Testimonials

Darlene

On the day I started life coaching with Hava Kohl-Riggs, I was trapped in a career that I had "settled for" during college. We were living in a house that I did not feel comfortable in because it lacked character. I was feeling the distance between the adventurous young person I had been and the verbally camouflaged professional I had become. Hava encouraged me not to compromise on any of these things. As a result, we are now living in a house that is much more interesting. I'm returning to school this year to pursue a more communicative career. I have also become more outgoing and changed my appearance significantly.


David Goodman, M.D., M.P.H.,C.I.M.E.

Working with you as my coach has been an enriching, enlightening, and very challenging experience. In a few short months of working with you I feel as if I have made tremendous and significant strides in my personal growth. This is reflected in my experiencing a consistent level of well-being that is beyond that of any other time in my life; by feeling passionately about all that life has to offer; by generating relationships that are satisfying, fulfilling, and filled with wonder.

With your coaching, I feel as if for the first time in my life I am actually grounded and have a firm foundation to stand on. This has been the result of my finding my Self. Before working with you I was being pulled in many directions, not knowing which way to go and sometimes going in all directions at once. I was feeling my life was fragmented and I was being stopped from getting that which I truly wanted. I was feeling that I was capable of great things but not being in life such that I was fulfilling on my potential.

Through your coaching, my life has altered, and I have transformed my relationship to life, loving the life I live and being the inspiration that others similarly love their lives, ultimately leading to the enrichment of the human experience.

This is it! We only have this life to lead (that we know of), and with your coaching, I am making the best of it for my Self, my Family, my Friends, my Community, and for Everyone.

Thanks, coach!


Diane P., Psychotherapist

I decided to try coaching because I was at a point in my life where I felt stuck on several levels-there were decisions and projects I had been wrestling with in my head but not moving forward on.

At the time I was not sure if I wanted coaching or therapy but I listened to my intuition and decided to do coaching first.

Something told me that getting help with ACTION was the most important thing. It was also very valuable to me that Hava had been a therapist and had those skills. I knew there were emotional underpinnings to my inability to move forward, and I wanted to work with someone who could be sensitive and knowledgeable to those issues without necessarily putting all the focus on them.

Hava proved to have just the right combination of awareness, empathy, warmth, and get-to-business-orientation to make the whole process come together for me. I found that if I followed through on the action steps I was given, the emotional stuff moved along too, and both were addressed. To me this was the biggest gift and the biggest surprise.

As a result of working with Hava in coaching I have gotten through some of the biggest hurdles I had, and have made the changes I wanted to make. She's also helped me gain a kinder perspective on myself and my relationships, and given me emotional and practical skills to look at current and future challenges differently.

More than education, different than psychotherapy, coaching really is the best of both venues for change! I'd highly recommend it to anyone who wants to get "unstuck".


K.

Thank you for helping me get a realistic perspective on my skills and the values I bring with me to the job, for helping me see the value of the skills I have, for helping me restore my self-confidence, for always seeking to help me understand, rather than judging myself.

Two months ago I was in a work setting where I was feeling more diminished daily. I knew I needed to make a change, but it was hard to stir up the energy and guts to go out and look for a better job from that spot. Luckily, I learned a long time ago that I can't do everything by myself-and that I don't want to.

I always work better and faster when I work with someone who cares about my success. So Hava was a perfect coach for me.

She boosted my self confidence so I had no apologies for the set of skills I brought to a job, she kept me rooted in what gave me energy - the things that are in sync with who I am and not what external voices tell me I should be or do. Hava made it fun. She kept me rooted in the possibilities for me. She asked pointed questions designed to help me see I needed and wanted, not what others think I should do or be. She focused on learning. If I didn't do an assignment, she looked for what motivated that...

Transforming: From feeling like I'm "not enough" to recognizing the unique skill set and the strength of my personal values.

I am so grateful for Hava's coaching. Thanks to Hava, today I have a job working with people who are doing work I find worthwhile, with people who I share values with, for a pay that is commensurate with my responsibility, and where I feel valued for who I am and the strengths I have.

Thoughtful questions, total support, no shaming, quest for understanding and learning, honest feedback, all designed to help me move forward, get unstuck and make choices that helped me find the best opportunity for me.

Strong questions that helped me listen to what I wanted and quiet the messages to please others. Able to cut to the core issues. Honesty in a very supportive environment. Clearly she worked to help me achieve my goals-not hers. Attentive. Perceptive. Honest.

