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Coach Conversations with Ana A. Melikian, PhD

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Ana A. Melikian, PhD, is a life coach with more then a decade of experience in working on personal development, both one-on-one and in groups.

She is originally from Portugal, and previously to moving to Phoenix, AZ, she lived and also worked in England and Spain. 

She has a Doctoral Degree in Psychology from the University of Sunderland in the U.K. and two masters, one in psychotherapy from the University of Salamanca in Spain and the other in Ericksonian Psychotherapy and Hypnosis from the Institute Erickson Madrid, Spain. She is also a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF).

Melikian continues to go regularly to Europe where she teaches and facilitates workshops. She has coauthored several published articles and book chapters. 

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0:15 Katharine Halpin

Welcome to the Blog Talk Radio Show Coach Conversations sponsored by the Phoenix Arizona Chapter of the International Coach Federation. ICF has over 20,000 members in 108 countries and I'm your host today in my radio show, my name is Katharine Halpin and I am calling in from Phoenix, Arizona. Our guest today I'm very proud to present, Ana Melikian, calling in from Portugal today. Ana is a Ph.D. and a long-time coach and expert in both personal development in the group settings and working one-on-one. She is originally from Portugal where she is vacationing and working this summer. Prior to moving to Phoenix, she lived in England and Spain. She has a Doctoral Degree in Psychology from the University of Sunderland in the U.K. and two, not one, but two masters degrees, one in psychotherapy from a university in Spain and the other in the Ericksonian Psychotherapy and Hypnosis from the Institute Erickson in Madrid, Spain. She is also a member of the International Coach Federation and a key player here in Phoenix, in our Phoenix Chapter. Ana regularly goes to Europe where she teaches and facilitates workshops and she has co-authored several published articles and book chapters. So, Ana, thank you so much for joining me today.

1:44 Ana Melikian

I'm very glad to be here and I'm so glad that technology is by our side and things are working great.

1:52 Katharine Halpin

Yes. And before we get started with your interview, Ana, I just wanted to acknowledge you and show my personal appreciation. We've been doing this now for about four months, sponsored by the Phoenix Arizona Chapter of the ICF at Blog Talk Radio Show and we would not be where we are today without all of your effort, Ana. For our listeners, I just want them to know that Ana is the one that pulled together all of the technology, not just with blogtalkradio.com but also in the social media arena, in Facebook and Twitter. She has helped us get the word out and get our listener attendance up and has been a huge part of our success with our radio show. So, before we get started interviewing you, I just wanted to acknowledge you and to show how much I appreciate all your efforts, Ana.

2:44 Ana Melikian

Thank you so much. I really appreciate your words.

2:48 Katharine Halpin

Oh, of course, of course, I appreciate you. And before we get started with the interview, I wanted to let our listeners know about your phenomenal website because you have so many great resources there, so as they listen on the internet, they might want to also surf -- it's www.amazecoaching.com. Amaze, the word amaze, A-M-A-Z-E coaching, all spelled out, .com. It's a fabulous website, beautiful graphics and extraordinary resources that you provide complementary to people that go on to your website. So, thanks, Ana, for that and for all your generosity to the world with your great resources. So, tell us about growing up in Portugal.

3:36 Ana Melikian

Like you've said in the beginning, I'm originally from Portugal. My Portuguese maiden name is Almeida for I speak somebody from Portugal listening in and I lived here most of my life until college days. So, in a small village near Coimbra, that is university town and then I went to studying this university town Psychology and just a regular person here I always had a dream about traveling, therefore something that always was there and in college I have this wonderful opportunity. Here in Europe, we have a program called the Erasmus Programme that allow us to do one year of university studies in another country and I manage to get the grant to go to England, so I went to do one year of college in England and that was a great experience and I started to travel ever since.

4:35 Katharine Halpin

Oh, how wonderful, how wonderful. Well, tell us about your background, how you ended up going into psychotherapy and what led you to coaching from there, I want to hear all about that because you are so well-educated for someone like me who became a coach with just one college degree, my degree is an Accounting, I'm always thrilled to meet people like you who are so well-educated. So, tell us about that whole college career and early career as a professional.

5:14 Ana Melikian

Things really start -- impressing the question because it makes me think that even before I enter to college, my first degree is Psychology and that was in between at the time choosing Psychology and a technological course of software and computer. So, the computer world was always a very important and I'm very curious about, but I'm even more curious about people so I decided by Psychology and I did in Coimbra, my university bachelors in psychology and then like I said before I went to England, I was there one year I decided to stay one year more there to finish the degree there and then I was like, "Well, okay what to do now?" And there was this wonderful master program that I heard about in Spain in Salamanca of psychotherapy because I was really wanting to be a clinical psychologist. So, I decided to apply to this master program in Salamanca just try, okay I don't see anything in applying for it and I guess I was susceptive there and I was, "Oops! Now I have to go to Spain and learn Spanish."

6:30 Katharine Halpin

Oh that's great! When we think of Portugal and Spain, both of these _6:33_, but Portuguese is the language of Portugal so you have to learn Spanish, bless your heart.

