Ep 46: From Stuck to Thriving with Aubry Martinez-McGraw
Ep 46 From Stuck to Thriving with Aubry Martinez-McGraw
What if life coaching could help you navigate your life with confidence, even when adversity arises? Join me as I talk with one of my amazing clients, Aubry Martinez-McGraw about her journey in life coaching and how it has impacted her life.
Aubry shares her background, which includes teaching math at an alternative high school and being a certified life coach, and how her coaching niche has shifted from focusing on youth to college athletes.
Together, we explore how Aubry has learned to process emotions differently, leading to a positive change in the way she shows up in her life. By investing in herself, she has created an eternal ripple effect and now uses the tools she has learned to navigate her life with confidence.
What you’ll learn in this episode:
How Aubry navigated her journey from struggle to success
How she embraced change and learned to unlock her potential
How Aubry learned to separate identity from external circumstances
About Aubry: Aubry Martinez-McGraw is a certified life coach, mother to three beautiful sons, wife, and former collegiate athlete. She holds a M.S. in Psychology with an emphasis in Life Coaching along with a B.S. in Sport Management. In 2021, she embarked on a career in life coaching, and never looked back. When she discovered the power of coaching and working with a life coach herself, her world changed for the better.
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Welcome to The Mom on Purpose Podcast. I’m Lara Johnson, and I’m here to teach you how to get out of your funk, be in a better mood, claim more with your kids. Manage your home better, get your to-do list done and live your life on purpose with my proven method. This is possible for you, and I’ll show you how. You’re not alone anymore. We’re in this together. Welcome to The Mom on Purpose Podcast, we are here with one of my amazing clients, and I always tell them that once I become their life coach, I’m always their life coach because I love them so much. And so, I wanted to invite her on today to talk about some of the things that she learned when we were working together and how it’s still making an impact in her life right now, even though it’s been, gosh, I don’t even know how long, maybe a year since we’ve worked together about a year. Her name is Aubry Martinez-McGraw, and she lives in Colorado, and she’s got three little boys. She just had a baby right before me, so we got to be pregnant together. And every once in a while, she comes to Utah to visit and I get to see her, which is always one of my most exciting things. So that’s one picture I cherish is. Last time I saw you, we both had our little pregnant mountain together. It was so cute. So, I’m going to have her introduce herself, and then we’ll talk about how we met and some of the things that she took away from our coaching together. So, Aubry, please introduce yourself, tell us a little bit about your story and your background. Aubry: Sure. So, like Lara said, name’s Aubry. I found Lara when I was in just a really hard place. I was spinning different ideas around in my head of what I could do for a career, and I found Lara in a Facebook group and reached out to her because I had actually thought about becoming a life coach, and I didn’t know what life coaching was really like. I kept hearing about it, and I asked Lara if she would answer a few questions for me, and I remember I was on a call with her in the Walmart parking lot up in Utah while I was visiting my parents and. I remember just realizing by the time I hung up the phone with her, she had answered all my questions and then I was like, oh my gosh, I need a life coach. I need someone that can help me. And I knew I had to figure out like how to work with Lara at that point in time. And I guess that’s like a background of how we met each other. And then a little bit about me. Lara said, I have three boys. I am currently teaching math at an alternative high school here in Colorado. And I also am a certified life coach through the Life Coach School, and I have my Master of Psychology with an emphasis in life coaching. I did end up going that route of becoming a life coach, and I love it. Like it’s my purpose. It’s what God has called me to do and it’s, I don’t know, it’s just exciting to be in that realm and to serve people in that way. It’s just very fulfilling to me. Lara: You have to tell them what you focus on too, because that evolved over time too. So, when we started working together, you were teaching high school but didn’t know which route you wanted to take yet as far as additional schooling. And you have some ideas on what you wanted to do, which I think is really interesting, as I think back about some of our beginning coaching. It was a very different than what you’re doing now. So, tell us a little bit about how you started, like ideas you had on who you wanted to coach and who coach now. Aubry: So initially I thought because I work with the youth that come from difficult homes and, I love girls and I love women and I really wanted to like work with youth that are the kids that I serve, and I wanted to coach them, but as time went on, I have actually realized that I want to work with college athletes. I was a college athlete myself and I played at three different schools and had the highest of highs and some of the lowest of lows. And I know how hard it can be as a college athlete. And I know that, and I’ve seen it because I’ve worked with some athletes, and life coaching can help them in so many ways. On the court, in the