CASE STUDY: Fay Doyle
Fay is a prime example of what is possible with commitment and passion.
I decided to keep every word of this interview in its original form as I didn’t want to lose any of the incredible insights Fay shares about her transformation. Her journey is an inspiration to me and I’m sure will inspire you as well.
Enjoy reading her story along with some amazing images Fay and her husband Matt captured.
Please, tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Fay Doyle, I’m an entrepreneur and have been director of my own company for just under five years. I’m an Outdoor and Adventure Photographer, working in partnership with my husband Matt. Together, in the last year or so, we formed FM Doyle, our new business, and this sees me working within the advertising sector, mainly working directly with brands and corporations to bring the lifestyle of their vision and brand to life, in the great outdoors, where their product is intended. I travel extensively throughout the year both completing commissions and exploring this big wide world we live in! I get to work with some incredibly inspiring people working within the adventure community who are constantly pushing their limits and growing past any limiting beliefs. This soul calling is fast becoming the dream that I set my sights on and brought into reality, growing constantly as a business.
I started to have the idea for FM Doyle when myself and Matt got bitten by the hiking bug, and then fast after, a deep connection with nature all around the world. I experienced incredible feelings which I can still only categorise as feeling truly awake and alive; this feeling is one of the main reasons for my constant self-discovery; to work out what this actually is!
What were your challenges before getting a coach?
I actually find it quite difficult to think about the person I used to be before working with Tomas, not because it is painful, but because I have developed so much in this time that the way I felt feels so alien to me now!
I had trouble believing that my soul’s passion could become my reality. I had trouble believing that I could actually enjoy my life, that I could be unapologetic for the things I wanted and the way I chose to live my life.
But it was also much more than that, and I knew that my reflections about my business and my success were rooted much deeper than that; it was my entire being. I was someone who felt that life happened to me and not for me, I was infected with the negativity bug. I felt completely stuck; stuck in my own head, stuck in where I felt I was lacking. I was constantly making decisions based on fear, and I was constantly pained with intense anxiety. Being completely honest, there were some days where my anxiety was so bad that I wished my life would just end. I had a lot of trouble getting my head around the idea that I could be happy and that it was even actually possible to be happy. To anyone else I had everything, but to me, I felt empty. I constantly compared myself to others and judged myself against impossible standards that, actually, nobody was asking me to meet except myself! I was completely scared of the future and was living in the future.
What did you hope coaching would help you with?
I think when I came to Tomas I had known for some time already that I’d really had enough of how I’d been feeling and how I was letting my anxiety and fears stop me going after my big dreams. I had already started working on myself with great results, but I knew I needed more if I was to really go after what I kept saying I wanted! I hoped coaching would help me to work from the ground up on my limiting beliefs and anxieties. The change I really wanted to see in my life was self-acceptance, self-confidence, less procrastination, more action and more of an excited and can-do attitude.
I wanted to feel excited for life, excited for all of the ups and downs I’d face, rather than feeling terrified.
Some of the goals I had were for specific things I wanted to do, specific mountains I wanted to climb and also my general attitude to adventure and what I wanted to build my life around. I could tell that there was someone inside of me who really wanted those things; she was the one who was dreaming, she was the one who was signing up for things, but then on the day, the warring me would come out. I wanted to work on making decisions through the daring me (who actually, in the long run, became the common sense one) much more often rather than the scared me! Some days, when facing fears, I felt like I was being sent to the guillotine, and I wanted to work on pushing past that and doing things anyway.
Tell us about your journey. How did coaching help you? What were some of the highlights and insights?
Some days now I have some of the most intense emotions I’ve ever experienced, some days I feel the most intense levels of joy, I feel wild, I feel free, I feel like I am shaping up into who I am meant to be on a deep fundamental level. I have identified and experienced the best version of me, and every day is an opportunity to experience her as much as possible. Then, most of the rest of the days, I’ve raised the bar considerably for my base level of happiness. When I do have a day when I feel a little low, it’s not the end of the world now and I feel it is so much easier to pull myself out of negative slumps and get back to what feels good and what is important in life. I now feel unapologetic to be me, because I have killed comparison with others.
Coaching has got me to the point where I am too committed to my journey and to everything I want to achieve that I can’t go back; I’ve seen the other side! Tomas said to me once ‘get yourself so far into the journey that you can’t turn back.