6:41 Ana Melikian

Yeah, it's the same root we are, it's a Romance language and so every similar root that _6:48_ we have 800 years of history that differentiates one language from the other. But really was -- so to say, I went there 3 months previous to the degree start and I really merged in the language and in the culture and I was at -- from the pace when the course starts, so that's what's great. So, that's what the great experience but again, my background is psychology and psychotherapy that is my background. And I was in love with the clinical work in seeing how we help people, they are trying very tricky situations to really start to have a life and then I have to tell that I am great teacher. My teachers, my mentors where really my inspiration mainly two of them when -- there are locals also but two that really where I worked more closely and I can consider them my mentors. The one in England was Peter Hawkins and one in Salamanca, Pepe Navarro that I was very lucky to have the privilege to work so many years with them because whilst doing this course is an after work, so I kept to contact them, supervision with them and therefore a golden opportunity of learning.

8:12 Katharine Halpin

Great, great, great. Yes, _8:15_.

8:18 Ana Melikian

So I did my master in Spain, in Salamanca and then I stay there working for a couple of years in the master program. They invited me to teach there, so I stayed there and meanwhile I started to do my PhD as a distant student from England. So, I was doing the clinical work in Spain, but going to England frequently to do part of the courses and all these were at our complements of the PhD, so it was interesting time and after -- or in the middle of this, I receive a job offer to work in Portugal, in a private university in Portugal.

9:01 Katharine Halpin

Oh, how exciting.

9:02 Ana Melikian

So, I said "Yes."

9:04 Katharine Halpin


9:05 Ana Melikian

I said, "Yes, I love it" because I love the teaching school, so I went to the North of Portugal near Oporto and I teach there from 2000 to 2003 and I started to have my clinical clients. I was teaching and at the same time two afternoons, I have my private practice and I was really enjoying everything of my career and my career are blossoming, and in that story I was also traveling to conferences and congresses to present the work papers and workshops and in one of these trips was to the United States, it was in 2001. This trip to Phoenix Arizona, the conference was sponsored by the Milton Erickson Foundation in Phoenix and it will be in the Hyatt Hotel downtown Phoenix and I was staying in this lovely hotel in San Carlos that is just next door to the Hyatt there, and I met my SO. I met a person there that now is my husband.

10:17 Katharine Halpin

So tell us about that, was he in the conference too?

10:21 Ana Melikian

No, no. He was in the hotel of the San Carlos and he saw me and he say hello to me and it was a very short conversation and in the next day he spoke with the person that he saw me speaking with -- that was my teacher and the supervisor at that time that Dr. Peter Hawkins -- and they changed emails and he forward the email to Peter and asking to forward the email to me.

10:57 Katharine Halpin

I love the story.

10:59 Ana Melikian

So, so.

11:01 Katharine Halpin

I love it.

11:01 Ana Melikian

So I received this email from an -- and that was very funny because my teacher is a very proper Englishman asked me, "Okay, I receive this email of a person in the hotel where we stay in the United States at the conference. He is very impressed with you. Do you want to give me to forward his email?" And I told him, "I don't have admirers everyday, please! I want a proof of it, so forward the email to me."

11:29 Katharine Halpin

Of course, of course, of course.

11:34 Ana Melikian

I remember the time replying the email saying, "Okay, this is a little bit awkward and strange for me, but thank you for your email, it was very nice." And we started like communicating by email then chatting online then telephone.

11:48 Katharine Halpin

Oh my God.

11:51 Ana Melikian

And now, we are married that it's going to be 8 years after the summer in October with our lovely daughter.

11:58 Katharine Halpin

Congratulations. What a great story. Well, I knew that you had relocated to Phoenix because of your husband, but I had not heard the story but more so to that is a great story, the San Carlos Hotel.

12:15 Ana Melikian

Yup! Yes, that is always in my heart -- that place.

12:19 Katharine Halpin

Yes, of course, of course. Well, given that you are so committed to clinical psychology and psychotherapy, and all your studies and your work, speaking and writing and of course getting further education. What was the pivotal experiences, Ana, that led you from that in the coaching?

12:40 Ana Melikian

Coaching, because when I moved to the United States, I was still in the final part of my PhD, I was writing at the thesis, so I've finished the writing about the thesis. So, after I got married, that my focus and energy was to finish the thesis and after I had the PhD in my hands, I was "Okay, now I have the PhD, so I'm going to try to get the license to be a clinical psychologist." And then I started to understand that the system in the United States was much more, I knew that was decent, I knew that I have to do many other things, but I was "Whoa! My gosh, what?" and really up to press the pause button at the time and ask myself, "What really do you want to do? Do you really want? Is this your path or what you want to do with your life? What's really your life transition?" And I become coaching, in the personal level, helping me define really what I wanted.

13:47 Katharine Halpin


13:47 Ana Melikian

And then I was like...if coaching was so much -- the life coaching is so much in common with all one of the areas that I always explore during my training in psychotherapy -- that was personal development because for years and years I worked in personal development for myself and in the training with other people too that I was -- gosh this -- I read in the other day, one thing that I think is a perfect thing in psychology to illustrate this. If we imagine a scale from minus 10 to plus 10, in a clinical psychology we are trained very well to work for people that are tieing the minus and the negative scale to go and help people with mental illness to reach 0, but we don't have much training in taking people from 0 to 10, of course.

