is a senior doctor in a national hospital. He said that he valued the coaching combination of spirituality, science and strategy. S, a VP in a global organisation, appreciated that I could frame her challenges within a wider context of hidden power (and do it with humour). This draws on a long term interest in sociology and spiritual practice (or consciousness transformation). While these interests can seem militant or woo-woo respectively, they help to change people’s lives through integration with coaching.


So if you think that your weird or nerdy interests are…well…weird or nerdy, let me reassure you that they are part of what makes YOU unique. They are what helps you make a difference in the world.


Below, I’m sharing a few of the trainings I’ve done in the past 12 months that were on my ‘keep quiet because it’s a bit weird’ list. Do any of these seem relevant to your journey?...


1.    Regular practice in Surrendered Leadership (a Circling method which is up and coming but a bit new age and intense for most).

2.    A 10-week course on soulmaking meditation and energy body work (you won’t find many scientists here…)

3.    Learning about questioning money and patriarchal social psychology (errm, how many business owners want to question money?!)

4.    A course on decision making through Christian mysticism (not small talk material)

5.    A year-long training on nonviolent leadership in times of uncertainty (OK, this is kind of mainstream).

6.    Joining an intentional community for 10 days to explore conscious ways of living (no comment!)

7.    Attending trainings on decolonising business and coaching (completely unhelpful when networking with hustling entrepreneurs).

8.    A year-long course on Western philosophy (are you snoring, yet?)

9.    Learning about ecological economics (what’s this got to do with career coaching, Amina?...)


Apparently, people hire me when conventional coaching or therapy doesn’t cut it. C said she knew I was the right coach for her because I didn’t get her to set goals! But we did help her become more self-compassionate, get her out of a toxic environment and onto a new path beyond her old role.


Go weird, not wide.


The world has enough cookie-cutter humans. It needs more weirdos!


It’s your weirdness that makes you unique and irreplaceable (not overworking or people-pleasing!) 


[For a previous WW on why your weirdness is a gift see here]


What makes you ‘weird’ but better at what you do? Celebrate this. Amplify it. Integrate it into your mission.


Have a great week,


p.s. Ready to amplify your voice next year? Join me for a Boundaries Clinic: Prioritise your needs without sacrificing your purpose. Rapidly address leaky personal and professional boundaries and start 2024 energised and focused. For free registration here => 


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