Interview with Cancer Coach Caroline Haines

In this video I’m talking to Caroline Haines, a professional health coach and part of the team behind the Tree of Life anti-cancer lifestyle community and programme. We already covered a Q&A where we got to know Caroline so for this interview we’re delving a bit deeper to find out where Caroline grew up, what she loved to do when she was a child and what she likes to do now, the topic of her last “passionate debate”, what inspired her to do what she does today, her proudest professional achievement, a truly pivotal or lightbulb moment, what she feels makes the Tree of Life anti-cancer lifestyle community and coaching programme revolutionary, and more.

Transcript of the Interview

This transcript was computer generated and might contain errors.

James Walters: Today, I’m joined by Caroline Haines. A professional health coach and part of the team behind the Tree of Life, anti-cancer lifestyle, community and program, Caroline. Hello. Good stuff,…

Caroline Haines: Hello.

James Walters: right then. So for those that don’t know Let’s start with a bit of a backstory. tell us who you are, where you grew up, and what you love to do when you were a child,

Caroline Haines: So, I’m Caroline, I grew up in Portsmouth. So by the sea, I now live in Surrey. And when I was a child, because I live by the sea, I did a lot of sailing. So my parents and my grandparents are sailors. So, every summer holidays, we would borrow my grandparents boat, and with Salem to France, and that sounds quite glamorous. But actually in a bucket and chalk it over. it was kind of days at sea with me and my brother fighting with each other. So, it wasn’t this luxurious yacht, it was. I’m used to a lot of dinghy sailing as well. I used to be in the National Youth Squad. So, …

James Walters: He?

Caroline Haines: Every weekend I’ll be doing competitions or training and again, that sounds quite fun. But actually, in the middle of winter, you’d have to train and, all the ropes I start you’d be getting this freezing cold, like water in your face. So, it gives you quite a lot, kind of grit and

Caroline Haines: Termination sailing through the winter months.

James Walters: They’re amazing, I can resonate with that. I’m actually having to go and spending quite a bit of time in a motorhome. So I’m not quite weaning in a bucket but parking near public audits,…

Caroline Haines: Yeah.

James Walters: but So I wonder if your time by the sea has been kind of part of Creating who you are. Today because he has a lot of kind of thought and contemplation for me personally when I’m around water, I don’t know. How do you think that kind of influenced your life?

Caroline Haines: Yeah, I love being by the same, my parents still live by the sea. So, I go about all quite a lot, but unfortunately, I don’t get to spend as much time as I would like to buy the sea at the moment. But yeah. It’s very calming, isn’t it being awesome and…

James Walters: And yeah.

Caroline Haines: also kind of understanding that the power of the tides because where they live, sometimes there’s a really high tide, then everything will be flooded. And you really kind of understand the power of nature. That’s just all around. It’s quite incredible.

James Walters: Yeah, yeah. The connectedness of it all definitely good. not for this one,…

Caroline Haines: 

James Walters: but in future. Yeah, I’d love to explore the cross channel trips a bit more detail, but we’ll do that next time. And so, it sounds like that was something You’d love as far as experiences and maybe you don’t get as much time to do it now. But yeah, what do you like to do now when you’ve got some spare time,

Caroline Haines: I’ve got four children so I don’t have an awful lot but they’ve all play rugby and football. So weekends are kind of mainly taken up with, watching burying them around to matches basically and to training. But obviously, I like to make time for myself as well because it can’t just be ferrying them around. So I love doing exercise as a hit class at the gym that I go to that.

James Walters: Yeah.

Caroline Haines: I absolutely love. So, I try and do that kind of three or four times a week and they set the studio up. So, they’ve got treadmills, they’ve got weights and they’ve got boxing. And you spend, different amounts of time on these different stations and everyone wears these heart rate monitors and they have them and say

James Walters: Okay, you’re your heart rate in competition with others,…

Caroline Haines: Yeah. That’s…

James Walters: interesting? Okay.

Caroline Haines: what I like right on the treadmills. You need to get into the red zone, which is the highest kind of heart rate. And so obviously you can’t not work hard, you have to work. So I love doing that.

James Walters: Okay.

Caroline Haines: I tried to do an hour of walking a day and I love listening to podcasts and on my walks usually and they’re usually about kind of health or nutrition or wellness.

Caroline Haines: I’m also a trusty of one of my kids schools so that takes up quite a lot of time. And I love reading. my eyes are definitely bigger than my calendar. In terms of all of these books arrive and, there’s piles of books in every corner of the house with that. I kind of half red or not even half, red, 10%, red, some of the. And then other than that, I love seeing my friends and, making connections and having fun with my friends.

James Walters: Right, all good stuff that shows you practise what you preach. and…

Caroline Haines: Yeah.

