For some years now I have been in the coaching community. And lately, I noticed a tendency of making a coach look like someone who is just after someone’s money. Someone who has been to 5 hours course and pretends to know it all. Someone who wanted to be a psychologist but did not make it. Coaches are popping everywhere like mushrooms after the rain and you think, why on earth would I invest in one?
This article is not about the “mushrooms after the rain”, but about the coaches that did the work, spent the hours, read the books, tried the exercises, implemented teachings in their life and made it happen for them, so now they want to share it with the world in hope that someone´s life will be better because of their knowledge and experiences.
At least this is what I was and am aiming for when working as a Life-design Coach. My mission is to Positively Impact Your life, by sharing my knowledge, wisdom, personal experiences, and transformations.
So this article is for those, who are skeptical about Life Coaching, who do not know what it is, or who want to get a coach but do not know how the coach could help. It is also for those who do not know if they should get a coach or go to therapy, and for those who need a last push to select the right coach for the right reasons. So I guess what I am saying is that this is for everyone in search of more knowledge around life coaching, life coaches, and how to introduce coaching into their lives.
I suggest you read every line, so you do not miss important stuff. You never know where the gold is hidden.
People tend to stereotype that if you get a coach you are weak, you are not capable of getting your life together. But that is far from the truth. Opposite, you are actually the one getting your life together and building your life according to your vision with the help of a great coach. Anyone who ever was successful at anything had a mentor, coach, or teacher who pushed them beyond their comfort zone.
Now that I am in this industry and I proudly call myself Life-design Coach, I see people´s looks when I say what I do. It feels like they think I am scamming them or something. I also notice that people sometimes expect the coach to fix them, to tell them what to do and how, to change them, to show the way, to have all the answers, but this is not what coaches do. This is not how we work, and this is not our goal.
Read on if you want to know what coaching is all about, what a professional coach does, and how to select one and why.
First of all, life coaching is about people finding their own answers, not searching outside of themselves for solutions. Coaching is a very powerful relationship for people making important changes in life. It is an ongoing relationship, which focuses on clients taking action toward the realization of their visions, goals, desires, and dreams.
Life coaches help design the future, not to come over the past. In sessions, we do not focus on understanding the past and how to get over it, but we question present and future — what can I do today to make life better tomorrow? Through typically long term relationship coaches help clients in creating visions and goals for all aspects of their lives and multiple strategies to support the achievement of these goals. The solution lies within the client and the coach asks the questions to help the client to find these solutions. So in short, coaching is about creating your life vision and plan how to make the vision reality. It is about becoming more and having the support on the way to a better, more fulfilled life.
Now you might say, that you can do it all alone. You can make a clear vision, define goals and strategies and make it all happen. I say — yes, you can! But not everyone can. Some of us need guidance and support, accountability and different view of the situations, and a little motivation or pep talk when tough days hit. And they will.
A good coach can assist in discovering what you really want in life and help you to unlock your brilliance to achieve it. As coaching covers all aspects of life, you can work on any topic with your coach. It can also happen, that if there is a deep-routed issue or challenge, the life coach can recommend a very niched coach. Like if you have issues about relationships, a life coach can refer you to a relationship coach to get deeper coaching on this topic.
Coaches provide structure, support, and feedback. Through the coaching process, you achieve goals faster and with more ease than would be possible alone.
I have listed few points on what a coach does and how coaching can be beneficial. Any of those reasons are appealing to you?
Now that you know what coach can help you with how do you select the good one? And who a good coach is? First of all, I believe, that the most important thing is the chemistry between the coach and the client. If there is no “good vibe” it will be very difficult to build a rapport and this is so important in coaching. So pick the coach you feel great around, you have a good connection with because you will have to open up and create mutual trust. Investigate coaches’ social media profiles, clients‘ testimonials, and have a discovery call before signing to work together. It takes only a few minutes to know if you match or not.
As you can see Life Coaching covers so many different areas and can help you in building a richer life. But Life Coaching cannot and does not deal with many issues as well, which then calls for therapy. Therapy is past-focused and very much inner world-oriented. It asks why questions, while coaching asks how questions. Therapy is about fixing and Life Coaching is about creating.
I have prepared a short table to outline the differences between coaching, therapy, and mentoring. So it is easier to decide who to choose when the need occurs. Besides mentoring, therapy, and coaching there is also consultancy and counseling. But I decided to focus mostly on differences between therapy and coaching as these most often get mixed up.
Focus: Past focus, relieving pain, symptoms.
Orientation: process, feelings, inner world.
Relationship: Patient — therapist, very professional.
The client wants to move away from pain.
Responsibility: The therapist is responsible for the outcome.
Area: Deals with one area.
Focus: Present and future., achieving goals, creating fulfillment, vision, richer life.
Orientation: outcome, action, inner to the outer world.
Relationship: Equal relationship; Sessions very open, friendly, not formal.
Goal: Create, collaborate, achieve goals.
The client wants to move towards goals.
Responsibility: The client is responsible for the results.
Area: The focus is on the whole life not only one part unless you reach out to a niched specialist (relationship coaching, stress and anxiety coaching, etc).
Expert teaching someone to do what he/she does.
Older and wiser.
No emotional involvement.
Provides guidance and answers questions.
Despite all the differences between coaching and therapy, there are also similarities. Both activities aim to increase the life quality. For me, this is the most important aspect of both types of relationships — to help you to improve your life. There are also other similarities like, the client wants to change and seeks out help. The relationship between coach or therapist and client is always confidential and dialogue is at the core. Usually, it is paid service as when you pay you pay attention and put more effort to change. The coach and therapist are highly professional and the most valuable skill is active listening. The relationship between therapist or coach and client is ongoing and can last for many months.
I strongly believe that if you want to reach the next level of your life, understand yourself better, build a richer life, it is absolutely just a plus to get a coach. Coaches recognize the brilliance of each client and their personal power to discover their own solutions when provided with support, accountability, and unconditional positive regard.
We think by talking and the coach listens. Listening can transform people. Want to transform your life faster, easier, with support and accountability — get a coach.