14:46 Katharine Halpin

Oh, I love this diagram. This is so easy to understand.

14:54 Ana Melikian

And if that was what coaching is about, it's people deciding the positive ratio, the positive part of the scale as they don't have a mental illness, they are okay, they have a function most of the time even a nice life, but by other people standards, that they know that there is something missing there and they really want to be more better. They really want to rise to the full potential. They can rise and coaching is a great -- it's I think the best tool for that.

15:26 Katharine Halpin


15:26 Ana Melikian

And I realize that to myself. "Oh gosh! I will love." This has been so good, personally, for me. I can be this person helping.

15:37 Katharine Halpin


15:39 Ana Melikian

So, I started to look around about how to do some trainings and I read the book at the time -- you must read -- Pat Williams' book, "The Therapist as a Life Coach?"

15:52 Katharine Halpin

No. I'm not aware with that. It sounds fabulous.

15:56 Ana Melikian

Yeah. Pat Williams. He was also a psychologist in United States.

16:01 Katharine Halpin

Oh! Pat Williams, of course -- yeah! I know Pat Williams. Yes. And I know a number of people that have worked with him. Yes. I forgot! Yes. Yes. It's coming back to me now.

16:09 Ana Melikian

And, yeah. And yes, his book called Therapist as a Life Coach. That is really aimed for people like me that were psychotherapist...

16:19 Katharine Halpin


16:19 Ana Melikian

Clinical psychologist and I'm thinking about -- Ok! What can we also do in our professional life and it fits like a glove definitely to me. So, then I saw that they have The Institute of Life Coaching Training. I like the program there and I started to do the training there to become a coach.

16:41 Katharine Halpin

Oh, I love the story. Well, in that Patrick Williams' training program to the Institute of Life Coaching, isn't it?

16:50 Ana Melikian

Exactly. The ILCT.

16:51 Katharine Halpin

Yeah. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. So, that's how you got plugged-in to the International Coach Federation, I would imagine.

16:59 Ana Melikian

Of course. Because, I was looking for something back and some recognition cause they have been...

17:04 Katharine Halpin


17:04 Ana Melikian

So many coaching things online, it's crazy.

17:08 Katharine Halpin


17:09 Ana Melikian

You can get the certification in a weekend.

17:13 Katharine Halpin

Right. Right. Right. Right. But with all your -- I was gonna say with all your credentials, that would be important to someone like you to be in a credential program -- Coach Training Program and then it's -- member of the ICF. You would value that.

17:30 Katharine Halpin

Professional level of professionalism that you are using too.

17:30 Ana Melikian


17:34 Ana Melikian

Yeah. And with the ICF people -- in Europe, coaching is very popular and some I spoke with some colleagues that are already doing coaching here and they spoke to me about the ICFs. So, I started to look in their web and webpage and I saw that the ILCT, the institute of life coaching training was approved with training from the ICF, so I said, "Perfect!" So, I'm doing it.

17:58 Katharine Halpin

Isn't this great? This is great. That was great. Well, what would you say is your philosophy of coaching, Ana?

18:11 Ana Melikian

That is a very interesting question. Because of course the school where we train always give us a birthmark in terms of the way they pre-coach, that the wonderful thing about coaching is that they are so many influences that we can absorb and make our own. And another big gain for me is I never did formal training with them, but the book -- Coactive Coaching of the Coaches Training Institute, I think is a great book for the beginning coaching and for even -- and also beginner coach because it's a great thing to just -- and I love what they say about their cornerstones that and in some way I think it's a great summary of my philosophy of coaching that the client is naturally creative, resourceful and whole.

19:06 Katharine Halpin


19:07 Ana Melikian

So, we are working with the person with all the resources and all the creativity that the person is there. The coaching -- the rest is the client whole life. We came out even if we are working like a professional. What if the person wants to be professional or changing profession, we cannot -- we always have to look in whole and I love the will of life that allow us to have the different areas of the people's life and try to see things in this holistic. I think is really one of the secrets why coaching works so well and then the other things about the coaches dances in the moment with the client, the flexibility that -- and the creativity that the coach have to have when we are working and also that we have always remember ourselves that the agenda comes from the client. We can never teach wonderful students and the full process is that is -- the client that is driving the car. We are co-pilots at the most.

20:09 Katharine Halpin

Yes. Oh I love that. A wonderful reminder for me today. Well, we are simply the co-pilots and it's always the client's agenda. Well, you certainly -- I believe my philosophy in life is that we are all magnets and we are all attracting great people, great opportunities, great ideas or we're not and the more in alignment we are with our own values and on the right path and the great opportunities will just simply show up. So, you certainly were on the right path _20:43_ on Patrick Williams and his institute and he found coactive coaching and their resources that you ever were plugged in and I would imagine your coach that you had that coach used through the process with a pretty impactful person.

20:57 Ana Melikian

All of this helps and I'm still ought to say that process. I think one of the things about -- we really _21:04_. And that I'm constantly trying to see what, in terms of my own personal development. What can I do for improving myself?

