The term “Life Coach” seems to be a common household word. Yet, defining exactly what a coach is or does remains elusive; as does understanding who best benefits from coaching. I thought I’d try to shed a little light on this mystery!
When talking to people about coaching, the response is often something like, “Oh that sounds great…I know a few people who could benefit from coaching!” Ugh. This response indicates confusion between coaching and therapy because seldom does someone say, “Wow! I want me some of that!” Recognizing someone else who needs “fixing” via coaching is an indicator the message is still unclear: Coaching is NOT therapy! It is not based on the past; it is looking at what is going on in a person’s life at this time and moving them toward something they desire.
Coaching is personal; not about fixing another! What does that mean?
- Sometimes it means holding a dream and wanting a collaborative partner as strides are made toward achieving that dream.
- Sometimes it means dissecting a workplace conflict and moving into a different perspective.
- Sometimes it means looking at one’s daily life satisfaction and how to bring more joy into the mix.
- Sometimes it means getting clarity around a situation and/or personal responses to the situation.
- Sometimes it means finding balance in a chaotic life.
- Sometimes it means finding a moment to connect with someone who truly listens, hears what is (or isn’t) being expressed, and offers unbiased support.
- Sometimes it means integrating new concepts, challenging beliefs, or finding deeper meaning.
- And sometimes it is nothing more than having a solid block of “me time” to discuss whatever is fresh on your mind.
- It is NEVER about how to change another!
My favorite definition of what I do as a coach is “I help people get clarity on their dreams and traction on their goals.” In other words, where are you now and what is it you want and how can I partner with you to make that happen?
As you see, coaching is beneficial in myriad situations and for just about any one! You don’t need to be “broken” to engage in coaching. In fact, while coaching can work hand-in-hand with therapy, it is not a replacement for therapy. The best clients are those who are on a personal growth path, seeking clarity, expansion, or other positive changes in their life.
Even though I am a coach myself, I have a coach. I thought by sharing the reasons I work with a coach and the greatest benefits I get from coaching, I might open your eyes to how coaching may be beneficial in your life, too.
Top Ten Reasons I Work with a Life Coach
- Because I can get so wrapped up in my own story, i.e. perspective, that a fresh perspective is often the agent to moving me forward.
- Because there is no greater feeling than having the freedom to share anything in a safe, confidential, non-judgmental environment!
- Because I often put the cart before the horse and benefit from a little reality check.
- Because I love sharing my ideas with someone who “gets me” and knows when to be supportive, when I just want to bounce ideas around, and when I’m ready to take action or let go of an idea.
- Because relationships with people can be stressful and my coach can often see when my discomfort is from a weak personal boundary, a conflict with my values or my own set of filters. My coach helps diffuse the stress and helps me identify a new approach to the relationship.
- Because my coach helps me live life in a deeper more meaningful way. Often this means getting out of my head and connecting with my intuition, my body, and my heart.
- Because I am challenged to grow in new ways, experience new things, face fears, question my beliefs, and understand myself better.
- Because my coach tells it to me straight. Conversations are supportive, but not sugar-coated. My coach calls my bluff, tells me when I’m full of it, points out when I’m playing small, and holds me accountable to actions I promise.
- Because it has literally changed me. I am more comfortable with who I am, more confident in my abilities, more willing to push the envelope in all aspects of my life, and no longer seek outside approval. I know my values, my beliefs, my motivators, my passions, and my dreams. I know myself.
- Because she has become a dear friend and I love having a set schedule to connect with her!
I hope that helps clarify what working with a Life Coach is all about. I benefit greatly from my connection with my coach, have worked with clients who have made great strides toward their ideal life, and I highly recommend coaching for anyone looking for a bit of self-growth!
Next time someone invites you to coaching, consider it a gift to yourself! In fact, here’s a bit of unsolicited promotion: If you’d like to give coaching a try, contact my coach, Heidi Courtney, to schedule a coaching session!
Have a great day my friend!