classroom, relationships, injuries, there’s so many and there’s a million other things that they deal with. And so that’s the route that I’ve taken and I’m a life coach for college athletes. Lara: Which I think is so cool. And the fact that you are still teaching, so you’re still serving that public, the teenagers that you work with, because it’s just radiating out of you. Like everything about you, just creates these skills and you’re able to help them. So, I think it’s really cool that even though your niche has shifted a little bit, you’re still fulfilling that. Aubry: And during the day when I’m working with students, because I’m not up in front of a classroom teaching, I get to sit down and have a conversation with students, and I actually have done a presentation on overcoming adversity for our students, and they’ve found that to be so helpful. And so, they’re, life coaching can help anyone and it’s nice that I get to incorporate that in my job that I have right now. Lara: I think that’s so cool. So, tell me what were some of your big takeaways when we were coaching together? I know which ones that like I remember, but I’m curious your thoughts on some of the ones that have really stuck with you that we, that would be beneficial to anybody listening to this episode. Aubry: Okay. If I’m going with the biggest one, it involves, God and becoming like him and becoming like who we’re supposed to be. I’ve always, I guess when I come into contact with people, I feel like I can immediately like, see their potential. I believe in people. I hope for them, like I know they can do great things. And I saw that for myself when I started working with you. And I realized that, life, like we go through these struggles, and we go through some great times, and all of it is to help us become like God. I like to think of our current self. I like draw a picture of this like a circle and you have your current self and then. You draw another big circle and it; I don’t think the end of the circle actually exists but that’s our potential that we can’t even see. Like we don’t even know what our potential is. But how we get there, how we get closer to fulfilling our potential is by trusting God and by taking. Tiny steps, and by turning to him when we need help or we need answers and even just paying attention to the recurring thoughts that we have that inspire us and fill us with light and excitement and joy, like those are the things that even though it might be hard to take action, to go do those things. Like those are the things that like God has put in our lives or put in our minds for us to do so that we can fulfill our potential. So that’s one of the main things that I feel like I learned working with you. Lara: I want to pause there for a second because, okay. I think that to me was the overarching theme that I saw in you is that, even though it was hard, you had such a joy that came into your life. And it was like you shifted from feeling so heavy about the hard things to believing that you could work through the hard things, and that there was just a lightness that really started to come into your lightness, like physical, like you felt lighter. It didn’t feel like the hard things were as hard. But also, lightness as like your light shown brighter. And so that was really cool for me to see that. That started radiating off of you even more. And that was, I remember I mentioned this to you not long ago on, it was right after New Year’s, so it wasn’t this New Year’s, it was the one before. And I remember you just got on the phone; you were just like in tears. And we were talking about how painful New Year’s used to be for you. And how ecstatic and excited you were that you were actually achieving goals. And so, this New Year’s, a couple years ago was. So much more fun. And so much more joyful because it didn’t signify you not reaching your goals. It was actually like an exciting time because you were doing everything you felt called to do. Aubry: I was doing that, and it wasn’t the new year it was just a part of who I am now, where it doesn’t have to be a big startup, a big, monumental time to start a goal. Like I just was continually doing that and yes, that was very like, healing and like relieving for me. Lara: The other thing that I remember, and I love your thoughts on this, is, do you remember when we were coaching about your house and you were like really discouraged about things in your house that were a mess, and then I told you to start listing all the things that you were doing. Do you remember this? You’re like, “wow, I’m actually doing a lot.” So, talk a little bit about that. Aubry: I think it’s so easy just to fixate on the things that we’re doing wrong. And I have learned that one of my skills is not necessarily being like super organized within my home. And that that’s okay. Like I know there’s things I can do to change that if I want, but also like I don’t need to beat myself up over it. But when I made that list and I was able to see all the things I was doing as a mother, as a wife, as a coworker, as someone serving students, someone who was in school like I was accomplishing a lot of things. And just because my house doesn’t look like the Instagram houses it didn’t mean that I was a failure. It meant that I was just taking care of other things and that was okay. Lara: How much easier was it to take care of things in your house once you had that realization? Aubry: It’s a lot easier. I think it really comes from like the feeling that I, you know, because we know that thoughts create feelings, and that feeling drives like it’s it just really drives, like I know things really stem from the thought, but