At the time, we were talking about a particular mountain I wanted to climb, but really, it has applied to pretty much everything for me since he said it! I now understand the true meaning of what he meant. We were able to quickly address common threads in my behaviour that contributed to my limiting beliefs and work through them. I developed techniques here that I now use on a daily basis to push myself.
I have learnt that achieving the life I want is not down to luck or chance it is down to consistency. I had always thought there was something fundamentally different between me and the highly successful, acclaimed people who I admired. I realised that wasn’t true and that the key difference was something that could be addressed and achieved. It’s not something you’re born with, you work hard for it and it can all be achieved through mindset work, goal setting and consistent action. It’s also about not being scared if something doesn’t go right the first time and you need to find another route; with an abundant mindset coupled with self-belief and action, you see that there are a great number of ways to do something, and your efforts are worthy through the action that has made your expertise a habit.
One of my highlights was developing methods in becoming someone who saw fear as just something I did and going where the resistance was. We worked on the idea of completing 100 mini fears where I would check in most days with what I had done that day to push myself. Those fears started really small, but then they just kept getting bigger and bigger. It got to the point where I was actively looking forward to finding fears to challenge myself with because I looked forward to the feeling of achievement on a daily basis and the rush of endorphins that would create. Now I find myself doing things when I hear my brain say ‘that looks scary’ just to it. That has had a huge effect on my life whilst travelling and adventuring and the things I now do that used to terrify me. It has also helped hugely with regards to procrastination and also pushing my business and being bold where I used to shy away. I made facing fears a habit, it’s just another consistent action.
We can choose to be happy! We have a choice to see the gifts in everything, and we also have a choice to see what is lacking. Abundance has been so important to me, and focusing on what I have, my successes and what I want to achieve rather than what is lacking, my failures and what I don’t want to happen has been so key to my ever-changing mindset shifts. Want to be unhappy? Stay in your head…
What results did you get? How do you feel, and what’s next?
I feel like I am at the very edge of one of the most exciting part of my life so far. Since realising happiness really is an inside job and we have complete control of how to see things, coupled with all the tools, techniques that I have worked on with Tomas which are now just part of my every day, I find myself setting bigger and more ambitious goals than I ever would have imagined. Rather than saying ‘I can’t do’ I find myself either reframing straight away or naturally saying ‘I can do’. I’m becoming much more fearless in my business and the way I communicate, and I am much more confident in my communications across the board. I’m much more fearless with the subject of my business, I’m much more into all the adventures I take and as a result, I’m a much better photographer.
I’m also the fittest and healthiest I’ve ever been and am developing some incredible new relationships and connections with people who are on my wavelength and share my passion for life and adventure. I have a tonne of self-respect and I also have a fast-growing amount of self-belief. Smiling and laughter have become my default and I’ve been told that my positivity is infectious and that my way of looking at achieving and having the things you want is inspirational. That’s who I want to be! I feel proud of myself, I feel authentic.
I know my voice and I know who I am. I can’t fully explain how I feel different, as it is a feeling so complex, but it’s an incredible feeling of pure strength and will. I enjoy life, I look forward to my life! I don’t feel like I work but I probably put in more actual hours now than I ever have. What’s next for me? Some very big things are on the cards for me which I’m keeping sssh about for now, and I’m very excited about the things to come. I also decided to keep working with Tomas for at least the next six months because I believe this is only the beginning for me!
In summary, what did you like about working with me?
I think one of the best benefits of working with you is the accountability. Regardless of what we would work on each session. Knowing that you have someone who you’ve told you’re going to do something, and the idea of telling them that you haven’t done it is usually a great trick to get you to do something you’re resistive of. We know full well that the only person who is really going to be upset if we don’t complete a task to push us further along in life is probably going to be us, but that accountability is key I believe. You’re really supportive of my crazy goals, in some ways, you’ve actually made me realise that I’m not so crazy just because I want to achieve those things because we’re all different. You’re also firm and you’ve called me out more times than I care to remember on my bullshit.
The support you give is fantastic, you can tell that you genuinely care about your clients. You’ve worked your ass off to support me in working my ass off. Working with a coach has been life-changing for me. I know you get out what you put in, and you have to be completely receptive to change, but I genuinely don’t think I’d be as far along on my journey as I am now if I had tried to do this on my own!