(Updated August 2022) - the post below provides some context to my life since 2014 when I decided to step away from the life I had into new ways of living.
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I write this to help you to understand my journey, and for you to get to know me a little better. Note that since November 2021, I have chosen to settle in one place, so the details below are about my journey up until this time.
I am a certified, accredited, and credentialed Professional Life Coach based in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
What does this mean? In short, once I attended and successfully completed my accredited studies with the International Coach Academy (ICA) in 2013, I then immediately sought coaching credentials from the International Coach Federation (ICF).
This learning process meant I chose to further demonstrate my coaching skills once I completed a fully accredited and acknowledged course of study - this ensured my skills were initially acquired, tested, and then tested again by an independent coaching body.
For me, that was merely the beginning of the learning associated with my coaching journey. I have always found personal learning and study much more effective and enjoyable.
Many coaches don't undertake basic training via certification. Fewer coaches than that, get accredited via a recognised coaching school with hundreds of hours of study required to attain accreditation.
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Fewer coaches even still, seek to be credentialed by a recognised coaching body to test those coaching skills.
I chose to do all (credentialed, accredited and certified) of the above. My training is enhanced by my ongoing learning.
In short, I have taken the time to ensure I am, in the words of my coaching school, "trained as a coach to an elite level" (evidenced by my accreditation in the advanced coaching program with ICA).
To be clear here, once I was qualified and credentialed by the ICF I was happy to go it alone, and be totally independent of the structures and the organisation that credentialed me. I am a stand alone coach with no affiliation to any governing body. I work for people first, and I definitely like my independence and autonomy in life.
I am also a former long term public servant, a qualified community services (Associate Diploma of Social Science) worker, a sometimes government contractor in Tasmania, self help author, online entrepreneur, a writer, a handy gardener, and a passionate fisherman as well – amongst many other things I seem to find myself doing in my life.
In the last several years in particular, I have radically, deliberately, and strategically, changed the way I live, and the way I approach my life. The result being a more streamlined and simplified life based around minimalist approaches and philosophies.
At the end of 2014 I decided to leave a wonderful workplace and career in the Tasmanian Government in the Department of Treasury and Finance. After 11 years (2004-2014, then again for a 4 month contract in 2017) working in the Liquor and Gaming Branch in both the Operations and the Compliance teams in Hobart, I decided that I needed to change up a few things in my life (one of the catalysts for that decision being a bowel operation where I lost 15cm of my bowel to a large bleeding polyp in 2014 – reminding me that I wasn’t quite as bullet proof as I thought I was...) as I approached the age of fifty.
The change I needed was much more than that though, as I genuinely wanted to break new ground, and experience new ways of being in, and seeing the world. Conventional living, as wonderful and comfortable as it is, can be stifling and repetitive at times. I like my freedom, and I like to have choices in life.
The need for safety and security, although important, can paralyse us from taking risks or truly living our lives. And living life means taking risks… as I continue to find out, and to be clear here, I am by nature a risk taker in most areas of my life.
Despite the fact that I would be experiencing different ways of living without the security or the certainty that goes with it, I knew that this change was much more aligned to my values and aspirations, and a wonderful way to further develop my spirituality, my life coaching, and my writing.
For someone as relatively free spirited, and as free thinking as I am, I simply needed to experience more and test myself in new ways. Prior to this change, I was comfortable... but restless. I wasn't feeling fulfulled... I knew there was more to my life than that.
The simple fact was that following the well worn path of career, was not ticking all the boxes for me, at least at that point in my life.
In short, I wanted to further develop my intuition and instinct, and to create new pathways of living and experiencing the world – spoken perhaps like a true coach! But then by my own admission, I don’t like to define myself too much with any label/s too tightly – labels change... and so do I. After all, I am much more than a coach and what I do!
In simple speak, I wanted to be tested by life without the usual support systems - I wanted to trust in life and myself in all situations, with minimal resources, and maximum presence - out of comfort zones and into survival mode.
To put the above (and me) into a little more context perhaps, I value IQ, I really value EQ – and then there is SQ.
For me SQ is the bigger picture, and the bigger picture is what drives me on a deeper level.
That said, I don’t like any intelligence measure/s or numbers associated to people – they are limiting and they trap us all into narrow thinking if they are held too tightly.
Throughout the following year (2015) I decided to travel throughout the UK throughout England, Wales, and Ireland, doing Workaway (similar to Woofing – see my ‘Travel Testimonials’ on the Testimonials drop down menu to read about it) in Ireland, Wales and England.
I was also fortunate enough to spend several months in the beautiful Isles of Scilly in the UK during this time doing both Workaway and working on the other side of the bar (my previous role in Treasury had been working for 10 years as a Liquor and Gaming Compliance Inspector where I audited licensees and directed proceedings in front of the bar). An interesting and valuable experience.
I returned to Hobart Tasmania for Christmas 2015 with an open mind to what was next for me. My intent and vision to keep creating new ways of living and to continue trusting in life….without support systems so to speak, meant that I needed to keep open to opportunities – and importantly, to create them. It hasn't always been easy, and it certainly wasn't always the way I had imagined it either.
In simple terms, I continued living my free range lifestyle fully self funded and independent of, and from, structured secure day to day employment, and the safety net. I then created my house sitting business, and further developed my coaching to attract more clients.
One of my mantras in life is to keep open to possibilities, to create opportunities… and never, ever, say never. Life changes – and so do I. It is reassuring and life affirming to know I have a number of gears and approaches to work from in life.