21:17 Katharine Halpin


21:17 Ana Melikian

And so, that is something that I think is a challenge that a good challenge that we have as a coach. We have to be in this continuous process of personal development too.

21:31 Katharine Halpin

Yes. Now say more about that in addition to the continuous process of personal development. What are the other ways that you walk-your-talk as a coach?

21:45 Ana Melikian

I really -- it's a question that I love to do to other people and now I think on me. So, in some -- how I walk my talk, for instance I did some mental coaching with one of my teachers in the Institute of Life Coaching Training leaves a trademark and she's great. I did a nice program of Personal Development that we -- she is a business coach and not took from ICF. There are _22:24_ and she had a very nice program of Personal Development that really was very powerful for me. And self reading, I really tried to point this too. The last book that I finished reading was book of Naomi's Barbara Fredrickson, if I'm not misspelling the name -- "The Positivity" is the name of the book. And I would say "Oh my gosh!" My list of own work from that book is amazing because she gives this -- the book is great. Great ideas and lots of tools for us also to apply what she's speaking in our personal life. How can we increase our positivity? How can we allow ourselves flourishing more and these things that we speak about, what is the positivity ratio between -- we cannot eliminate totally the negative things in our life but we can adapt in check and increase the positivity. And they speak about this 3:1 ratio like -- it's like the melting point of the point that ice become water like the tipping point and in personal flourishing this is the tipping point when the positivity starts to increase three times when in relation to the negativity, things started flourishing and bloom.

23:55 Katharine Halpin

Wow. That's amazing

23:59 Ana Melikian

And we -- yeah. So, yes and she gives lots of research that support this and my academic side loves that kind of things.

24:10 Katharine Halpin

Of course. Of course. Of course. Of course. Well now tell us more -- one of the things that I -- when I first got to know you, you were speaking at our local ICF chapter and you did a thing on breathing and I've been experimenting with breathing, different practices on and off for 30 years, but you taught me something that no one had ever taught me before about the importance of breathing out first. So, tell us about how you got in to that -- did you bring that experience over from your therapeutic experiences or....?

24:48 Ana Melikian

Yes. One of my training since psychotherapy was hypnosis. The reason that I came to Phoenix the first time in 1998 if I'm not mistaken, I came to Phoenix because there is the Milton Erickson Foundation in Phoenix that they have -- this wonderful intensive training is usually in the summer and also they run in the winter. And then this Milton Erickson, he was in the have a -- he also has a master in psychology and he was incredible in use of hypnosis for psychotherapy and for pain and other problem. And I have studied about him and when I found his foundation, I came to the United States to do training with them and he influenced me and his schools in psychotherapy and even he is one of the influencers you know the school in Canada that they are based in Canada -- The Erickson College International also part that they are recognized about the fine institution by the ICF. They follow the principles of Milton Erickson. Not so much the question of hypnosis, but the principle that because this -- he was -- he always -- this idea that the person has the resources that their conscience is a source of resources of the potential that give out the person. His positive vision of _26:28_ conscience. He was one of the first in psychology to speak about that. So, I'm very influenced by this approach. And in hypnosis, one of the things that we have to work -- when we do the inductions of the classical hypnosis and even in the naturalist become more open approach of hypnosis. We work with -- a little bit with the breathing and for relaxation and all that.

26:55 Katharine Halpin

True. That makes a lot of sense.

26:58 Ana Melikian

So that was my first entry point to the breathing. Then personally, I started to do yoga and yoga household works a lot for the breath. And then some years ago, I have a jaw operation so they have to break my jaw for orthodontic work. And the postoperatory period was very painful and I could not concentrate enough to do self-hypnosis, but just focus on my breath helped me. So, I didn't have to take any help from Tylenol to go by the postoperatory time. And this was really helped me. I was wow, there is something here. So, I tried to research this about, and we have some information about that.

27:55 Katharine Halpin

I was not aware of that, but it makes perfect sense, but I was not aware that you could use it even for pain management.

28:02 Ana Melikian


28:03 Katharine Halpin


28:03 Ana Melikian

It takes all. Breathing is like it's the when-or-when on many techniques if you look in meditation. Many times, they focus on the breathing.

28:14 Katharine Halpin


28:16 Ana Melikian

Focusing the breath in and breath out. So that is like many techniques, many practice at the breathing is there. There are a couple of a small group of people that -- okay, take the breathing and let's work and see what it take us. That is really part of everyone's life and of many practice that I commonly use and that was I realized to breathing and then I bought many books, many CDs and one of the CDs that I think really use -- a CD that I recommend for everybody is one of Dr Andrew Weil from Tucson, Arizona.

29:04 Katharine Halpin

Yes. Yes. Dr Weil.

29:08 Ana Melikian

Yeah. He has the CD called breathing. This two is a double CD, one where he explains the importance of breath work and then another one just with exercises or breathing exercises. And he was one of the people that emphasized that the importance of breathing out first. And that like you know I like to compare life because people, when people feel a little bit anxious, they have a very shallow breathing in the top of the lungs we called the _29:42_ is a very shallow breathing and really people say "Okay. You have to breathe deeply so inhale deeply." And person say, "Oh! But I can't, it's like if I have a net in my toe that I cannot _29:53_, it's like it stops me." And that is really true because if the lungs are full of residual air and we are just breathing in the top, we really cannot do a deep inhalation.