James Walters: I can imagine so listening to lots of podcasts reading. Books is probably lots of new things in inspiration. what was the last kind of passionate debate? You had


Caroline Haines: there is a continual passionate debate. That happens in my house, probably every day, which is about screen time. And the amount of screen time that my children are allowed, you’ll see. They’re always campaigning for more screen time. And they’re always telling me that it’s not fair because all of their friends, get, more time on their screens or gaming time. So there’s a constant passionate debate in my house about that because obviously yeah, I don’t believe that they should have unlimited access to screen so we have various I’m going to say rules That sounds quite

Caroline Haines: That sounds very strict. I mean they do like to call me rules because I’ve always like, There’s a new rule that’s happening. Yeah. So there’s a lot of debate in my house about screen time.

James Walters: Interesting. Yeah, I’m sounds maybe similar to you. so after my Sonny is nine, he’s ten in December. Yeah, I try not to have specific rules. I try not to tell him what to do. my aim is to give him all the facts and kind of coach him to hopefully make the right decision. But yeah, I am so Dr. Catherine Steele, who we work with recommended? A book called between Vice.

Caroline Haines: Mmm. What?

James Walters: Quell Smith, I think that is for Queens, basically sets from 8 to 13 year olds. I’m not quite on the chapter about digital devices but yeah I’m interested to see from more of a progressive angle how to handle screen time but us is pretty good. I’ll be like, Do you know how long you’ve been on there? it’s Diversity is important. So it’s good to do other stuff so good stuff. So,

Caroline Haines: You probably take a leaf out of your book. I mean, they definitely think I’m too prescriptive with it.

James Walters: He Okay, interesting, and good stuff. And then what about Things that make you laugh or when was the last time you laughed out loud?

Caroline Haines: And I mean, my youngest child is three. So, it’s easy to laugh. I think when you’ve got three year old because they’re such loons, are they,…

James Walters: Yeah.

Caroline Haines: them like silly dancing or singing? And he’s just started calling us fam, all of us instead of family. So I’ll set the time real by Pass me the catch up. All right, we say He said This morning, I didn’t get him. A drink quick enough. This morning at breakfast. Time told me I was draining his energy.

James Walters: Love it. Excellent.

Caroline Haines: And then he said I’ve almost got a tummy ache. Which I thought was funny because I was like not,…

James Walters: Nice.

Caroline Haines: you can almost have a tummy ache. That’s

James Walters: Is that connected to his body? You brilliant. Excellent and good stuff and let’s get to know you a bit more What do to time by the sea and your families, obviously kind of big inspirations, but is there? Anything mainly that inspired you to do what you do today?

Caroline Haines: before I became a coach, I had a different career so I did a maths degree when I was a university and this is a conversation I’m having with my teenager at the moment I’m saying to him. I wish I’d actually thought more at the time about what career path I’ve chosen because I kind of fell into the career before I was a coach I kind of fell into that career. So I worked in banking in finance and I liked it but I didn’t love it. It was okay. I’m grateful for all of the experience and the kind of skills that I learned when I was there and, I did a lot of travelling and, I had my maternity leave with some of my children. And, the pay was good and it was a good place to be, but I kind of knew that What I really wanted to do, it wasn’t really meaningful to me and when I was there, I had career coaching.

Caroline Haines: Since I found it so empowering it completely changed my life and prior to that, I always kind of thought that I maybe wanted to be a nutritionist. But once I saw this coach, I then realised that you could, have this kind of transformative experience and ask these questions and help people to have this transformation but also combine it with health as well, which is why then retained and became a health coach.

James Walters: Amazing. I mean, it’s funny things. And if that person must have been inspiring for you to feel a kind of a benefit from it, I wonder if they hadn’t been that person maybe you’d have specialised in just one area rather than kind of more of holistic approach as a coach.


Caroline Haines: Yeah, maybe. I mean I’m not sure I’ve ever come across a coach that isn’t inspiring because it’s not necessarily the person. It’s the questions that they ask you the thinking that they get you to do as the coachee that is the powerful bit.

James Walters: Yeah agree Yeah theres I personally think questions definitely show a sign of intelligence, ultimately and connectedness to the conversation as well and things like that. So Good stuff.

Caroline Haines: Yeah.

James Walters: And how about a proudest moment professionally. so far

Caroline Haines: 

Caroline Haines: last week I organised this event for NHS coaches and it was our first face-face conference summit that we had in London. And I was really proud of that because the first time that we’ve done it, I mean, it’s the first time that I’ve organised an event like that as well, but we just had really good feedback and all of the speakers that we had. So we had, a whole lineup of speakers throughout the day that were just brilliant and really inspiring and it’s the first time that everyone had come together kind of face to face and sometimes being a coach it can be a little bit isolating because you work one to one with people and you don’t work with colleagues as such so you don’t necessarily always know what they’re doing. So it was just a really lovely event to kind of connect everybody up and everyone share experiences of coaching and get lots of kind of tips and advice and yeah, it was brilliant.

