Oli Anderson, life coach

Coaching for Realness

A REAL conversation can change your whole life.

Oh, hi there. I’m Oli Anderson.

I’m in the business of change and creativity.

What follows is an introduction to some of the things you might want to know about me and what it’s like to work with me.

Here’s the abridged version if you want to cut to the chase:

  • I offer two types of coaching: 1) a BESPOKE package which is designed around your needs, 2) a one-month intensive for creative businesses owners who want to make progress fast.
  • All my coaching comes back to the idea of bringing more REALNESS into everything that you do.
  • The main thing that we value in the coaching relationship is the TRUTH – our main aim is to create a judgement free container where we can uncover this truth, ACT on it, and then stay accountable for the duration of the coaching relationship so you get results.
  • I only work with people who I am confident I can help and who I know are as committed as I am to getting them where they want to be .
  • You will make progress quicker than you think once you get a grasp of how your beliefs are holding you back and stat taking action aligned with the real you (I know that sounds simplistic but book a call and I will show you).

You can book a free discovery call here – this will allow you to EXPERIENCE my coaching, to figure out what might be preventing you from getting what you want, and to get you moving again (by the end of the call you’ll have some clarity and next steps for sure):

Here’s the long-version if you want more details (again, the best way to find out if we’re suited is to book a call and EXPERIENCE the power of a collaborative coaching conversation).

What you can expect.

I’m a ‘Creative Performance Coach’ (which is just a way of saying I help people to push through their inner obstacles and emotional blocks so they can use their creativity to improve their lives and reach their creative/business goals). I’m based in Bradford in the United Kingdom but I work with life and business coaching clients all around the world.

Along with using structured coaching conversations to help people move forwards (through a process of raising Awareness, increasing Acceptance of themselves and reality, and then taking ACTION), I also use a number of other disciplines – like creative thinking, service design (thinking and doing), and practical philosophy to help them get RESULTS.

My belief is that no matter what you’re helping people to do, you’re helping them to get better at one thing: LIFE.

What this means is that whatever goals I’m helping people work on in their lives or businesses are actually a microcosm of their life as a whole – a testing ground, if you will, for some of the inner shifts they’re attempting to make as we go through the process.

What’s in the toolbox.

Coaching in itself is powerful and can help anybody on the planet move towards whatever goals they may be chasing (this is because the ‘art’ of coaching is just about designing a relationship that acts as a foundation for an exploratory process of looking at where somebody is, where they want to be, what’s stopping them getting there, and what they can DO about it).

I have a diploma in Personal Performance Coaching and am constantly adding new coaching tools, techniques, and strategies to my repertoire.

For people that are interested in working for themselves or creating their own business, I also offer a mentoring service based on my own experiences with sales and marketing strategies for ‘solopreneurs’ (or whatever word we’re using for coaches, consultants, content creators, and agency owners these days).

For a long time, I worked in mental health (first on a suicide helpline and then eventually as a service design lead and manager of the service as a whole).  I received a certificate in counselling skills here which informs my work with those who are moving from a ‘passive’ to ‘active’ mindset.

I also received training in dealing with people who have extreme trauma and dissociation (that shows up as hearing voices) with the Maastricht Approach to Hearing Voices – I was the team lead on this project and facilitated a group for voice hearers for a number of years (before the budget ran out).

This helped me to understand a lot about the mechanics of how the human psyche can work and how our unresolved emotional ‘stuff’ can take over our whole lives if we’re not careful (which reminds me of the famous Carl Jung quote about making the “unconscious conscious”).

I’m also a certified facilitator which has helped me to run group coaching sessions, team meetings, and training events.  This was probably most useful when I was running a dialogue circle – The Yorkshire Dialogue Circle – in Leeds, UK (which taught me more about communication than anything else I’ve done).

I also have a lot of experience in Service Design and working to create systems and services that deliver what service users most need. My approach here was refined and given a solid philosophical underpinning by collaborating over a few years with the Design Research Lab at the University of Trento in Italy and interviewing designers around the world for Design Decode.

This has helped to shape my approach to coaching creatives – especially the notion (derived from my book Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realness) that there is a link between our relationship with ourselves and the world that we design for ourselves.

The short-version is that the more REAL we are with ourselves, the better the lives and businesses we can design for ourselves. I use this philosophy to help everybody live better lives, creatives do better work, and to help business owners build better brands.

