In 2011, Cheyenne Bostock found himself in a homeless shelter. He felt lost. He didn't even know what a "life coach" was and he didn't have any idea what he was going to do. He hadn't found what he now calls his "value" and purpose.
But now, Bostock is a life and relationship coach, motivational speaker, and author of the self-help book "Break Every Chain," which encourages people to break the chains that bind and live a life worth living. He has also written "Food, Sex & Peace Of Mind," and he has appeared on "The Bill Cunningham Show," "Quiet Storm with Lenny Green," "Good Day Dallas," "Chasing New Jersey" and more.
Now, GirlsAskGuys gives the proud family man and newly formed life guru a chance to speak candidly about his experiences, and about how your value is just lying there, waiting to be found...
GaG: We see a lot of young people (those in college, just out of college) who really don’t know what they want to do with their lives. What advice would you give them?
"The first thing to do is acknowledge that you’re just like everyone else: Trying to figure out what their value is, what their worth is. And if you can do this, it’s the key to success in family, community and work, because you have to find out who you are and personally develop yourself. You have to figure out how you can be of value to other people, so relationships are important.
Let’s define what a relationship is— it’s a connection between two people and in order for that to work, both parties have to be ready, willing and able to add value to one another. Like the relationship we have right now; the value you’re adding to my life is that you’re giving me a platform for my voice, and I’m adding the value of helping others figure out their direction and purpose, and helping them cultivate relationships. If we didn’t have both these things, this interview would be meaningless. And this is what I mean by value, and why it’s so important for a person to understand his or her own value."
GaG: One of your pieces of advice to people is to “start living.” Can you go into more detail on that idea?
"When I say that, I’m talking about realizing your potential by dreaming big and thinking big. I talk to so many men and women in homeless shelters and prisons and their biggest problem is that they feel they have nothing. They can’t dream or think big because they feel they have nothing to offer anyone. In 2011, I found myself living in a homeless shelter and one of the things I said to myself was, ‘I feel like I literally have nothing.’ But all I was doing was looking at the material things I lacked and once I got beyond that, I went inside myself and changed my outlook.
I said instead, ‘Cheyenne, you have everything, you’ve always had it; now you’re in the darkest place of your life and you can finally appreciate what you’ve had and will always have.’ So I urge people to ask themselves what I asked myself at that time: ‘What are you great at? What do you have that nobody else has?’ Well, I knew I had a good personality and sense of humor, a nice smile, and I loved to speak and inspire people.
That’s when I started ‘living.’ That’s when I figured out there was a way to use my natural gift and talent to help others. So, what is it you love to do? Is it writing, dancing, singing, rapping? Whatever it is, if you really take the time to dive into your passions and actually give yourself credit for those passions, that’s going to catapult you into a whole other stratosphere. You’ll start living when you use the gifts God gave you."
GaG: You said you didn’t know what a life coach even was. How did you get started on that path?
"When I was in the homeless shelter and still struggling with what I wanted to do, I went to volunteer my time at a nonprofit organization. But I was still saying, ‘I don’t have anything of value; what could they possibly want or need from me?’ So I had to switch my thinking because I knew my time and presence would be of value to a nonprofit organization, and I filled out the volunteer application. Then they said to me, ‘we don’t want you to volunteer, we want to hire you.’ I wasn’t expecting anything and I’d never done anything [in this field] but I ended up with a really healthy experience. For both myself and the organization, it was a healthy relationship."
GaG: "Healthy relationship?" And what’s your definition of that, exactly?
"In every healthy relationship, there’s no resistance. There’s only a willingness to be there for the other person. Without that reciprocity, the relationship is doomed."
GaG: People are finding it increasingly difficult to find a balance in life; i.e., balancing work, school, private lives, etc. Why do you think this is happening?
"This is happening because people’s hierarchy of needs is out of whack. Some people put work before family, others put friends before family, and some can’t even have a good relationship because of this lack of balance. Only when you put what you value at the center; like when you put your family and friendships and community and balance that with everything else, can your life be truly gratifying. And you’ll be both on the giving and receiving end of those healthy relationships, too.
I’d also like to say that this is why I like working for myself. I set the stage, I choose how much time I spend at work, where and when I can travel, etc. I control all of these things and at the end of the day, I know I’d always rather spend more time with my family."
GaG: What’s your take on the current dating and relationship scene among the 20-somethings? Is it more complex than ever?
"Well, I think times are changing. People are changing as well. In this day and age, women are definitely exploring more possibilities, and they rightfully should. They’re getting more power, they can do more as an entrepreneur and as a business woman and as an independent. But the thing is, I think some of that power is leaking into their relationships.
I was talking once on my social media regarding women asking men out on dates. We know women have the power, ability and resources to that, of course, but the facts show that men like – and want – to lead in a relationship. So, no matter how much a woman earns for a living, the man still wants to feel like a man. They still want to be the protector and provider, but a lot of women are becoming comfortable playing both roles. And when the women take this approach, some men just accept this and get too comfortable; they grow complacent and that complicates the quality of the relationship. We need our men to be leaders and providers and the ladies need to be nurturing as well. Both parties should showcase their strengths."
GaG: Is there anything else you’d like to say?
"Yes, living is about sharing resources. I always want to know how I can help them. If I can’t help them directly or personal, is there another way I can be of value to them? Like maybe could my network help them somehow? This is just so important for me and for others as well, I think."