Columbia College Affinity Magazine: Spring 2021

Page 26

Right: Linda Hayles published “Girl, Get Your Courage Factor” in 2016, available on Amazon; far right, Hayles with her children

In the spring of 2020, when it felt like the world hit pause and the threat of the COVID-19 virus stunned local and national economies, Hayles turned up the dial. She launched a new 90-day coaching series and secured seven clients in eight days. By May, she hired a coach of her own to help restructure her business plan. Hayles believes she is in a unique position to help others.

Spring 2021

It wasn’t until she hit rock bottom 15 years ago that Hayles found her inner strength. She found herself suddenly homeless and the locks to her home changed by an abusive husband. Unsure of what to do next, she drove to her night class and told her professor that she was going to withdraw. Her professor urged her to stay in school – encouragement that made all the difference.



“Getting my degree in psychology as an adult gave me the skillset to help my clients overcome their limiting beliefs so they can make the money they want to make in their own businesses,” Hayles says. “I don’t make all this money in my business because I’m such a great salesperson. I make this money because I’m great at developing people — thanks to my degree.” Hayles attended Columbia CollegeOrlando, where she earned straight A’s and made the Dean’s List. She

believes the right education can change lives: case in point, “I went to school at 36 years old with a GED and graduated at 40 with a bachelor’s degree.” Columbia College’s location in Orlando was established in 1975 to fill an educational gap for non-traditional students in that corner of the country. Today, in addition to its main campus, the college has more than 30 locations nationwide and an expansive Online Program. Like many adult learners, Hayles balanced evening courses while providing for family. Never a fan of the term “side hustle,” Hayles laid the ground work for her business plan while at Columbia College. In 2013, she relocated to Houston for a fresh start. Her initial goal of becoming a therapist didn’t satisfy the craving for a high-energy platform to share her skillset. Instead, Hayles became as a relationship coach for women. She wrote a book and even flew to the Cayman Islands to host a TEDx talk for females in business. By 2019, she was determined to turn her