Working with Hava was transforming and energizing. It made a scary life change enjoyable and manageable.

Thankfully, I've learned that I don't have to do everything alone. Finding a job is a lonely proposition and it was great to have Hava on my side

Hava gave me self confidence, helping me see that while I don't fit in "everywhere" or just "anywhere" I would be very valuable to the place that needs the skills and person that I am.

Hava helped me see my own strengths, expect to find an employer who valued my skills and my values.

Hava will help you grow as fast as you want to. All the change is in your hands, but she is there cheering you on, encouraging you to listen to yourself,


Bethany Gola, artist and owner of Out of the Gallery Arts
www.outofthegalleryarts.com

 

When I began working with Hava I knew that there was a larger purpose to my life. My difficulty was accepting and embracing it with love and passion. Fortunately, when the moment came that I stepped into and owned my life's purpose, Hava was with me. My eyes filled with tears and my heart filled with joy. I'll never forget what she said, "feels like home, doesn't it?"

Those words are the best way to describe what Hava does. She helps you unite your body, spirit, and mind to a place where you feel peaceful, protected, and loved - at home.

I graduated from college thinking I knew exactly what I was supposed to do: land a job in a great advertising or graphic design agency. In fact, my last semester was geared toward that goal. Just like the other 25 student colleagues. What I forgot is that I have something else to give. Each of our lives are different why did I think I'd be happy following the stamped-out path?

What I yearned to do was combine the things that I love and do them with courage and confidence. Starting my own business was only a faint dream. The scary thought is that without the encouragement and guidance of my coach, I may never have pursued that dream. It would have been "something I've always wanted to do" but today, now, I am doing it! After less than two months of coaching, Out of the Gallery Arts is up and running, and I am happily earning a living designing and painting murals, producing books, tile art, and creating just about any other fine art project that interests me! I have bigger plans to expand my business, too, and, working with Hava as my coach, I know I'll achieve those goals.

The best athletes have talented gifts - but not for a second do they think that the next step will come easy. Living your purpose is the same- it's hard work. There are times when it's uncomfortable, emotional, and strenuous. That's when I know I'm working. That's when my coach keeps me going, on track. As my coach, Hava, holds and treasures my vision while I run my marathon. It's a lot easier with someone skilled dedicated to helping me move forward.

Smart people get help from others - I heard that somewhere and I believe it! In a world where we are so independently driven in our professional and personal lives, the concept may be difficult. Every four years, though, this same world stops to cheer the Olympics - we value the spirit of teamwork, determination, and success. Is it so difficult to value those same attributes in our own life?


Nancy Denman
Denman, May & Associates

Through working with Hava--I was able to see what was important to me for both my business and personal life. I was able to focus on what steps I needed to take to reach my goals.

Not only did Hava help me to clarify what course of action was needed--it was clearly the easiest route to quickly achieve what I set out to accomplish.

As an individual, it is so easy to get caught up in the same routine--with the help of a professional--they are objective and know precisely what to do to get you going in the right direction.


Carol Hermann Madison, WI

I can highly recommend Hava as a personal and professional coach. When I first met Hava, I was immediately impressed by her insight as well as her ability to communicate powerfully and poetically. I found our coaching sessions to be supportive and inspiring. When I first began working with Hava, my goal was to find fulfilling paid work that supported my primary "work" as a parent. Within one year, I found exactly that, and my coaching relationship with Hava was crucial in helping me achieve this goal. Hava was incredibly skilled at helping me to clarify my values and reminding me of what I was committed to when external influences distracted me from the "path." Hava also supported me in strengthening my parenting by coaching me in the use of Holding Time; this has allowed me to maintain a close connection to my son despite being away from him several hours a day while at work. Prior to my work with Hava, I would not have thought maintaining such a connection possible if I was employed outside the home. I always felt energized and "ready for action" after our coaching calls, especially when it came to making difficult decisions. It has been several months since our last coaching call, but I continue to use what I have learned from working with Hava on a regular basis. She is a great person to have in your corner, whatever your goals may be!


Terri Niemczyk
Mother and Physician’s Assistant
Madison, Wisconsin

When I came to you for Personal Life Coaching, it was as if I was standing out at the edge of a forest, very confused. I had no idea which way to go and things were a jumble, a mess in my head.

Now, I’m on a path; I’m definitely going somewhere.

Hava, as my personal life coach, sometimes you were a life mentor, sometimes "a mom" (in the best sense of the word!). You are an advocate for me, a teacher, and always gentle and accepting. You had no trouble "forgiving" what I thought of as my failures, and you taught me to forgive myself and learn to understand failure as learning opportunities.