James Walters: You want to give us a quick.

Caroline Haines: It was really fun.

James Walters: Shout out to what that was called or anybody interested can find out more information.

Caroline Haines: I mean, it’s been a God now. And I haven’t organised the next one,…

James Walters: Yeah. Not.

Caroline Haines: but I work with Southwest London, training hubs on it It was the NHS. Health and Wellbeing Coaches Summit?

James Walters: Very All Good stuff. and how about a light bulb moment, a kind of a pivotal moment of Are any that stand out on your journey to where you are today?

Caroline Haines: I think when I first started working for the NHS, my clinical director at the time, was showing me some information and he showed me one stat that’s really kind of stuck with me. And that was that 40% of NHS. Spend goes on managing long-term conditions. Obviously, there’s less than 40% of us. Have got long-term conditions, but actually, that was a real kind of light bulb moment about how poaching can really impact that number actually, because I think coaching works really well proactively to help people proactively manage their health. So, potentially before they get a long term condition to help people, affect whether they get a long-term condition or not, in fact, things like diabetes, for example, can be prevented and can be reversed as well. So, that really stuck with me. And, that’s quite inspiring to think that,

Caroline Haines: coaches are hopefully going to play a part in terms of, population health and the prevention of diseases as well.

James Walters: Yeah and empowerment a transfer of knowledge often,…

Caroline Haines: Yeah. Yeah.

James Walters: isn’t it? Which is a great segue into the tree of life. So the kind of reason we’re talking is that you’re part of the approved group of coaches, and behind the Tree of anti-cancer lifestyle, community and program. And yeah, we love that. You are part of the team are just wondered. What do you feel makes Tree of Life different? We love to say it’s revolutionary but yeah, what do you think sets Tree of Life apart from other alternative options?

Caroline Haines: I haven’t really seen anything like the tree of life before So, I think it’s quite unique but it also, encompasses everything doesn’t it from, sleep to nutrition to movement to stress. But also, it doesn’t, discount conventional medicine at all. So, it works alongside conventional medicine as well. So, I think it’s really powerful and I think people going through the Tree of Life will naturally resonate or be really interested in different aspects of it and want to find out more potentially about, different aspects and that will be really personal to the people. But also I think the community aspect will be really powerful as well. So bring In people together, having that accountability can be really powerful.

James Walters: Yeah, good stuff. Yeah, when we were creating the program we felt that for something that’s online and on demand it’s very difficult to give us specific prescriptive approach to life because that’s just not realistic. Everybody is unique, everybody’s life is different. And so that’s where one-on-one cancer coaching comes in, with somebody like yourself where you can give something prescriptive because, the individual person. So, yeah, it was important to make something that speaks to many people as a stepping stone towards coaching and good stuff. And so we also designed Tree of Life for every stage of cancer. So, from prevention to diagnosis and treatment to survivors, and also caregivers of loved ones with cancer, which group of people do you feel Tree of Life is going to help the most?


Caroline Haines: That’s hard because obviously it can help all of those groups that is very hard. I mean, I think obviously diagnosis is going to be a really, really transitional time for people because they’re going to be feeling very kind of frightened and out control and let down and worried and actually, going in with the tree of life at that point and potentially feel like they’re doing something really positive, when actually the other areas of their life might feel out of control and,…

James Walters: If you yeah.

Caroline Haines: not so positive. So I think that I’ll have a really big impact at that stage.

James Walters: And it’s important to note that the Tree of Life community, one of the program that includes live group, education with a professional health coach and the entire seven module workbook. Art are actually included in the free plan and considering so much is available for free. How do you think this helps people to get started especially those that are affected by cancer, who may be in a very vulnerable place, emotionally and potentially financially. and those that may be struggling to pay for bespoke support.

Caroline Haines: Yeah, exactly. people aren’t going to want to pay for something that potentially they haven’t tried and they don’t trust. How do you know that it’s for you? So I think giving it for free, those first few images. Free is really key, especially, as you said for people that, potentially not working. Because they t because of their conditions. So yeah, I think that makes it really access.

James Walters: Good stuff. And you already mentioned And so community support and social connections are an integral part of Tree of Life. There’s actually specific lessons in module one about This area. What’s your personal definition of a community?

Caroline Haines: Bowl. And I think a community is a group of people that you feel some sort of affinity to. So perhaps you have a shared sense of purpose but I guess within that community, you don’t have to have the same opinions, they can challenge your thinking certainly, but finding people who you feel like you can be yourself with, so you can be vulnerable with and they can be vulnerable with you without judgement.