30:05 Katharine Halpin


30:05 Ana Melikian

So the first thing you have to do is exhale as much as we can, and it's like the idea of emptying our _30:14_ first and then you kind of _30:16_ with fresh air.

30:20 Katharine Halpin


30:20 Ana Melikian

So this is like a small secret, a small detail that makes all the difference.

30:27 Katharine Halpin

It makes all the difference in the world trust me, trust me. I've done it both ways and it makes a huge difference that I've shared with you before I was in a conference in Acapulco and I went to an early morning session on the beach where we did meditation and I ended up hyperventilating and was in a state of anxiety all day from hyperventilating. It was so not appropriate and not pretty and it's simply because he taught how to do a certain breathing thing, but he never mention that we should breathe out first. So, like you're describing, I breathe in when my lungs were already filled with air, it's like I've too much oxygen to the brain I think. Well, I'm very interested in opening up the lines to callers because I know there are people that are listening, that are interested in asking specific questions about your coaching, and especially the breathing, and the relaxation work that you've done. So, let me just announce that -- and yes if you like to call-in, the number is 424 243 9638 that number is 424 243 9638 and we would love for you to call-in and asked Ana any questions at all that you have about your breathing practices or meditation practices, or relaxation practices or just any coaching questions in general. We're gonna continue on with our agenda. I'm anxious to hear Ana about some of your coaching successes.

32:04 Katharine Halpin

I know a big piece of our coaching -- a code of ethics is to maintain confidentially, but maybe without mentioning names or locations you could share some of your coaching successes with us.

32:04 Ana Melikian

Me too.

32:19 Ana Melikian

In general, I can say that many of my clients -- many of -- most of my clients are woman. It's not because I like to work with men too, but it happens that most of my clients, most of 75% of my followers in Facebook because we can see -- in the front page -- we can see the percentage of 75% are woman. And one of the things that is more common in my clients is that expression, I feel like I'm spinning my wheels.

32:57 Katharine Halpin


32:57 Ana Melikian

Or other people will tell I'm -- that was an expression that I was not familiar with, "I'm paddling without the chain." So, if that same idea, that is like you are in a treadmill spending energy, but you feel that you are not going where you want to go.

33:16 Katharine Halpin


33:16 Ana Melikian

And sometimes most of the times you cannot speak like -- you know that you are not where you want to go, but you cannot just do quite very well where you want to go either.

33:27 Katharine Halpin


33:28 Ana Melikian

And this is the typical clients that I help and the -- and the stands -- is the great thing about working with people in this situation is that very quickly they get coaching that -- they get that sense of empowerment and clarity. They start to __33:49__ more clear and a -- just clarity of knowing what they want of manage towards people like what they want that really gives them the power for saying, "Okay, I can do this."

34:03 Katharine Halpin

How wonderful. What a gift to give them.

34:07 Ana Melikian

And it's like -- obviously you are -- in many ways you are like the sounding board. You are such that -- in some way reflecting the -- seeing sometimes what is in themselves that they are -- they cannot see at the moment.

34:24 Katharine Halpin

Right, right.

34:25 Ana Melikian

And you are helping them to look inside. And then all the tool -- yeah -- and then all the tools that we ever know, the strategies that we have to, "Okay, now you know where you are, you know where you want to go, so we have to coach for the gaps to go from here to there."

34:44 Katharine Halpin

To there.

34:45 Ana Melikian

And we have lots of great tools to help them in receiving that process.

34:50 Katharine Halpin

That's so great. And I want to hear more about those tools, but first I like to take a caller. We have a caller that's holding -- caller from line 1129 we're gonna to let you go live and ask Ana whatever questions you have for her today. So, thanks for holding. Let's see.

35:12 Ana Melikian

And when there to suppose -- I'm trying to mute -- okay.

35:18 Katharine Halpin

You got it.

35:20 Ana Melikian

I think, yes.

35:23 Katharine Halpin

Great, caller?

35:26 Katharine Halpin

Hi, welcome.

35:26 Debra Exner

Hi, Katharine!

35:26 Debra Exner

This is Debbie Exner. Hi, Katharine! Hi, Ana!

35:29 Katharine Halpin


35:30 Ana Melikian


35:32 Katharine Halpin

Thank you so much for calling again and joining us today.

35:36 Debra Exner

You're welcome.

35:38 Katharine Halpin

One of our former guests on Coach Conversations. Debra Exner, the famous coach from Phoenix, Arizona, former President of Phoenix Chapter of the ICF. What's your question for Ana today?

35:51 Debra Exner

So Ana, if someone wanted to find a coach, someone who's out there listening, what steps would you recommend that they try or take?

36:00 Ana Melikian

To find a coach -- another very good question -- the first thing that I recommended is that they go to a place like the ICS and you know I'm speaking because I -- there are great coach that are not in ICF but if going by the ICF training of the International Coach Federation approved training, I think is at least the warranty that the person has the capacity, the good training in coaching and not just somebody that open the door or open a webpage and put there, "I am a coach."

