How I became a Health Coach (& took control of my life)

Reading time: 12 minutes
Learn how I was able to move from being unsatisfied and burned out – to designing and living my life as a health coach and consultant.

Do you know this feeling that you’re not living the life that you want to live, but don’t know how to change it? That was me 1.5 years ago.

Since then, I took several steps to break free from this prison and I feel that my graduation as a Certified Human Potential Coach is the culmination of this. I would like to share my journey with you in the hope it brings some inspiration.

Locked energy

For many years I struggled finding my purpose. I felt like I looked everywhere and actually tried many things to expose myself to new ideas. I went to conferences, events, changed careers, went from corporate to startup, started to write, all hoping to find that magical switch for the light bulb right above my head. However, despite my efforts – all without any luck. I felt there was a lot of energy inside, but I simply didn’t know how to access it.

I hit an all-time low and felt completely burned out.

Despite all my attempts to find my purpose, there was one more event that I felt I needed to attend with the legendary coach Tony Robbins. If you haven’t heard of him, surely, Netflix has recommended you to watch the documentary about him, ‘I am not your Guru’, a couple of times.

However, as I was mentally and physically exhausted, I noticed I was literally unable to make decisions, big or small. Given the lack of clarity about my future, the significant cost and the fact that I had to fly abroad to attend his event, made me feel unable to take this step.

Luckily, I got an unexpected blessing one day when I came home when my wife told me she got me a ticket for the event, booked my flight to London and arranged a place for me to crash at the house of one our dear friends. She saw the position I was in and decided needed a little push in the right direction. I cannot thank her enough.

The 5 lessons that changed my life

I flew to London, met my friend and woke up very early the next day to step inside the roller coaster called ‘Unleash the Power Within’.

Here are the 5 most important things I took away:

  1. Instead of staying on autopilot, I stopped and took a close look at my own internal Google Maps destination. I envisioned arriving at the destination and internalized how I would feel once I got there. It wasn’t good, I can tell you that.
  2. One of the hardest lessons to embody, is to come to terms with your past behavior and to understand this is a natural reaction to protect yourself from harm. Even though a lot of people might not say this about me, I felt very insecure. However, I realized that this helped me prevent rejection, because I often didn’t push myself hard enough and could tell myself, subliminally, that it wasn’t about me, but just about my lack of effort.
  3. I spend a lot of time to map out my core values. Once you (know how to) find them they will tell you in which direction you should head. Simply put: they are your compass for life and allow you to make decisions that lead you in the right direction.
  4. Now that I knew which direction I should be heading, I got laser focused on the exact country, city, street and house where I wanted to travel to. I basically answered the question on how I could live a life in connection to my values, while not losing track of reality. The Japanese call this ‘Ikigai’, which refers to the balance between living your dream, while being able to make a living. Easy to say, less easy to do. However, there is a method to this.
  5. Lastly, it’s essential to realize: Life. Will. Happen. Therefore, I planned through all of the possible scenarios that might prevent me to arrive at my destination. Road block? I already have a secondary route? Low on gas, I fueled up in time. All with the goal to keep driving steadfast in right direction.

Defining my road map

4 days, 60+ hours, a lot of thinking, shouting, crying, writing and (oh yeah) fire-walking later, I came out a different man. I came out as a man on a mission, to be precise.

It is my goal in life to help people become healthier and – as a result – make them better parents, spouses, friends, colleagues or entrepreneurs.’

I decided that it is my goal in life to help people become physically and mentally healthier, for them to become better parents, spouses, friends, colleagues or entrepreneurs.

My message is only as good as its delivery

“My message is only as good as its delivery”

During this 4-day masterclass another light bulb got switched on.

Even though I might have gained a lot of experience of the years in sports and nutrition, I understood that my message could only be as good as its delivery. I experienced first-hand that this was my bottleneck after I talked to people close to me whom I helped to carefully customize supplements to their needs and even had them delivered to their front door. A few weeks later I asked: ‘how is it going with the supplements?’. The words that came back are still engraved in my memory: ‘We didn’t have time to take them’.

Hearing ‘I didn’t have time to take my supplements’ was a game-changer. I then truly felt that my message could only be as good as its delivery.

This made me understand I needed to stop learning everything I could about health and nutrition and needed to focus my attention to getting the message across.

I clearly was the one who failed here.

What does a good coach training program look like?

After I got crystal clear on my values, goals and experienced what the impact of proper coaching can do to someone’s life, I decided to finally take the step and become a coach myself. However, it was clear to me I wanted to approach this in a professional manner.