it’s that feeling to me that just either sends me one way or the other. And one thing that I remember very, like not very much when working with you is like that feeling of. Proud for me. When I feel proud, I feel like I can conquer the world. Like I can do anything when I am proud of myself. And that’s I think what happened there is you asked me, what are you doing well in your life? Like where you feel like you’re being successful and that helps me to feel proud. And when I feel proud, like I said, I can conquer the world. Like that feeling just really fuels me to do so many things. And so that’s a really big part of my life now is remembering that feeling. Lara: And I think it was the week after that you had got on and as soon as you felt proud, you went and did all this stuff and it was like everything you wanted to do, but you couldn’t like force yourself to do it. But the second you felt proud, you just went and did it without even thinking. It was just really cool to see that shift. Tell me, how has your relationship with your husband and your kids, how has that shifted since working together? Aubry: It’s shifted a lot. Like I think about, I’m an empathetic person and so if somebody is sad, like I will feel sad with you and that’s always just been like who I am. Somebody starts to cry, I’m crying with you, and I don’t know why but that also comes with other emotions of someone being upset and there were times like we all get frustrated, right? And my husband might be frustrated about something. You’re mad about something. And I thought that I had to feel that same way too. And I remember when you taught me, I didn’t have to feel that way, that like he’s feeling that way because of what he’s thinking. And I can think something different, not have to feel that way if I don’t want to. Was such a relief for me, and I think it really helped our relationship because even though he was having a hard time, it didn’t meant that I had to have a hard time. And I think that can be good because when we’re both down, it’s hard. It’s harder to get back up, I feel like. But I think I realized some of my past trauma that I guess I had just with like men, and I realized that I was holding some of those feelings and thoughts towards my husband. And I remember one time working with you through that and releasing some of those thoughts and feelings I had and processing that emotion and realizing that I didn’t have to feel that way, like toward my husband and it came from, I don’t know, just a place of like pure love, and that was really helpful for us in our relationship and as far as things go with my children I feel like sometimes I can be quick to get angry over little things too, I still remember telling you this, like my son had spilled some Chick-Fil-A sauce and on the floor, and I got mad about it, and I was so upset with myself that I got mad about it. And so, there’s this anger that came up and then I compounded it with beating myself up, and I remember talking to you about that, and realizing that like it was okay, to feel angry, but I didn’t have to beat myself up over that, and I could handle it differently. Like how we process emotions doesn’t mean that I have to yell at my kid. It doesn’t mean I have to show it. But that I can feel that emotion within my body and process it a different way than how I was, and then I wouldn’t even have the thought about beating myself up after that. Lara: I think that was really cool to watch you go through that when you started feeling emotions, like pure emotions without all the additional layers that you were adding on top of it. Watching you go through that; I think is where that lightness started where you were releasing so much weight that you were carrying on your shoulders because you were just not being nice to yourself. Or never handling anything. But then once you started releasing that, then it was easier to process emotions it seemed, and that you were showing up differently for your kids because you were feeling an emotion and not having to react to the emotion. Aubry: Yes, for sure. It was really helpful for that. Lara: So, tell me your thoughts about making decisions, and using the decision-making cycle and how we make decisions and following through on decisions that we make. And tell me how that process was for you because it is not a straight line because it’s your journey, but it didn’t look like a straight line in going back to school. So, tell us a little bit about how that process went for you. Aubry: Yeah. Oh, making decisions. I feel I remember as a kid, like going to at the gas station, I specifically remember this on my way to my grandma’s, like going to the gas station. I remember standing in the aisle and trying to decide what candy bar I wanted, and I could not decide. They all looked so good. And you don’t want to make the wrong choice. I don’t know what happened to that, but I do remember standing there and that’s something that I’ve always, I guess you could say, struggled with or dealt with is trusting that the decision that I was making was the right one, even if it felt uncomfortable. I’d always make pros and cons lists, and actually, here’s another example: when I was in high school, I played softball and I hated it. I only played because my other friends played and my senior year, my two friends that played softball tore their ACL during basketball season, and so they weren’t playing softball. And I had actually gotten into throwing the javelin the year before track. And I really didn’t want to play softball, especially because my friends weren’t playing. And I remember making a pros and cons list, but I knew