Meet Olivia Burnham, M.A., PCC

Olivia is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) and Wedding Dance Choreographer who uses an embodied, presence-based approach to her dance education and coaching practice, helping her clients holistically align within their bodies. As a longtime dance educator who has lived some years abroad, she has had the privilege of hearing the stories of people across the world. Time and again she has been shown that, regardless of where we come from, the challenges we face and the way we choose to meet them remain remarkably similar. Her Master’s in Dance Anthropology and PCC from the International Coaching Federation have enhanced her desire to bring joy to people through dance and work with them in illuminating their path forward, by helping them get back in touch with their Whole Selves.

More About Olivia: Ever since I can remember, I’ve had the itch to “leave” – leave the island I grew up on for high school in the city, leave my little state to attend college in the south, leave college to spend a year in a foreign country. Every time I leave, I’m launching myself into the unknown – as Simon Sinek calls it, the “unimagined future” – and those are the places, surrounded by strange food, foreign languages, and a different pace of living, where I grow the most.
The trick is, we don’t have to “leave” for these profound realizations to occur – some of the most beautiful moments I’ve been privileged to witness happen when a client realizes just how much is possible. It’s in these moments that I think, “There’s no place I’d rather be.”

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Fun Stuff I’ve Done: Lived in Spain, France, Hungary and England; rowed a marathon; spent the month of February in New Zealand when I was 9 for the America’s Cup; learned traditional French, Norwegian, Romanian, Malaysian, Greek and Hungarian social dances; watched love stories grow between people from different countries; taught dance in Spanish; visited the Plitviče Lakes National Park in Croatia; road tripped across the US multiple times.

Stuff I Love: Learning new languages; reading fantasy and historical fiction; writing poetry; creating something with my hands; shopping consignment; supporting local artists; connecting people; traveling somewhere familiar, traveling somewhere new; drinking gluhwein at German Christmas markets and scotch in front of the fire; enjoying oysters, dark n stormy cocktails and porch naps on Fishers Island, NY; fairy lights; sailing in the summer; walking my rescue pup Milo off-leash; giving my nephew raspberries; singing (badly) to Broadway tunes and quoting Lord of the Ring with my sisters; teaching dance to literally anyone.

Still Yet To Do: Explore Asia, Africa and South America; hike the dog-friendly part of the Appalachian Trail; taste scotch at the Oban distillery; see the Grand Canyon and visit the Hawaiian islands.

Favorite Accomplishments: Training for and earning my PCC from the ICF in just 13 months; living in Europe for two years to earn my master’s degree in Dance as Knowledge, Practice & Heritage; presenting research on Dance for Parkinson’s in Paris, Budapest and London; and my personal favorite: putting together Thanksgiving dinners in Europe for international peers.

Guiding Philosophy: “The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away.” – Pablo Picasso.

My Motto: “Sail away from the harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

Olivia has a kind and calm presence which creates a comfortable environment to dive into anything that’s on your mind. It’s rare that you have a conversation with friends or family where you focus 100% on you and follow all your thoughts and feelings to their natural conclusion, but that’s what coaching sessions with Olivia allow you to do. Afterwards, I felt like I understood myself a bit better and had a tangible next step to start meeting my goals.” – Abi, Legal Operations Project Manager
Olivia makes me feel heard, and that’s because she listens. Not just to what I am saying with my words, but also to the things I don’t yet have words for. She helps me find them and empowers me to take the necessary actions to be my best self!” – Nikki, Senior Operations Analyst
“I did a coaching session with Olivia when I was struggling with some “imposter syndrome” in a new leadership position. Olivia asked me questions that completely shifted how I was approaching the situation and allowed me to rebuild my confidence after one session.” – Sam, National Anti-Trafficking Team Supervisor
“After an hour with Olivia, I walked away with calm and clarity, confident in my plan to tackle the personal and professional hurdles I was facing. I’ve found that a coaching session is a rare opportunity to dig deep and explore whatever is on your mind, often transforming what may have seemed insurmountable into a more manageable situation. Without hesitation I highly recommend scheduling a session with Olivia for anyone interested in taking time to focus on themselves and achieving your goals.” – Isabel, Senior Marketing Director
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