Finally, I’m a self-confessed ‘creative’ myself and have written a novel and a number of books about living a real life and making the  most of one’s humanity. I’ve been able to analyse this creative drive and process to death, learn how to live it, and am able to help others unblock themselves and get the creative results they want.

My coaching is a multidisciplinary system that brings all of these different elements together to help people get where they need to be and to become who they need to become to get there.


Here are some  things I’m interested in if you want to have a conversation or if I might be able to help you in general:

Realness: This is the one topic I talk about more than anything else (on and offline). Ultimately, it’s about cultivating a mindset that allows us to face and accept reality no matter what. This allows us to alleviate friction in our lives, accept ourselves unconditionally, and build something that really means something (in life, business, or anything else).

Coaching: To state the obvious. Coaching has changed my life and I’ve seen it change the lives of others. Reach out if you’re a coach and want to share ideas (or if you want coaching, of course).

Philosophy: A lot of my work is informed by Stoicism but I’m also a big fan of Arthur Schopenhauer. For me, philosophy needs to be practical (i.e. something you can live) and is really just about learning to think and act in coherence with one’s nature (which is part of nature and reality as a whole).

Psychology: I love to reflect on how human beings ‘work’ and the patterns and structures that unify us (for example, the Hero’s Journey). Like with philosophy, I think we need to take a practical approach to psychology which means focusing on the things that can help us have better emotional lives and not get in the way of our own goals.

Mental Health: Working in the mental health sector helped me to realise that a lot of the suffering people experience is unnecessary – it’s ultimately about how willing they are to accept themselves and life instead of resisting. I also learned this in my own life which is where most of the content my website comes from.

Spirituality: For me, spirituality isn’t about crystals or astrology or any of that BS (apologies if that’s your thing but I think those things are examples of denying our own power in an attempt to control the uncontrollable) – it’s simply about accepting what can’t be changed about ourselves and reality and changing the things that can be changed as we keep growing and moving forwards.

I think when we live in this ‘spiritual’ way, we don’t need to turn to external powers or sources for direction or validation and we can just live healthy, happy, lives without the friction that comes from resistance.

Wellbeing: The whole point of my coaching is to help people either live better lives or to use their creative projects to the same aim. Ultimately, this is about wellbeing and I’m interested in all the physical and mental aspects of this.

Fitness: I work out about six times a week (minimum), mainly focusing on calisthenics, yoga, active recovery (foam rolling, etc.), cardio and weights. This has helped me to stay incredibly healthy despite being on dialysis for the last fifteen years (after a failed kidney transplant) and to spend most of my weekends hiking in the Yorkshire Dales (after my workout of course).

Writing and creativity: I love writing (as you may have noticed) and the creative process itself (which to me is about becoming more open to life and then synthesising what it teaches us in the context of whatever project we’re working on).

If you’re a creative struggling with writer’s block or lacking inspiration then it probably has something to do with your mindset and the CHOICES that you’re making about yourself and your lifestyle. Get in touch because I can probably help you (we’ll have a chat and find out).

Service Design / Design Thinking – I’m a big believer in using design thinking as a process for reaching our goals and getting results. This is because it frees us up from dependence on outcomes and allows us to experiment a little more and to get better results in the long-run by testing and validating our assumptions against reality (and if you know me, you know it’s all about REALITY).

Marketing and branding strategies: I love working on marketing projects and building brands that are real but like to use design research strategies instead of just market research. This allows you to dive deep into the psychology of your audience and to really figure out what you can do to help them (and how you’ll let them know about it, of course). See truthbomb.co.uk if you want to get started with this kind of thing in your own business (or book a call below).

Content production / Web stuff: I think the ability we have to share content is one of the best things that could’ve ever happened to humanity as a whole. Yeah, there’s a lot of noise out there but the opportunities it gives us to get a REAL message out  there and connect with people are amazing.

Life: Honestly, I just love picking life to pieces and figuring out how it works and how we can get the most out of it no matter what. Humans gonna human is what I’ve mainly learned so far and it seems to work.

Working with me.

I generally only work as a coach with people in four month blocks (8 sessions, 1 every other week) – though many people have continued with new goals after the initial 8 have concluded.

Some clients prefer to meet every week and others every three weeks (depending on their needs and which stage of their journey they’re on).

