Will the Real Health Coach Please Stand Up?


Hi, I’m Angelle Batten, IIN Class of 2005 (Live Program) and 2012 (Distance Learning Program), and founder of AngelleBatten.com, where I teach moms to feed their family healthier one manageable step at a time.  Along with health coaching, you’ll find me hanging out with my husband, three kids, and big black dog Oliver.  I have been known to travel for days just to eat at a real foods restaurant and I collect more recipes than I could ever possibly use. You can connect with me on my blog, Facebook, and Twitter.

I remember that even as I was on the phone enrolling at IIN back in 2004, I was questioning my sanity.  “Me…a Health Coach? Really?  I already have my Masters in Education and I actually love teaching.  This is crazy.”

But I also remember the buzz I felt inside every time I read about IIN’s Health Coach Training Program – the guest teachers, the curriculum…the way graduates were so passionate about helping other people.

When I tuned into my gut, it was a no-brainer.  Sign-up. Don’t overthink it.  Because when I started to think too much about whether I could actually be a REAL Health Coach, the self-doubt didn’t just creep in.  It jumped in and took over.

“Can I really help people?”  (Even though I was already doing that for free.)

“Can I keep up with all the learning when I have three kids under five?” (Even though I was already squeezing in hours a week of reading about nutrition and health on my own already.)

“Can I handle what my friends and family are going to think about me becoming a Health Coach?” (Even though they already thought I was a health nut.)

And the very practical question…

“Can I afford to do this, not to mention make money doing it?”

It’s been almost eight years since I decided to listen to my gut and go with that little buzz I felt when I imagined myself becoming a Health Coach.  So what’s happened since?  That one door has opened up and I’ve created opportunities and experiences I never imagined (or would have felt confident enough to pursue) when I enrolled at IIN.  I’ve coached and taught thousands of parents and children; I partnered with a physician and created an online business; I co-founded a national non-profit and launched it with the actress Selma Blair; I’ve connected with leaders in the field like Dr. Mercola, Sally Fallon-Morrell and Dr. Josh Axe.

And you know what?  In the midst of all these accomplishments, some days I feel like a game show host with perfect hair and a smooth voice is going to walk in and ask, “Will the real Health Coach please stand up?”  And, for a minute or two I will be looking around to see who she is…only to realize she is me.

Every time I’ve talked with another Health Coach about not having the confidence to do this work, they describe feeling that same self-doubt.  It’s normal, and actually a bit healthy.  This little bit of “I’m not sure I can really do this” helps keep us grounded and authentic. 

What I’ve learned is that the confidence and certainty you want to feel about being a Health Coach, whether you’re just thinking about enrolling at IIN or you’ve been coaching for years, doesn’t just fall into your lap.  You can’t wait for the day you have total confidence before you step into this path. You don’t find confidence and no one gives it to you.  You create confidence. One. Manageable. Step. At. A. Time.

This past month I launched my first virtual program. Talk about having some self-doubt.  Despite all the coaching experience and the knowledge I have, I almost didn’t push the “go” button on this project.  I almost let self-doubt stop me. But the Universe gifted me with 70 people who signed up.  Seventy people who trusted me … the real Health Coach. 

Talk about nervous.  But, one manageable step at a time, sometimes barely feeling like I was a step ahead of where I needed to be, I rolled out the program.  And, with every action I took in this new adventure, I created more confidence.  The feedback from the moms has been so positive.  And they are asking me for more coaching support. 

I wish there were a magic smoothie recipe I could give you and you would have the confidence to step into your dreams as a Health Coach.  Instead, what I want to tell you is that you just have to take the first step…and then the second step…and one step at a time you create that confidence you so want to feel.  With each person you coach into living a healthier happier life, you realize this decision was the best decision you could have ever made for yourself.