36:44 Katharine Halpin


36:46 Ana Melikian

Another thing is ask people -- ask other people and if you know somebody that has gone by coaching and they have great results, ask them "Who was your coach? Who helped you to see them?" And really -- I think if there any some ways they have to fix the approach, like if you are going to buy a car there is personal preferences, all the styles, what color and you have to shop around and when you find something that you feel comfortable with and although you've been in test driver and then okay, then even leaves the -- and that you always can buy and then sell the car later -- but you have to try possibly and shop around a little and to find the right match for yourself.

37:40 Debra Exner

Great suggestions, Ana Melikian.

37:42 Katharine Halpin

Yes. Excellent input, excellent input.

37:48 Ana Melikian

But there -- it's actually with the comparison with the cars, like when you buy a car most people will go to check consumer report to see what the consumer report says about the car that you are thinking about buying. I think the ICF, International Coach Federation can work a little bit in that same point, it can be like a warranty that say, "Okay, this passed the minimal test at this levels."

38:18 Debra Exner

Yes, but _38:18_ professional credentials or training from ICF certified training program, I totally agree, totally agree.

38:32 Katharine Halpin

Well, thanks Ana for that great response. Deb, anything else you like to know about Ana Melikian this point or any questions about approaching her -- the breathing work she has done.

38:45 Debra Exner

Oh, I have one other question and Ana it sounds like you are in a very good at finding methods that you can use that help you to ground yourself and I know -- I think it's one of the most important things that we can do to help get us through the rough passages in life. I'm wondering the -- what ways do you use to help your clients cultivate a centering routine so that they can manage stress?

39:12 Ana Melikian

To manage stress. I really -- I try to give them many tools and then almost presenting many alternatives and let them pick the ones that they feel that is the best fit for them. First of all, I buy -- working with them, I know "Okay, this person probably this and this will work best" so I give them -- but I like to offer them some options and one of the things for instance that I do in most of -- with my coaching clients on the phone or even in person is starting with the breathing exercise. So, I introduce the breathing, it's one of the things that -- it's like for me and in the phone, I think is really important. It's like a way to say, "Okay, now we are entering your space of coaching" and this is like a re-flow to make that entry. So, the person probably was running until that moment that picks the phone and phone it, and it's a way to say "Okay, there is a break point here, this is your time let's use it as fully as we can and these breathing exercises are going to help us _40:30_." And this breathing exercise, I do believe with the type that both of us can be listening to the same tape and do 1 minute-and-a-half breathing exercise and then I give that all due to them" and they can use that exercise whenever they feel that can help them. So, that is an example of a tool and that can help them with the stress management.

41:00 Debra Exner

Okay, great. Thanks, Ana.

41:03 Katharine Halpin

Yes, yes. This is outstanding because I don't know about you two, but I can get stressed 150 times an hour. It is my nature kind of a type A personality recovering workaholic, just some bad history and once I learn the breathing from Dr. Andrew Weil, I started doing that 3 or 4 times at a time before the deep breath of his 4-7-8 breathing and I try to do that at least 3 or 4 times a day.

41:35 Debra Exner


41:36 Ana Melikian

It's so great -- that special technique I think is one of the more powerful and quick ways of relax. I really -- it's one of my favorite breathing technique is 4-7-8 it is called, yet these people who come the way ever Google 4-7-8 breathing, probably they will get Dr. Weil it's -- he has an article where he explains his technique and in the CD that I spoke about it's one of the techniques of that CD.

42:11 Katharine Halpin

Great, great.

42:17 Ana Melikian

Oh, Katharine when you are speaking I was -- it definitely reminds me of something about that I read some time ago about motivation that people seeing that with motivation, with relaxation, with many other things, you have to achieved that and use that. And I think the best approach is that we have to see these things relaxation, motivation and I was like taking a shower. We get dirty all the time and once in a while, once a day at least, we have to take a shower to get cleaned. We get lots of negative things, lots of things going on in our lives, lots of stress, anxiety and we have to have our _42:59_ to clean ourselves, to bring ourselves to press the power button and the breathing technique is a great way of doing it.

43:09 Katharine Halpin

I love that. That's so great. And now let's see, we take a shower everyday, we needed to do our breathing everyday.

43:17 Ana Melikian

And another tool that I have to think that before introducing you to it because it's being really very powerful for me now a days, it's the mPWR10.

43:29 Katharine Halpin


43:31 Ana Melikian

It is really a great self-coaching tool something that we can give to our clients doing coaching and they can follow with it after working with us that everyday it takes 5 to 10 minutes and really give us -- I'm doing that everyday in the morning and really when I don't do it, my day is not as clear than when I do it.

43:56 Katharine Halpin

Wow, that's a wonderful testimonial. It makes a big difference in your day it sounds like -- so, Deb, you want to take a minute since you are on the call with us and tell a little bit about the mPWR10, I think everybody would be -- and having a good day everyday.