What have I accomplished as a result of our work together? Specifically, I’m more fit and have more energy, my work and family priorities are clear to me, I’ve learned what’s most important to me and I make choices that are in line with those values. I’m getting involved in relationships that are better for me, and I’m setting limits that improve relationships that were not serving me so well, I’m speaking up for myself, and say "no" when I want to. I’ve started on a major home remodeling project, my home is a more comfortable place to be in. Most importantly, I’ve started to figure out what I want to do with my time in life and then I’m going out and doing it!


Lucinda Engel Madison, WI


I don't suppose you listen to the same music I do but some time ago there was a headbanger tune out that captured my mind. My mind would chant "in spite of my rage I am still just a rat in a cage". When I wasn't thinking of something my mind would revert to that chant over and over for weeks, months, and on.

I was caught. So cloistered for so long I had no sense of direction, no point of reference. Afraid to even enter the maze that would potentially take me out.

Hava helped me locate my compass. Without her I'd still be looking at the entrance of that maze.

Not much more than one year later I have a new career, learned a lot about myself, and gained new friends whose priceless insight and advice I will have now and forever.

In sharing my new trail I traveled it with the fun-loving fearlessness others note me for but I could never quite manage to muster in affairs of my own.

Thank you, Hava. You have been a large part of changing the trajectory of my future. A small amount of change in trajectory, you know, makes a much larger difference in the end destination. So the adventure begins. It was fun and will continue to be. If it's not fun I'm going the wrong way.

I know where to find my compass. I can go anywhere now.


Lisa Jiardini
Coach-In-Training
Madison, WI

It’s amazing how, just a short time ago, I was feeling stagnant and without direction.
Thank you, Hava, for helping me find my true voice – I thought, perhaps, it was forever lost to me.


I have appreciated your many gifts and skills that you have brought to the coaching partnership, especially your willingness to share relevant personal experiences, as well as your mighty enthusiasm about my ideas, goals and progress –you are a wonderful cheerleader!

I have been particularly impressed by your ability to reframe a negative self-view into a positive one and to see criticism as a learning experience, not as a reflection of failure.

Finally, I have felt encouraged and propelled forward by your support and advice. This experience has made, and will continue to make, a positive impact on my life, especially upon my new chosen profession – life coaching!


Allison Gritton
Principal, Gritton Design
Madison, Wi.

I have been working with Hava since the end of last year and have been very pleased with the coaching experience (I hadn't done this before) and with Hava in particular.

Hava's style is very "no nonsense" and she has an ethical underpinning to her approach that was a perfect fit for me. She offered a mix of very practical and specific "techniques" to use in situations I wanted assistance with and she also offered a respectful, professional moral support that I personally benefited from. Her support included positive feedback for progress made or skills I displayed (but may not have recognized and taken ownership of) and she also didn't hesitate to point out areas where I sabotaged myself or needed to do some work to be more effective. I appreciated both kinds of feedback.

In terms of whether or not the coaching progressed as I expected it would...that's difficult to say because I didn't have clearly defined expectations not having done this before. If anything, I think I was pleasantly surprised at how useful it was.

Hava assisted me with a number of personal, family and professional goals. I think the best way to sum it up was that I had a lot of valuable "raw material" floating around as unexpressed potential and I needed help bringing my insights, experiences, energies and drive into a more focused plan of action for my life. I had always heard people talk about having a personal mission statement or having some unique "gift" to express in the world and I felt like I could never zero in on this kind of clarity for myself. I have a deep spiritual faith which is of course a compass so I was looking not so much for the values that guide my life as how I express what is uniquely me in my business and in my personal life. One of the most valuable aspects of this work with Hava has been getting that clarity for myself.


Donald K., Madison, Wisconsin

Hava's coaching has helped focus my efforts on the things in my life that are most important. Working with her has challenged me to make sure that my own needs are met, and helped me find clearer ways of thinking about the issues in my life. Working with her, I clarified that my primary commitments in my life right now are to my children's care and to my own self-care. I have made wiser choices in my romantic relationships. I have given myself permission to say no to demands others make on me. Because coaching is much more concrete than therapy approaches I have tried in the past, I have been able to make concrete progress at reshaping my life in my own best interests.

 


Hava Kohl-Riggs, LCSW
Phone: 608-238-7400
Fax: 608-442-3307

email: hava@soscoach.com