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Q&A – Life Coach Star Cheri Oteri Went Undercover to Prep for Her Part

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Actress Cheri Oteri talks about playing the ever-ebullient Liza on Life Coach. The show is back on air and online Monday, February 15.

Q: How did you research the part of Liza?

A: I was actually very curious about how a person becomes a life coach. I enrolled in these classes online. It took four days, from seven in the evening until eleven. There was an exam, and I got certified.

Q: Does that mean you have a real certificate?

A: Yes, I keep that in my bathroom: “Cheri Oteri, Certified Life Coach.” The classes really did help me come from a place of this professional cheerleader, this helper. It’s not like they have to abide by any rules or boundaries — not that they’re bad people — but they don’t worry about the psychoses of your past. They’re all about your future and obtaining your goals.

Q: Have you had any feedback from other life coaches?

A: Only the ones who took classes with me. I did it a little undercover. Toward the end of the classes, the question was, “What do you want from this?” I got so invested in the people — they were so nice and well intended — that I didn’t want to keep it secret anymore. I said, “Actually I’m doing this for research for a TV show,” and they were all so excited. What I learned after taking this course is that I am not positive enough to be a life coach.

Q: If Liza were your coach, what would you ask her for help on?

A: I would ask her how she stays so positive. That’s always something that’s intrigued me — people who are forever optimistic, no matter what goes on around them. Some people might say there’s something wrong with them, but I say I could live with that. I’m just amazed at Liza and her life. She’s not close with her family, she always seems to have relationship trouble, and she doesn’t have a lot of friends — but she’s a life coach, and that’s what cracks me up.

Q: Do you think Liza has any dream clients?

A: I think she’d be interested in a couple of good-looking men.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you ever got?

A: When a waiter says “hot plate,” he means it.

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