in my heart that I did not want to play softball. I did not want to play it. And so, I made my pros and cons list and made it so that, like I would go tell my coach the next day, “hey, I’m not going to play.” And I ended up doing that and it was really hard, and I cried, and I am so glad I did that. And I guess that should have been one of my first lessons, but I really learned when working with you, Lara, that I learned that it was okay to trust myself. That I could make a decision and I remember telling you I need to make a decision between these two things. And I said, “I don’t know which one to do.” And you said, “I don’t know if you said yes, you do,” but that’s how I interpreted it. Yes … you do know what decision to make. And so, you said to sit there and feel it within myself what decision I need to make. And so, that actually happened when I decided to become a life coach. Lara helped me figure out, because I had a million other things I wanted to possibly do. But you helped me decide that I wanted to be a life coach and then I. Wanted to get certified through the Life Coach school, but I didn’t know how I was going to afford that program. And I knew there was another route where if I went and got my master’s that because I’d been a math teacher in a title one school. In a couple years, or in a year, maybe a couple years, that I would be able to get my loans forgiven up to $17,500. And that popped into my head and I’m like, “but I don’t want a master’s, like I want to be certified through the Life Coach School because I know that works.” And I remember just feeling very strongly that I needed to go the route of a Master’s, and I’m like, okay, like here comes a bunch of papers I have to write. Like not really what I want to do. But I felt very strongly that’s what I needed to do. And so, I made that decision, and I did that, and I started it and I wanted to quit. Lara: You remember that conversation very well? Aubry: Yeah. You really helped me with that one of the first few weeks. Writing papers, and that was not what I wanted to do. I remember when I realized with your help, that I didn’t have to get an A on every single paper, and that was not part of my identity. That’s not who I was as a person, it was a hundred out of a hundred on a paper like that. I could get Bs and Cs and still pass, and that was a lifesaver for me, and I got Bs. I don’t know if I got a C, might have gotten one C, but I ended up going that route and getting my master’s and I did get my loans forgiven too. Lara: How hard was that for you to be okay getting a B? Because I remember that was really tricky for you because you do excel at everything that you do, and you had to actually coach yourself around being okay with getting a B. So, tell us how it was when you had to realize that it was okay not to be a perfectionist in that way. Aubry: I really remember it. Like I remember sitting on my bed talking to you, realizing that my grade has nothing to do with my identity. That’s completely separate from who I am. I am an amazing person. I am a daughter of God. What the score is on this paper is not who I am. And I remember that being okay. And honestly, one of the biggest times that it really helped me, because I think I did pretty good for my first few classes, but then I got sick with Covid. Do you remember that? And I was in the hospital for five days, and then after 10 days of being sick, I had a pulmonary embolism and pneumonia, and my academics just went out the door, like there was no way I was going to do that. And a couple times I was able to communicate with my teacher what was going on or my professor and they were very gracious and helped me with that, but I ended up getting I think a B minus in that class, and I was like, “You know what? That’s okay. Like I am a human being and I have stuff going on and getting a B minus is okay.” I think that was really helpful and just realizing that I’m more than just my academics. Lara: And I think that’s such a good lesson for anybody listening to take away that your house and the way it looks is not your identity. A career is not your identity. The way your children behave is not your identity. And I think we get so wrapped up in making sure those areas are perfect because we feel like it is a reflection of our identity, but when we’re able to really separate those things out, then we can start to see what do we want to focus on? And for you it was spending more time with your kids than spending those extra few hours to make sure you get an A on an assignment. And so, it was really cool to watch you make those like conscious decisions on spending time with your family, versus staying up all hours of the night to get that one little bit to just, hit that home run, even though you hate softball. Is there anything else that like you can really think of that you’d want to share with other people? Aubry: I think working with a life coach literally can change your life, and I love life coaching and just as much as when I started working with Lara. The cool thing about life coaching, and especially working with Lara is I don’t know how many times I would go to somebody for advice, or I’d want somebody to validate, “Hey, I’m going to do this. What do you think?” And then they have their opinion about it, and sometimes I don’t want to hear what they have to say, and sometimes like I hear what they say, and it hurts me, and then I’m like, “Oh, maybe I’m doing the wrong thing.” Working with you, it was so nice and so relieving because you never told me what to do. You’d be really curious. You’d ask me, and the answer would always come from me. And then when I made