44:13 Debra Exner

Sure, sure. It's a tool that's based on positive and key performance psychology created by a couple of woman out in Pennsylvania, Nancy Donahue and Michelle Chung and it allows you to focus for 10 minutes each day on 6 habits and the habit puts you into a positive frame of mind, kind of like that shower that Ana was talking about, and from that place you consider your two most important goals and what things you have to celebrate about those goals and what are your next step. So, it's a very powerful place to be looking from to get momentum around accomplishing your goals and quite effective.

44:59 Katharine Halpin

Yes, yes. It sounds like -- the exposure I've had is fascinating, so I'm so glad I had to hear Ana these personal testimonial. Well, Deb, thank you so much for joining us today, you're welcome to stay and listen to the rest of Ana's interview and plug in accordingly when you have a comment we welcome that if you'd like to hang on the line with us. I'm interested, Ana, in hearing more about your ideal client. I heard that it was with females and that was with women that were stressed. If there are listeners out there that love what you have to say and love hearing your story and love the idea of the relaxation of breathing. How would they know if they are eligible to work with you?

45:51 Ana Melikian

The best way is they go to my webpage. They can get this feeling about the way I work and so the amazecoaching.com. I can increase my -- because in patient card in many ways and I have some free steps there and people if they subscribe to my -- I call them my insiders, amazing insiders group, but because I see them like an easy in every week. We've got a short speech, something that can be useful for everybody's personal development, and once in a while I blog some things and that's why they can start to know me and the way I work. And also my Facebook page, that is facebook.com/AMAZEcoaching.

46:42 Katharine Halpin


46:43 Ana Melikian

And they always can contact me directly and -- but first of all, the person to have more like a -- I love working with people that have a capacity of self-awareness. The kind of people that likes to read self-help books that it feels there are something there that is missing, that they need a person to bounce ideas. I work very well with -- I'm a visual person, I always keep visual metaphors so I work very well with visual persons. And also, I work very well with people that they are self-aware, they really are motivated about personal development, but many times they get paralyzed by over knowledge, over analysis paralysis.

47:32 Katharine Halpin


47:33 Ana Melikian

You are that kind of person -- is usually -- my best case _47:40_ are these types of people.

47:43 Katharine Halpin

I love that. Of course, Deb and I are not like that, but we know lots of people that are just like that. So, it's tons of potential clients out there that could benefit from your services, Ana. That's great, a wonderful description. Well, we just have few more minutes, but I'd like to know more about your involvement with the International Coach Federation, I know that you came in through Patrick Williams' Institute of Life Coaching, but tell us why you stay involved today and why you contribute at a degree that you contributed -- because you contributed a pretty high degree, as a speaker and as a resource for this project?

48:20 Ana Melikian

Honestly, it's being -- I would say I just have to go at one of my teachers in The Institute of Life Coaching training that I spoke before, Lisa Kramer. She belongs to the chapter in Philadelphia and she said that's being really a transformative experience in our coaching career. So, that made me, "Okay, let's see the chapter in Phoenix, there is a chapter, great or when they meet" and I start to go to the meetings. The group is great and cool. Everybody is wonderful and it's always a learning -- once a month is a learning, afternoon that we have there and even now, I start to go to the saloon theater that there are things different every month at night. I fall in love with the group. It's really learning a lot, meeting great people with lots of diversity, lots of backgrounds, is one of the things that I enjoyed of coach conversations is that has allowed me to know the background of many of these people that I knew. And I was, "Wow!" I didn't know -- this thing about this person, it's great to know this.

49:36 Katharine Halpin


49:38 Ana Melikian

So, it's really and being involved in the Blog Talk Radio, this show program and also in the website is a way -- one of my skills is that technical things. So, it's my way of saying thank you to the chapter and trying to give my contribution to the chapter, for all of the things that the Phoenix Chapter has given me.

50:03 Katharine Halpin

Oh, well. On behalf of the Phoenix Chapter, Ana, I would like to thank you because you've contributed in an extraordinary ways. As I said at the beginning of this radio show, we would not be where we are with our radio show if it weren't for you. We are so grateful for all the work that you do every month to get us prepared and to get the word out there. We have just a few more minutes left, is there are any callers, listeners that would like to call-in, our number is 424 243 9638. We would welcome your call and your question for Ana. Ana, let's just stay with the ICF a little bit longer. What benefit would you see for someone who is thinking about becoming a coach? What could the ICF provide to that individual? Like one of your colleagues that maybe is coming from a therapeutic background or someone that has an interest in being a coach but doesn't know a lot. Talk about what the ICF like that it would have provided?

51:09 Ana Melikian

I think experience, resources is really, I would say, if you are going to invest in coaching training, invest in the coaching training approved by the International Coach Federation makes all the sense they are so -- and inside there are diversity. You are not stuck in a -- it's not the cooking mode that everybody's power. There are rules and regulation and standards that the schools and the creativity and the space could present you from ways of doing the coaching. So, you really can't find the right fit for you, look around that really I think -- and after the person starts to do the training, if there is a chapter in their geographical area get to start network and to be in that chapter because we are going to meet people that are starting like you and the people that they have lots of experience, and you are going to learn a lot.

