I would never have described myself as a risk taker indeed over 20 years ago when I attended one of my first ever training sessions on coaching we were asked to complete this sentence:  

‘I want to become…………….’  

My answer was ‘more of a risk taker’                      

The coaching that followed was undertaken by qualified coaches who were skilled at listening, curious about what we had to share, challenging with their questions and helpful in enabling us to identify next steps.

What I discovered in the course of that process were many things (including a desire to learn more about coaching and an aspiration to become a coach). 

The most enlightening thing at the time however, was to discover that I was possibly already quite a risk taker in many people’s eyes, down to my interests and hobbies. I had never before seen my life through this lens and believed I could do better.   As a result of the coaching I decided I wanted to own this new persona, embrace these new thoughts and importantly continue to strengthen and grow them.   I found myself consciously pushing myself into uncomfortable stretching areas of work and a new hobby, deep sea scuba diving.  I was becoming more of a risk taker!

What came as a result over the following years were promotions, new exciting challenging jobs, all alongside studying for my coaching qualifications. Then a bombshell in the guise of my husband, having to take forced early retirement.  Difficult enough if it’s a choice, not easy when its imposed.  A difficult year followed and somewhere in all the conversations we were having emerged a scary and exciting new thought.  An opportunity for us to start our coaching business, a risk, we only had one substantial salary coming in and we were about to wave goodbye to that.  It happened, and it was far from ideal at the start, however the business took off, but a huge sense of loss was still being felt by my husband and we realised we needed a much bigger change to help him get back on his feet again. 


A 500 mile house move away from where we had been living very happily for 35 years. Having almost paid off our mortgage we took a huge mortgage out again and with the most amazing piece of luck managed to buy a house in the most wonderful place imaginable.  This clouded the poor decision we took not to have it surveyed at sale!  We discovered later had been close to being condemned!  What a ridiculously stupid risk we had taken!

Surveyors were called, all said it needed demolishing, two years later we found ourselves in a static caravan, on site contemplating a house build project!  There were very many scary moments over the next 18 months, not least when we had a call from the builder to say that the measurements were too small on the slab, that the crane needed ‘special permission’ it would be a 3 month wait, yet everyone else was poised ready to go!  The mistake over the plans, the ridge height was too low and……..  a very risky business!

I was real risk taker now, trouble was I felt like I had over stepped the mark! 

2019 – All well that ends well – Yes we have an amazingly beautiful house, it’s still minor work in progress, we survived caravan living through a very cold winter.  It was snug at times when daughter was back from uni and friends stayed!  Cooking outside was interesting in the winter too.  The fire was a set back but the van survived and most importantly the booze for our son’s wedding which was stored beneath it.

I was challenged on many occasions to turn up to work without mud all over me or wet hair when the electricity failed, but all my clients were either amazing or never knew thankfully!

We have a garage to build and landscaping to do.  We have a large mortgage and bills to pay, we have so much to work for and a great reason to do it.

Would we do it again? Yes you bet!    When you become braver anything can happen!

Lessons learnt? Too many to count, but so grateful for the opportunity to continue to grow and develop in ways we could never have anticipated.   Leadership has so many facets to it many I learnt along the way.

Worth it? Absolutely so many great surprises, Wow! moments and a chance to work with great creators.

Worst thing that could happen now? We sell and pay all our debts and do all the things we have been able to do in the past 5 years.   We all make choices we have to own them, let go of the bad ones and move forward.

Our aspiration is to continue to work with lots of lovely people, to help them discover their dreams, find ways to navigate through the tough times, and live and work at their best in good times and possibly help them to become more brave and bold along the journey.   We certainly have been and still are ‘Open2Change’ for ourselves and would enjoy supporting you. 

We hope knowing more about us and gaining a brief insight into our life journey alongside our coaching, is helpful for you taking your first step towards having an initial conversation with us.


If you’d like to know more please contact me at sue@open2change.org.uk.