Stephanie Patzer freely admits, what she does isn’t for everyone.
Patzer is a life coach. “A personal trainer for your heart, mind and soul,” says her Capture Kismet website, adding her businesses goal is “empowering women in motion.”
“I know it seems hokey to some people,” Patzer said of her work. “And I’m okay with that. If you’re not comfortable or engaged in it, you’re probably not my client anyway.”
Like many during the pandemic, Patzer found herself quarantined and closed off. The mother of two who has worked in sales, been a teacher and owned her own boutique business, looked inward and found an outward purpose: what if she could turn the growth she experienced having a life coach into a business doing the same for others?
Patzer would use her quarantine to earn her life coach master’s certification from the Transformation Academy, a Florida-based online company and leader in purpose-driven entrepreneurship. A business coach helped move Patzer’s fledgling business forward with marketing and determining what her business goals were and who she wanted her clients to be.
“She helped me figure out what kind of clients I want,” Patzer said. “Do I want clients that kind of align with the way that I think or do I want any clients?”
Patzer launched Capture Kismet last summer as the only Mills County area business providing women’s empowerment coaching. Her clients would be any woman she felt like she connected with and was comfortable with her particular brand of intention and authenticity.
“I always want people to know that conversations are just conversations,” she said. “There’s never any pressure from me. I would rather let people know this is out there because if I’m not their coach maybe somebody else will be. I feel it’s an important part to have an accountability partner if you have some intentional work you’re wanting to do.”
Six years ago, Patzer had never even heard the term “life coach.”
It was only after attending a yoga retreat where many of the attendees, most hailing from the East or West coasts, made reference to their many life coaches did she educate herself.
“Them having a life coach was the same as you and I drinking water,” Patzer said. “It was part of their daily routine. I was curious so I sat down and talked about it.”
She’s had her own life coach ever since.
“In the world we live in, five years later, people are probably familiar with the idea but sometimes when I say what I’m doing and what my business is I get, ‘What is that?’”
What THAT is can vary by client and, certainly, by life coach. Patzer sees life coaches and therapists under the same umbrella.
“A therapist may look back more on what trauma you’ve encountered or what happened in your past in order to move forward,” she said. “A coach, my job, what I do with my clients is I look at what goals do they want to reach and what is in front of them they are interested in and we create the baby steps to get to that goal.”
She took on her first client last August and has had a steady base in a variety of programs since. Her “Course to Courage” program, with a curriculum designed by Patzer, runs eight weeks. Her Women’s Circles, which centers on themes important to women for 90 minutes each week, has been meeting via Zoom during the COVID pandemic.
The intentional work of the group can often be heavy and enlightening.
“They dig into heavy topics like anti-racism,” Patzer said. “We’re going to talk abut toxic masculinity and using our voice in a world that wants us to be quieted. There’s been some intense topics and it’s been fabulous.”
The Glenwood Area Chamber of Commerce recently contracted with Patzer to run a nine-month leadership coaching program. She and six other women meet monthly to discuss how to improve communication, creativity and motivation in business and employees. It’s part guidance, part school and part support group.
“The theme is leadership,” she said. “It’s mindful leadership, it’s thoughtful leadership and it’s compassionate leadership. We are in times where there is a lot of black and white thinking. This is a way to maneuver through that talking about intent versus impact and to study intentions within your own world that can cross over into the world at large.”
The goals of each client – whether in groups, the leadership program or the individual – that seek Patzer differ but all focus on recognizing and overcoming roadblocks to self-improvement.
“Some of my clients want to have better relationships with their children, for some of them it’s been more career goals, some have been wanting to start a business,” she said. “My job is to deal more with what’s holding you back.”