52:16 Katharine Halpin

Very well stated, very well stated. Excellent, excellent points. Well thanks, Ana. Well, just enclosing of our radio show today, Ana, would you like to say anything in summary to describe yourself with your coaching business?

52:36 Ana Melikian

In summary, I just say it's being really a pleasure to have this opportunity of being in this show and speaking with you and everybody that is listening. I'm really enjoying what I'm doing, I'm enjoying this experience.

52:57 Katharine Halpin

Thank you, thank you. I see. We have one more caller someone from the Phoenix area, number 3867. So, we have time to take one more quick caller. So, you're live.

53:09 Marnee Weber

Hi! This is Marnee Weber, the Caregiving Coach, also a member of the ICF chapter. Hi, Ana!

53:16 Ana Melikian


53:17 Katharine Halpin

Hello, Marnee! Thank you so much for calling in.

53:21 Marnee Weber

Hi, Katharine!

53:22 Katharine Halpin


53:24 Marnee Weber

So, it's good to hear your voices. I admit I've been kind of back and forth listening to your interesting interview, but there was this burning question I had throughout and I wanted to catch it and see, I hope that this isn't redundant -- that I was curious about the culture what you think bringing from your experiences over in Europe and what you find is a real value that you bring from a different culture, a different set of ways of thinking about, maybe different ways of coaching is taught about and how you coach clients and what you bring over here to us at the chapter is that of questions that's been addressed perhaps or?

54:08 Katharine Halpin

No, it's an excellent question, excellent.

54:13 Ana Melikian

And it really -- obviously it's a very interesting question. I'm being originally from Europe influences -- I don't know if I have a quick answer for that one, but I think one thing of my Portuguese culture, one of the good things about the Portugal is that we have this spirit of trying to know new cultures, trying to meet new people that once took us in the discovery 500 years ago all over the world. And I think my grandfather was a fisherman and I carry a part of that in me, I really, I'm very curious about, the culture is very open about the learning. And so, something of my Portuguese culture that I bring to my coaching and to my life, and I think can be a great thing here, but there are other people, many people that have that, but that is something that is very precious for me.

55:19 Katharine Halpin

Yeah. Beautifully stated.

55:22 Marnee Weber

Yeah, thank you for that.

55:24 Katharine Halpin

Yes. And thank you Marnee for joining us. Anything else you like to share or comment on or ask?

55:32 Marnee Weber

Well, maybe further from that do you see -- is there anything that you can share with us about, the way coaching is perceived over there and learning best practices or things that you think are valuable for us to either know about that's going on or that it somehow serves us here?

55:55 Ana Melikian

I know much better the coaching in United States, the coaching world in United States than Europe, but what I'm realizing they are very influenced out, so by the International Coach Federation and from the same principles. So, that is common. Of course that each country will have there -- if they are already at school there that is working for long, that will be the stronger one and I cannot say the specific case, most of people that I met here are eager for more training. They look to the United States and Canada for the big names and they also have good names and very important names in Europe. It's a world community out there -- I think with the International Coach Federation that is something that the principles are the same. Then there are a simple important differences to -- is for instance, the supervision in Europe it seem differently than the mentoring in North America, and that can be a very important difference for the future of the International Coach Federation, but it's difficult to explain in a so short time.

57:19 Katharine Halpin

That's very useful. Excellent!

57:21 Marnee Weber


57:23 Katharine Halpin


57:23 Marnee Weber

Thank you.

57:24 Katharine Halpin

I'm waiting for your good question, but I have an important question I should have asked early on, Ana. What time is it in Portugal right now? _57:33_ your dinner time about 11 o'clock at night?

57:36 Ana Melikian

It's 11 o'clock, almost 3 to 11.

57:40 Katharine Halpin

3 minutes before 11 o'clock and isn't that about when you all eat dinner?

57:44 Ana Melikian

That is in Spain. In Spain, that will be totally right, but in Portugal we have it a little bit early, by 8 o'clock we have our dinner here.

57:51 Katharine Halpin

Okay, okay. Well, we even more appreciate you being our guest today, Ana, because you did have to call in at 10 o'clock at night and I'm sure you've been leading your seminars and workshops since facilitating a teaching over there all day. So, we know that this has been a long day for you. We are so grateful and we're so grateful to have our callers Marnee Green and Deb Exner thank you. And, before we wrap up, let me just let you know about our next two months shows, we'll be together again on August 26 at 2 p.m. Pacific. Our guest will be Molly O'Neill who is the incoming President of the Phoenix chapter of the International Coach Federation. So, we'll now, we get to hear about Molly's coaching philosophy and her experience, but we'll get to learn more about the local chapter activities over the next year and then on September 23rd, I am pleased to announce that our guest will be me, Katharine Halpin. And I'll be interviewed by Tamara Stark, board member of the local chapter of ICF. So, join us at 2 p.m., Pacific on the 23rd of September and on August 26, both Fridays. We very much appreciate you all calling in and listening and helping us spread the word about Coach Conversations. We are proud with Blog Talk Radio show and we so appreciate our listeners. So, thank you all so much and we look forward to being with you again in about one month. Thanks so much!