Therefore, I set out to look for a coaching education that allowed me to fulfill these 4 needs:

  1. Help me improve my delivery, even though I later learned that ‘creating impact’ were the words I was actually looking for.
  2. Further improve the quality of my message on health and nutrition, as I firmly believe that structural change is much easier if the body is in balance. As the old saying goes: ‘mens sana in corpore sano’ (a healthy mind in a healthy body).
  3. Given the fact that the coaching industry is plagued by charlatans, I wanted my program to be highly respected, both nationally and internationally.
  4. The opportunity to be able continue to grow as a coach.

Why did I choose my coach training education?

After an intense search I registered for the US based Human Potential Institute (formerly known as the ‘Bulletproof Institute’).

This program checked all my boxes, as it provided one of the world’s leading coaching educations through various highly experienced, educated and certified coaches.

Furthermore, the Human Potential Institute applies the coaching foundation and ethics of the highest regarded coaching institute in the world, the International Coaching Federation (ICF). This not only increased the quality of the teachings, but also allowed for international accreditation and a continuous path to grow.

Unlike most other coaching programs, this education also focuses strongly on the ability of the coach to help clients improve their physical and mental performance. Through the teachings of a doctor the program provides state-of-the-art science on topics ranging from nutrition to meditation. However, as one of the co-founders is the world’s leading biohacker, it also teaches you how to apply these learning through smart ‘hacks’ in order to create most impact in the shortest amount of time.

As a coach this combination learned me the importance of staying in the passenger’s seat, while being able to become a resource if my clients would ask for a hand.

How do I help my clients as a coach?

After a little short of year with a lot of long days, late hours, trips abroad, classes, coaching sessions, mentoring and extensive studying I am proud to say that I successfully graduated as a Certified Human Potential Coach (CHPC) in February 2020.

This was the first big milestone of the plan I created that allows me to fulfill my life’s goal of helping others. However, well before that time I was helping clients reach their goals, but it became clear that every new day of studying and practicing helped me be of more value to them.

Practically, I do this by helping my clients:

  1. Get clear on their values, goals and limiting beliefs to understand where we should be heading, why we’re heading there, what obstacles we could encounter and how to counter those.
  2. Lose weight, with a customized plan based on state-of-the art science that prevents muscle wasting, the yoyo-effect, excessive toxin release or being tired and hungry all the time.
  3. Improve their health, through better nutrition, sleep patterns and effective physical training.
  4. Apply a data driven approach, which allows me to track progress and course correct based on actual facts.
  5. ‘Try smarter, not harder’ by focusing on ‘hacks’ that make most impact first and working on habits that create a positive domino effect.
  6. Achieve more from their doctors (i.e. by giving recommendations on state-of-the-art blood work or other insightful tests about food intolerances).
  7. By not giving unsolicited advice or being judgmental.

What’s next?

To me it feels like this is the beginning of a journey. Not only am I coaching clients and building my coaching business to make a positive impact in the world, I also want to keep growing. Therefore, I am currently doing a specialization program with i.e. (individual) mentor training to further increase my skill set and become an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) with International Coach Federation.

Furthermore, I am also working hard on an innovative tool that allows me to help more people receive truly customized nutritional advice. With easier access, lower cost and most of the impact. If you’re interested or want to hear from me as soon as this comes out for beta testing, please subscribe to my newsletter at the bottom of this page or send me a message.

Lastly, I started another company where I work as an interim E-commerce and Marketplace Consultant, as another passion of mine is to find creative ways to do business in a smart way. At the moment I am very grateful to work on an amazing e-commerce and market place project for one of the world’s largest (and sustainable) pottery manufacturers.

Thank you

In summary: a whole new chapter in my life, where I took charge of my own faith while doing the things I love and helping others. Without a shadow of a doubt, I can say: I have never worked harder in my life. However, with the right focus, state-of-mind and physical foundation energy flows like it never has before.

A big thank you is in place to the people close to me whom have not only stood by me throughout this journey, but also made it possible. Thank you very much for your time, energy and patience!

Also, a big thank you to the people who have made an impact without realizing. Even though some of it may have seemed like bad luck to me at the time, it has brought me where I am today. For that I am grateful as well.

And lastly, a thank you dear reader as well, for making it all the way to the end. Hope it provided you with some insights, perhaps some inspiration and hopefully a smile on your face.



Roderick de Leeuw

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