There are two main reasons that I don’t sell single coaching sessions:

  1. It allows us to figure out a significant/impactful goal to work towards in that time (we figure this out before the 8 sessions) as well as the inner qualities and changes you might need to go through to get there (for example, confidence, self-discipline, whatever).
  2. It allows us to create a working relationship that extends beyond each session and gets deeper and more effective as the actions you take lead to a sense of continuity and growth from one session to the next.

The main power of coaching is in the relationship and so that’s what I work to build with my clients.

The exception to the four month block is a one-month intense coaching and creative partnership for service businesses: The Creative Performance Transformation Lab.

The experience of working with me as a coach revolves around designing a container for exploration where we value the TRUTH more than anything else.

Clients have described me as being “supportive” and “caring” but this support and care is given in the service of you uncovering the truth about yourself and then acting on this truth (your ‘realness’).

This means that we may have to explore some of your core beliefs, emotional ‘stuff’, or just assumptions that you’re identified with and this will occasionally lead to uncomfortable conversations. This is another reason why we will work to build a relationship: so you can trust me as we go through this rocky terrain (if we do).

Of course, the ACTIONS you take are the thing that makes the biggest difference – although I usually walk clients through a process of raising Awareness (of their true intentions, values, etc.), Acceptance (of the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ things about themselves and life they might’ve been hiding from), and then Action (going out there and DOING something with it all).

Another big piece of the puzzle is ACCOUNTABILITY and I find that a lot of clients find this to be the most valuable part of the relationship.

Really, all this means is that we put structures in place to make sure you ACT on the insights you uncover in the coaching sessions themselves (normally, this just means checking in regularly throughout the week whilst you’re out in the field getting things done).

I’m also a big believer in the value of self-reflection and so I give my clients a ‘Pre-session Update’ to sit down and fill in before each session. This ensures that they’re monitoring their own progress and that we can build on any learning that arises from one session to the next.

Finally, during every coaching session we have, I make notes and collect insights. After the session I will look for patterns and themes in what has been said and type up even more detailed notes about your situation and path forward.

These will be emailed to you as more fuel for reflection (a lot of clients continue to get insight after the sessions as they process and integrate everything), and also ensure that you have a record of everything that was discussed, a clear list of the actions you need to take, and a better understanding of where you are and where you’re going.

The results we can get.

Everybody is different but the underlying pattern that unites all of my clients is that they go from having an unreal relationship with themselves where they’re not getting the results they want (i.e. inauthentic, passive, directionless, having unhealthy boundaries, lacking confidence, etc. etc.) to a real relationship where they’re at least taking massive steps towards the results they want (aligned with their true values and intentions and accepting themselves).

Here are some things people have said:

“I love this new me, I know that the end product will be a total beast, feel like I’m part way there!! Ringing you was the best thing I ever did!!!”
-Client testimonial

“I have become very determined to see my work through. I have learned loads.”
-Client testimonial

“The main benefits of this action-packed coaching package were dissolving unrealness and the masks and Oli’s compassion, patience, and brilliance.”
-Client testimonial

“I am not a victim anymore.”
-Client testimonial

“As a result of this coaching journey I have fully explored my ideas and how to make them real, pushing myself beyond my normal levels of analysis and understanding.”
-Client testimonial

“The main benefit of this coaching package was finally pushing myself out of the ‘preparation’ phase and into action.”
-Client testimonial

“I used to be unreal with fear and shame (predominantly) I have broken through that layer and now there feels like there is nothing else worth doing than making my ambitions reality.”
-Client testimonial

“I definitely have more confidence in my abilities and what I can achieve.”
-Client testimonial

“Has given me renewed energy.”
-Client testimonial

“I now feel confident that I can look for a better job, one which aligns with the creative work I want to be doing and I know I am capable of. “
-Client testimonial

“I am more comfortable with the artwork I produce as a creative. No longer do I feel like my art is not good enough. Now I am getting more comfortable in my skin and with who I am. “
-Client testimonial

“I have learned that I am capable of overcoming my impostor syndrome and perfectionism to make progress towards my goals.”
-Client testimonial

“I have been able to balance my work life, working on my personal goals, and my family life.”
-Client testimonial

“I feel calmer and able to reflect in the moment.”
-Client testimonial

“I feel like I am flowing again”
-Client testimonial

“I have grown more emotionally mature.”
-Client testimonial

“I feel more comfortable and confident with myself.”
-Client testimonial

“My desires, my relationship patterns, my wounds, the connection
between my inner and outer states…as within so without has never been this clear.”
-Client testimonial