Life certainly has changed dramatically for me since making the decision to transition to new ways of living. I have learned, given, and received so much during this ongoing life journey – experiencing new levels of resourcefulness, resilience, flexibility and adaptability in my life.
I often walk and ride a bike instead of driving a car (note: after more than 3 years without owning a car between 2014 and 2017, I purchased a car in December 2017... and only drive it when I need to), and shorts, T shirts and thongs are my preferred dress code whenever possible. I live life my way.
Further to the above, I have often left the car and public transport options, and taken my backpack and hit the road. These are the times and occasions where I open myself to guidance and trusting in the process of life. To truly experience trust and guidance....you need to experience trusting and being guided.
Most of my wardrobe now fits into a backpack, and the home base is now wherever I happen to find myself.
Pico Lyer once said; "Home in the end of course, is not where you sleep - it's where you stand." It is probably fair to say that I also live a very carbon footprint friendly lifestyle relative to most in the first world at least!
Since 2014 I have slept in more beds and places (I stopped counting after 50), lived with dozens of people, eaten all manner of foods, and shared all kinds of stories and ways of living.
The old fundamental routines of conventional living were literally thrown out the window as change became the constant. Its been refreshing and challenging. The result, as I had hoped, is a greater level of appreciation, gratitude and acceptance for what life provides and reveals.
I’ve slept in caravans, in tents, on beaches, on ferries, buses and trains, cars, couches, sheds, on floors, a park bench in a Churchyard in Penzance, and even in a yurt! I have also been fortunate enough to stay in some very beautiful and luxurious places and surroundings – the contrast of my life during this time has been significant! I’ve also met some very interesting people along the journey... and others.
This experience has helped me generate more ideas, experience new ways of living, and it has opened up new possibilities for me in creating a lifestyle.
Importantly, these experiences have provided me with many opportunities to live my values, my beliefs, and my inner inklings and knowings, and further develop them.
I have had so many moments in my life, particularly in these last several years, where I trusted in life, asked for guidance, boldly took chances and risks, and backed myself in, that it has strengthened my faith and trust in life and myself - there is always a way... always.
A little more about me:
I am also the creator and cocreator of a number of self development and coaching programs. I have well over 30 years experience in the field of personal, spiritual and self development – it is a major passion and a way of life for me.
I have also written a series of self development ebooks (Instinctive Living Self Development Book Series) that is available on Amazon - you can check them out here: Author.to/craigwhedge.
As mentioned earlier, I am a Certified Professional Coach (CPC) and was credentialed as an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) with the International Coach Federation (ICF). My earlier studies involved attaining an Associate Diploma of Social Science in Community Services (Welfare Studies).
I also spent a year in Fremantle Western Australia studying Fishing Operations and Aquaculture – another time in my life where I followed my passions and curiosity and did not think too much about my career. (On that note, I have never sought to have or pursue a 'career' as such).
For me, career has never been an ambition or priority. I have always seen life as being much more than outcome focused ambition - my ambition is to improve and further develop myself and my understandings.
I have always felt that life on Earth was an experience that wasn't an end in itself.
I have also completed dozens of the usual (and the unusual...) self development and professional development courses many of us seem to complete throughout our lives.
A philosophy of mine is to keep adding value and to constantly improve service delivery wherever I find myself.
The ultimate aim and intention being to facilitate a process where individuals empower themselves to take action that serves their businesses and the community - and importantly, helps them to be a better person.
This fits not only with the way I work generally in a conventional working sense, it also strongly represents my life coaching philosophy.
I keep fit and healthy with regular gym and outdoor/park workout sessions wherever I can find, or adapt to, the equipment on offer. Its amazing what necessity does when it comes to adapting exercise to available equipment or structures. Cycling and walking are also a big part of my lifestyle.
Health and fitness is important to me. I live and advocate developing and creating a lifestyle, and a work life balance, that is aligned to personal values – living a life that works for you in other words. Meditation and intermittent fasting are parts of my health and lifestyle approach. To be clear though, nothing is fundamental. Life always changes.
My life long passion is fishing. I love to spend time in and around coastal and natural environments.
I can often be found fishing a coastline or wandering and exploring a beach….in between looking for birds and animals… and fish of course! In fact, a big part of changing up my life was to do much more of this, and to create a life where I had choice.
I love gardening, writing, blogging, creating and learning…in fact I love a lot about life.
I live the life, and the values, I advocate and write about. Selling up and giving away a lot of my possessions, grabbing a backpack, and living life on the road, certainly has been a very valuable experience.
So too has been the recalibration that has happened throughout that process as I have started again so to speak on a new journey of understanding what is important - for me - in life.
For now, this way of living is the life I choose. Next week…? We will see! I am always open to opportunity.
Many of us fail to understand, or recognise, that with effort and intention, we can consciously and deliberately change, and live our lives in (or relatively close to) the moment – if we choose to.
In fact, after living and travelling both in Australia and the UK rent free for 78 of the last 81 months (November 2014 up until November 2021), I now have a body of work and experience that demonstrates how life can be lived if one chooses to step outside of the box and the limitations and expectations that come with it.
*If you would like to learn more about what I do, and how I can help you, and your business, simply go to the contact me form on the home page and I will contact you usually within 24 hours.
*Craig Hedge is a Professional Coach currently based in Hobart (nipaluna) Tasmania Australia. He is the author of the Instinctive Living self development book (ebook and audiobook) series available on Amazon. Author.to/craigwhedge