R a v e n S e r i t a
Hello Raven! What inspired you to become a relationship coach?
Hey! I believe the biggest inspiration I had to become a relationship coach was the epiphany that life is all about relationships, whether that is nurturing and building authentic relationship with God, yourself, or others. The health and success of the relationship you have with God (if you’re a Believer), or yourself, affects the health of every other relationship, and every other area of your life. I love helping people navigate the muddy, complicated waters that often accompany relationships, and helping them get comfortable with challenging their thinking.
"The health and success of the relationship you have with God (if you’re a Believer), or yourself, affects the health of every other relationship, and every other area of your life".
Can you explain what a relationship coach does and offers to help people?
Sure–a relationship coach helps you identify issues, limiting beliefs, goals, strategies, and tracking mechanisms to help you see and accomplish active, positive change within your relationships. We put you (the client) in the driver's seat, help you navigate your thoughts, emotions, and goals, and provide the structure to do so safely and efficiently. It becomes a more personal relationship, as I use not only my Masters in Psychology (with an emphasis in Clinical Mental Health Counseling), but also incorporating my own experiences, wisdom, and the lessons I have learned along the way. I help with improving one’s self esteem, how you might speak to yourself and others, addressing issues, and coming up with goals and action plans for accomplishing things a client might want in a relationship. Also, I find myself being a listening ear, or a neutral third party, to help mediate and deepen expression between a client and themselves or whoever they are in a relationship with.
What kind of services do you offer?
Currently, I offer 4 virtual services: Free consultation for those who aren’t sure where to start and need a little help. I have 30-minute check-ins for those who need a little help getting started on their healing journey, want to test it out, or maybe just want to do a quick mental health check-in. Also, I have normal, 1-hr sessions for those who have specific things they’d like to discuss and are interested in working together on a plan of action that best suits them.
Lastly, I have 1.5-hour sessions for those who need a little more time than the 1-hr session. Although some individuals really need that extra 30 minutes to get to a good stopping point, these sessions are typically taken by couples or groups, like friends or mothers and daughters. Currently, I am creating 12-week packages for the 3 most important relationships in a person’s life, digital workbooks, and ebooks, so stay tuned for that!
How did you handle your most challenging relationship?
I left. Sometimes you just need a step back to see everything clearly. Most times we are too close to the situation, person, or decision to make the best, most accurate move. Time away from the situation is crucial. Time to think yourself through the situation. Time to feel your intense emotions. Time to sort out what you want and if this person is actually helping you in any way. Time to recategorize where people fit in your life, and sometimes it’s something as simple as something my grandmother said, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder". Time is of the essence. If they are meant to be in your life and you in theirs–they’ll be there.
"Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Time is of the essence. If they are meant to be in your life and you in theirs–they’ll be there".
Are there any challenges you've had to overcome as a coach?
Imposter Syndrome has been tough for me. I started getting more clients when I was going through some relational issues of my own. I asked, “Am I qualified enough to really give these people advice and help when I am in the mess I’m in?” I didn’t feel called, or qualified, or set apart. As a matter of fact, I felt the opposite–like I didn’t belong. However, that still small voice on the inside of me reminded me ever so gently, that these trials are only going to make you better, that everything is being worked together for my good, you will forever be learning, and I have to go through things to be able to give my absolute best to my clients.
How important is your Spirituality with your coaching journey?
For me, it is of the utmost importance. My spirituality connects me to the Holy Spirit, and he’ll tell me sometimes, “This isn’t your client, move on". Sometimes, I’ll know off the rip that the client I’m meeting with is absolutely a perfect fit. On top of that, I’ll get a nudge to do certain things, start brainstorming projects, products, or promotions. I’ll get what I like to call, “downloads” that stretch my creative skills. More than that, this is the baby God chose to birth through me, so my spirituality is like my inner compass on what I will and will not do or cooperate in.
What type of topics do you talk about on your podcast "The Unspoken Podcast"?
I started this podcast with my sister that I met in graduate school. As mental health professionals, we often talk about everyday life with a therapeutic twist. “The Unspoken Podcast” is the place where we talk about everything under the sun, from mental health topics, to things we might be going through personally, and everything everyone wants to talk about, but might not have a safe space or person to discuss them with. We say the things people are thinking, and we sharpen each other’s mindsets as we discuss what it means to be two, Black, Godly, young adults in America.
Can you leave the audience with a relationship tip that they can implement in their daily lives?
Ooooh–I love this question! Sometimes the relationship is not disrupting your peace. Sometimes it’s disrupting your familiarity with a certain part of your life. A lot of times we are quick to say, “This relationship has to go because it’s disrupting my peace!” I challenge you to look at if the relationships in your everyday life are truly disrupting your peace, or is it challenging what you’ve come to accept, expect, and project as normalcy, and have you gotten comfortable in this state?
What are some words of advice you can give to entrepreneurs who want to start their own coaching business?
My biggest piece of advice would be to have experience and success in whatever you’re trying to coach other people in. Therapists have their degrees and licensure, but as a coach, for those who may not have degrees and a background in psychology like I do, our experiences and our lives are our currency. What transparency can you bring to the table? What real-life experiences can you offer? What have you overcome? Sometimes that may translate to getting a degree or a certification, but you don’t need that to start.
"My biggest piece of advice would be to have experience and success in whatever you’re trying to coach other people in. Therapists have their degrees and licensure, but as a coach, for those who may not have degrees and a background in psychology like I do, our experiences and our lives are our currency.
Outside of your business, what are some other hobbies that you enjoy?
I love tennis! I’ve been playing for 20 years. I played all throughout grade school and got a scholarship to play collegiately. It’s a sport that spans all ages and a full body sport. I’ve seen 4 years old play, and I’ve seen 90 year olds pick up a racket and give you a run for your money.
I enjoy anything related to the artistic, performing or creative arts, so theater, film, directing/producing, acting, graphic design, photography–all of it. I am a self-proclaimed film critic LOL. I love watching black cinema and watching it from all the angles–as an actor, producer, director, or consumer.
I enjoy binge watching old dramas like the early seasons of Grey’s Anatomy, Power, Desperate Housewives, How to Get Away with Murder, drinking a glass of Pinot Noir, talking to my best friend, and relaxing.