that decision, even if I told people, it didn’t matter what they thought about it because I knew it was the right thing for me. And that was very empowering and has changed my life to the point where I don’t worry that much about what other people say, not on the level that I believed it before. I’ve realized that I can make my own decisions and know that they’re the right thing for me, regardless of what anybody says. And that’s what working with a life coach can do, and that has helped me, especially, just over the past few years, or I guess the past year since I’ve worked with you, it was nice to be able to go to someone every week and bring my problems and talk through. But even without you, I can do that myself. And it just helps me as a mom, it helps me as a wife. It helps me at my job. It helps me in my business that I’m building, it helps me when I am doing something difficult, or adversity arises in my life. It has given me power over my life. I felt like before, I just sometimes, imagined my old self crawling into a cave and hiding there because it’s comfortable. And where I could sit there and overthink and repeat these negative thoughts and think of the worst-case scenarios. And I feel like now I can walk outside of that cave, and I can go do the things I need to do and not worry about the things that are around me taking me down. Lara: I love that so much and I’m grateful that you point that out because that’s always my hope is that when I stop working with a client, that doesn’t stop their growth. And I think there are people out there, that will continually work with someone. And there are clients who choose to continue working with me. And I choose to keep a life coach for different areas of my life that I’m working on in that moment. But the tools that we spend time learning, that I’m teaching you and the things that you’re applying that is like an eternal ripple effect. Like it goes on and on forever, which then affects every area of your life. And so even though the investment seems a lot up upfront, you’re investing in your future. And what I loved about the way you were going about it was that. You wanted to be a better mother. You wanted to be a better wife. But you also wanted to invest in yourself. And that’s something that I feel really passionate about as moms and women. Sometimes we think we should do these things for our kids, but also, we’re valuable human beings and we can do them for ourselves. And as we can really love ourselves on a deeper level, and this helps with that. So that’s one thing that I really admired. So, here’s just one final question for you: how easy or hard was it working with me at times? Aubry: Oh, okay. I’m like, it was so easy. Like I love you, right? But you challenged me. I would tell you something and you to be like, “oh, but and it was just a thought, right?” And I would think my thought was a circumstance I need to be like, “Is this a thought or a circumstance?” I’m like, “it feels really real. It really feels like a circumstance,” but you’re like, “No. Look, it’s a thought.” And I’m like, “Gosh, dang it.” I looked forward to meeting with you every single week and it just was nice to know that I could go to somebody neutral and go to somebody that I knew I could trust and that you loved me and that you do love me still. You loved me then while I was working through these things, and I still remember when we started working and you told me how much it costs, I was like, “I can figure out how to get that money.” And my husband was like, “okay are you sure?” And I was like, “Yeah. I need this … I have to do this.” And I don’t know if you still offer this, but something about if I wasn’t happy with what I got, I’d get my money back. Lara: Yep, I still do that. Aubry: But I would never ever ask for a penny back because you changed my life! And it’s worth the investment to work with you and you’re a blessing in my life. Lara: And I think that’s why I love this so much because I feel like you changed my life just as much, and that I feel such an honor being able to be with you during those times. I really do feel like our coaching sessions are sacred exchanges of love and the things that we talk about are hard sometimes. And because we have that basis of love, there is so much potential there for both of us. I’m learning just as much as you and I will always remember our coaching sessions and love that we are still in touch, and I love that we still get on and talk about things because that love is always going to be there. And so, I’m glad that you feel it too. Alright, so tell everybody how they can contact you if they have some kids or they coach a sports team or something where they want to be able to access your services. Aubry: I’m on Instagram and Facebook @EliteAthleteLifeCoaching, that’s my handle. I also have you can contact me via email. It’s Aubry@eliteathletelifecoaching.com And I would assume you’ll put those somewhere in the show notes? Lara: Yeah. Aubry: And I also have a website, www.eliteathletelifecoaching.com and you can message me there as well. Lara: You do a lot of one-on-one, but you also do trainings, don’t you? Aubry: Yes. Teams. So yeah, definitely. Lara: If you have any connections to teams or your kids are on it and you want to use Aubry’s services, please reach out to her. She is very talented working with all people, especially with athletes. I definitely want her for your team. All right. Thank you. It has been an honor to be on here with you today. Aubry: Thank you so much, Lara. Thank you for listening. Please share, review, and subscribe to this podcast so that together we can live life on purpose.