James Walters: Yeah, good stuff. And what do you favour? The positives of surrounding yourself with that sort of group of people.

Caroline Haines: I think you can really help on the journey that people are going to go on. you can learn from them and ask questions if you need to because there’s going to be people within that community, everyone’s going to be at different stages on their journey but you’re working towards a similar goal and that can make you feel that sense of togetherness of being in it alone. And it’s building those social connect works and…

James Walters: .

Caroline Haines: that network as you mentioned

James Walters: Yeah, good stuff. So they talked a bit about three of life. that the program itself is seven modules. So we cover that the free module one is on stress management and emotional And then the modules that do require a paid subscription their behaviour change nutrition exercise sleep gut health and protection from toxins. So yeah you didn’t already mention it. But yeah, one of the reasons we feel it’s revolutionary is because there’s kind of those individual things out there, but there’s nothing that we’ve seen that puts it all in one place which we absolutely love. And what improvements, do you see members of Tree of Life making as they progress through the programs such as after month two? and so on,

Caroline Haines: So, making changes is hard, isn’t it? we all know that I’m sure what everyone’s kind of tried to make changes before, and sometimes people are successful, and sometimes you’re not. But, you’ve only got to think about, New Year’s Eve resolutions, for example, and people make use the resolutions and then sometimes it can be hard to actually stick to those changes. So, I think when people are going through the Tree of Life,


Caroline Haines: obviously, that first module is stressed. So I think that’s kind of building up people’s resilience to make that change in the first place. So people feel, confidence because they’re building up slowly with these stress modules and trying to reduce stress and that’s going to help them when they try to make further changes. And I think as they go through, changing habits can take quite a long time. So to change a habit, you have to put quite a lot of conscious thought into it, certainly in the first few months. So making these changes slowly and building on these changes kind of month, or month or month. But not trying to change everything all at once because that’s too kind of overwhelming and hard. So just making these small changes and cementing them in and then once they’re cemented in after a few months and that time period’s going to be different for everyone, but then making some further changes. So I think, by the time you get to up to kind of 12 months, people are going to feel like they’re in a really good place and they can do this and

Caroline Haines: Want to make more changes, people are going to feel, confident in their ability to make changes as well.

James Walters: Yeah, I Changes is a process and small stepping stones. Often can give people the confidence to keep going. So, yeah.

Caroline Haines: Yeah.

James Walters: One of mine on my own journey was wild swimming or super cold showers, that it’s so cold.

Caroline Haines: Yeah.

James Walters: I don’t want to get in, but it’s a challenge. I know I can win and be successful and yeah, some of those quick wins are important to give you confidence to keep going. and what do you see is the barriers To change. And how might you approach that as a health coach?

Caroline Haines: I think the barriers for change are going to be not engaging with the content. So, when you’re going through the Tree of Life, making sure that you’re not scrolling through your phone at the same time. And, you haven’t got the TV in the background, not engaging with the content and just going through it as because you feel like you have to. that’s never going to be very kind of inspirational for change and I guess not being involved in the community. I think that can really help not asking for help when you need it. Not setting up accountability. So, I think my advice would basically be to immerse yourself in the content. Get as much help, as you can from the coaches, from your support network, you tell people what changes you’re going to make so that you have that support network around you and Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable when you’re finding it hard as well.

James Walters: Yeah, Brilliant. thanks so much Caroline. It’s been lovely learning a bit more about your personal and professional life. And for those that are watching or listening to this, you can find Caroline Haines in the Tree of Life, Community and program. Just go to Www.the Cancer and you’ll find all links on there to sign up for a free plan. Or if you’re researching on behalf of a workplace, wellness provider, and insurer, and employer, or a cancer treatment provider. You can also book a demo to see how our programs can help your organisation. That’s it for this one. Thanks so much Caroline and we’ll catch everybody on the next one. Thank you. Bye.

Caroline Haines: Thank you.

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Tree of Life is a new health, lifestyle, and anti-cancer community and programme that stands against a growing culture of chronic illness and reduced quality of life. It’s revolutionary because it combines Behaviour Change with The Anticancer Super 6™ — Stress Management, Nutrition, Exercise, Sleep, Gut Health, and Protection from Toxins — to help you improve your quality of life. 🌟

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Alternatively, if you’re researching on behalf of an organisation, see how Tree of Life can serve your organisation, book a demo for your organisation today.

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Written by James Walters

Community Manager at the Tree of Life Anti-Cancer Lifestyle Community and Programme and The Cancer Coach Cancer wellness and coaching programmes for Individuals, Workplace Wellness Providers & EAPs, Insurers, Employers, and Cancer Treatment Providers.

Dec 24, 2023

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