My Coaching Story

My road to coaching started when I graduated from Cornell University in 1994. I found myself in a position like many college graduates before and since, there were no jobs.

I moved home, started waitressing nights at a local restaurant, and found a job at a CD-ROM publisher, working as an admin. My first job: create the company web site. “What the heck is the world wide web anyway? Get the new girl to figure it out.”

And thus began a decade-long romp in the early days of dot com. I helped my companies go public, and watched many self-proclaimed geeky dreamers make their weird and wacky visions come true. Ridiculous ideas like USWeb, Netscape and CNET.

I had a blast and worked alongside gifted visionaries.

Steve Jobs Said It Best

Steve Jobs

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things – they push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” – Steve Jobs

And although I loved working with entrepreneurs, I was not a tech gal at heart. I liked things I could hold. I wanted to see, smell, touch and taste my work. And so began my next phase: cooking.

I enrolled in culinary school with a desire to help people gain confidence in the kitchen cooking for themselves and their families. After a decade of business dinners and travel, I was overweight and bloated. I believed that the way to reclaim my health (and help my family, should I be fortunate to have one some day) was to learn to cook.

Culinary School, Martha Stewart & The Wooden Spoon

I put myself through culinary school, then staged at Jean Georges, and worked for Martha Stewart for several years. I helped introduce Martha’s Everyday Food magazine, and was asked to co-host the corresponding TV show.

The Wooden Spoon

Not long after, I decided to start the private cooking school of my dreams: The Wooden Spoon. I would help people learn to cook in their very own kitchens! I would help people develop the skills and confidence to cook.

This led to more media opportunities, including hosting two additional TV shows: TLC’s Home Made Simple, and Lifetime’s Cook Yourself Thin, and a weekly food & travel webcast for Yahoo called Blue Ribbon Hunter that lasted two fabulous years.

Allison Task: Blue Ribbon Hunter

During this time, I realized that what I loved most about these opportunities was not necessarily the food, but the honest conversations I’d have with people while we cooked. The conversations about career and family – there’s something about the intimacy of cooking and eating together that helps the truth pour forward in a powerful way.

Coaching & Family

This is when I pursued a coaching certificate at NYU. I wanted to help people in a more significant way.

I coached part-time while hosting these shows, then stopped working for a few years while I had three children. I am now the mother of 3-year-old twin boys, a 1 1/2-year-old daughter and stepmother of a 14-year old woman-to-be. I live in Montclair, NJ with my husband and our brood.

I returned to coaching full time in the fall of 2015, eager to put those skills to work again. In addition to helping clients with career change and wellness, I am now also helping clients with modern family issues, including fertility, step-parenting, preparing for baby and the first year with baby.

I look forward to working with you!

My Coaching Background

Healthy Habits Coach

From 2010-2014, I served as the Healthy Habits coach for Cooking Light magazine, working directly with readers to add healthy eating habits (eat more vegetables, eat fish, reduce sodium) to their lifestyle. All clients maintained their healthy eating habits at least 1 year after our coaching engagement.

As the host of Cook Yourself Thin (TV show on Lifetime), I helped guests rework their favorite recipes and helped them start cooking more. After 6 weeks, guests lost between 5 and 15 pounds, and in most cases their partners also lost weight.

Career Coach

Most of my coaching clients have focused on career change. They have run the gamut from executives moving up in their company to executives departing their company to start their own businesses. Some clients have had wonderful careers and are now trying to balance the demands of parenting with continuing that career; or evolving their career into something that offers more balance.

Modern Family Coach

At 42, I found myself with a newborn baby girl, twin 16-month-old toddlers, and a 12-year-old stepdaughter. I had been married for 2 1/2 years. Talk about multiTASKing!

As a result of my personal experiences, I also coach individuals seeking support during infertility, stepparenting, or your run-of-the-mill craziness of two working parents trying to make time to enjoy their family. I want to help you find the humor, grace and time. You don’t need to lose yourself to be a wonderful parent, stepparent or spouse.

You have the answers.
I have the questions.

Prior to Coaching

Education

I have been working as a life coach since 2005. I received my coaching certificate from New York University, and a degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Cornell University. I am also a culinary graduate of the Institute for Culinary Education, and earned a Masters degree in Food Studies from NYU.

Author / Host

My books include You Can Trust a Skinny Cook and Cooking Light Lighten Up America. In addition to Cook Yourself Thin, I was also the host of TLC’s Home Made Simple and traveled the country for two years as host of Yahoo’s Blue Ribbon Hunter. I was a food stylist for Food Network, a culinary producer for Martha Stewart, Food Editor for Atkins Nutritionals, and contributing editor for Cooking Light Magazine. Prior to my work in food, I worked in marketing for CNET, Viant and Earthweb.

Personal Coach Allison Task

Let’s talk it through during an introductory consultation.