After a personal tragedy, Laura Chamberlin found she was stronger than she knew.
She began searching for tools to help create the life she'd always imagined.She found what worked for her and has been spreading tools and tips for how people can create the life they want as an entrepreneur, artist or wherever life calls you.
At Hacker Lab, her free class "Define your Unique-ability" has been popular among entrepreneurs as has "Design Thinking and You". She's also helped our community find their professional footing and change careers.
You can sign up for her next offerings coming up:
Defining Your Ideal Client on Wednesday, Oct. 20 or Preventing Burnout - Tips for Badass Leadership
on Wednesday, Oct. 27.
Don't miss her new 6-week class starting in October here (members save $25), or stay tuned to future classes at Hacker Lab with Laura by subscribing to our newsletter.
Hacker Lab: How did you get started coaching?
Laura: I had a personal tragedy and was looking for new ways to do my life better; I always felt misunderstood, like I was working so hard and getting nowhere and kept was always exhausted and frustrated.
I just knew there must be a better way. I found Skills for Change in 2012 and became certified to teach and coach, but it took years of cultivating change inside of me before I learned how I best want to share it with others.
HL: What is Skills for Change exactly?
Laura: I think of it as a modality for change and growth. We learn to look at ourselves and those around us with new awareness which teaches us how to harness our own empowerment, how to communicate cooperatively, how we use or don’t use our power, and how to identify and create healthy boundaries in everything we do so we don’t spend our time frustrated and resentful. Well, and so much more, but that’s the short version.
HL: What have you found or learned about our community coaching at Hacker Lab?
Laura: People are coming to Hacker Lab for maker classes and my offerings are a little bit different. I am offering what people think of as “soft skills”. I think Hacker Lab members may wonder why they should take a class on say, Healthy Boundaries for Creatives...but once they invest in the class they see how it will save them from lots of frustrating communication and wasted energy in every interaction and relationships.
I love working with creative people because creative people tend to have an openness and awareness for thinking outside of the box.
Skills for Change offers a different perspective and outside of the box thinking. Hacker Lab creatives really are primed for this.
HL: Can you share some ways your trainings have helped people?
Laura: Sure. I had this client come to me who didn't understand why none of his relationships were working out. In particular he wanted to work on his dating life. He had specific questions in regards to a woman he wanted to ask out. Like, when should he text her back, and how exactly to ask her out. I told him I could help him answer these questions but if he would take the Level 1 training he would get to the deeper lessons that would shift everything. He didn’t want to invest time time or money, but after a few months I heard back from him that I was right, he did need to understand his own empowerment, how to set healthy boundaries and bring more self awareness to his interactions so he could start creating the kinds of relationships he really wanted in his life.
I have a client who is learning to ask for what she wants at work, and she is getting everything she asks for which is delighting her to no end, she never thought it was possible.
One of Hacker Lab's community members said this was better than 10 years of therapy.
I had a recent experience with a photographer who was working with one of her clients who was sucking up a lot of her time. We worked together to figure out what she was willing to do for this client and then came up with a plan on how to share it with her client. The moment my client had clarity of what she needed to do to deal with this difficult client, the relief was visible and she found her empowerment.
HL: What’s your new series about?
Laura: I take students through the 6 basic principles of Skills for Change. These are the foundational tools which have the potential to really impact and transform how we live.
I call it a Skills for Change- Level 1 where we meet one hour per week for six weeks. I space the trainings out to once a week because people need a week in between to really apply the tools and start seeing how the dynamics are playing out in their lives.
I once met with a MSSW, LCSW PhD who specialized in family dynamics. Over coffee she asked me to give her a sample of what I am teaching in this Level 1 class. I grabbed a coffee napkin and drew some charts and explained them in a condensed 15 minutes. She was amazed and said “You just dialed down 15 years of therapy in 3 graphs.” My training isn’t therapy, but it just helps us understand things that are going on around us every day, and once we label it, see it, then we have choice and learn how to enhance our options and opportunities.
The class format is casual, I try to be relatable by sharing my own struggles and how I overcame them. There is always a short check in, then the slideshow presentation portion of class, then there is space to talk out examples and students can bring situations in their lives and we apply the tools and gain new insights and solutions.
The class description is here.
We're so used to looking through our own glasses, once I look through Skills for Change glasses, then we have new choices available to us.
HL: What are people going to get out of the class?
Laura: What comes to mind is what students have told me: People's lives start to change.
I have a client who is so driven by the voice to do good that she is running herself into the ground helping everyone around her. But now that she consciously sees that she is running ragged “to be good” she is backing off all the do-gooding and putting more energy into her family and taking time for herself. She feel so much better and her health is even improving.
I have another client whose husband is depressed and she's learning how to navigate life now and she feels relief for the first time in years. Speaking of mental health, this is huge for helping people understand how to create space for mental fitness. Skills for Change gets to the bottom of how and why we beat ourselves up, blame and criticize ourselves and others..
HL: What else can folks look forward to at HL?
Laura: Marketing your unique-ability has been popular, Design Thinking and You has a nice group of people. I also love teaching 7 Communication Tips for Creatives. I am going to keep creating new classes for Hacker Lab, and am open for requests. I had a request recently to teach Defining Your Ideal Client, that is a really fun workshop which pulls on experience from my marketing background and EVERYTHING I do is steeped in Skills for Change.
Thanks for reading! Take Laura's next class Defining Your Ideal Client on Wednesday, Oct. 20 or Preventing Burnout - Tips for Badass Leadership on Wednesday, Oct. 27. Or explore or sign up for her new 6-week class starting in October - members save $25.