“There were some epic moments.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli really helped me delve deeper into myself and uncover my true goals and desires. He helped me discover that fear could not (would not) stop me getting where I want to be.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli really showed me how we create fears and obstacles ourselves – and that freeing our mind of self-structured barriers is possible and essential for the process.”
-Client testimonial

“Within the series of coaching, I gained the trust (or better say re-gained) that I can and will pursue my business goal, which steps I will take, and that no plans are too big.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli handled firmly held limiting beliefs with persistence and sensitivity that lead to many moments of personal insight.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli’s style is supportive, warm, and inspiring.”
-Client testimonial

“I gained such clarity on my current situation and where I needed to make progress. My goals were made clear, together with the action steps I had to take to accomplish them. I gained insight into how to direct my time and energy to achieve my objectives.”
-Client testimonial

“The coaching techniques Oli used helped raise my awareness and change certain unhealthy unconscious behaviour for the better.”
-Client testimonial

“The impact of Oli’s coaching has been very significant and had an almost profound impact on my life. We explored me finding a more real and genuine version of who I was which resulted in me developing a new look, dating someone for the first time in four years and, most significantly, me leaving my job of eleven years to explore a different path in life.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli’s coaching was very timely, powerful, and insightful.”
-Client testimonial

“Oli asked amazing questions that made me think about things in different perspectives. Looking at things how I’d never seen them before really helped me see life differently and made me make decisions I would have never thought possible.”
-Client testimonial

“Extremely useful. Allowed me to take a look at my life from a different perspective.”
-Client testimonial

“I was initially somewhat cynical of ‘coaching’ but would absolutely recommend others use Oli’s services in the future.”
-Client testimonial

Books and Resources

I wrote a novel (Synchronesia: A Depressing Existential Novel) which is mainly irrelevant to my coaching work.

I also wrote three other books that are related to cultivating an attitude of realness and growing into a more whole version of yourself:

Personal Revolutions: A Short Course in Realnessthis explores how we create an unreal image of ourselves that causes most of the problems in our lives by making us deny reality.  It deconstructs the process of growing past this and living in a more life-enhancing way.

“Changed my life.”
-Amazon Review of Personal Revolutions

“I wish I had this book earlier in my life. It hurts when you read it as your ego won’t like many of it, but it teaches you great lessons.”
-Amazon Review of Personal Revolutions

Shadow Life: Freedom from BS in an Unreal World – this book goes a level deeper and explores the relationship with our own shadow (the ‘parts’ of ourselves that we have deemed to be unacceptable because of our conditioning and so disown).

It looks at the mechanics of our relationship with ourselves and how we can start growing real (through Awareness, Acceptance, and Action).

“First ever hands-on book I have read that describes in an astonishingly practical way how the suffered human psyche functions.”
-Amazon Review of Shadow Life

Dialogue / Ego: Real Communication – this just explores how our ego ‘stuff’ gets in the way of us communicating with ourselves, the world, and reality as a whole.

7-Day Personality Transplant System Shock for Realness and Life Purpose: This is a donation-based (so you can pay whatever you want, including nothing) course that I created to help spread some of the ideas I talk about in relation to growing real.

It has 7 modules spread over 7 days (about an hour each) with accompanying homework and it will help you to figure out your relationship with yourself, help you learn how to stop holding yourself back, and explore how you can get better results from life as a whole by removing unnecessary friction.

My service approach.

My approach to customer service is that I don’t have ‘customers’.  To me, that word is too transactional for what I’m doing (building relationships that help people get where they need to be – you can’t do coaching properly in a transactional way, imo).

I suppose I could say that I’m client-focused (a client has a relationship with an individual; a customer makes a transaction with a business) but maybe that doesn’t go far enough either.

My main focus is to build something REAL.

This means that I will only work with people if I genuinely feel like I’m the best person to help them with whatever problems they bring to me and whatever goals they’re trying to move towards.  It also helps if we like each other and that I’m passionate about your success.

In a practical sense, all this means is that before we agree to have a coaching relationship we’ll have an exploratory call about where you are, where you’re trying to get, and what’s stopping you getting there.

We’ll figure out if we can be a good fit and if we are we’ll work together; if not, then I can either: 1) help to refer you to somebody in my network who might be better suited to help you, or 2) support you in whatever non-coaching way I might be able to (depending on your needs).

If you’d like to talk to me and see if I can help you to get where you need to be then you can find a free slot in my calendar here:

Many thanks for reading and I hope you get where you need to be.


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