What is Life Coaching?

So often when I tell people what I do they ask me “What is life coaching?”  For many putting the label of coaching on what I do somehow causes confusion.

All of us, at some point in our life, has had a coach.  That person may not have had the official title of “coach” but they served in that role for us.

It may have been an older brother or sister who gave us some crucial advice at a point in our life when we needed to hear just those particular words.

Or perhaps it was a teacher who helped us understand something better than we had been able to achieve on our own.

Life Coach ShiningIn most parts of our lives we are frequently categorizing things and people; placing them into the little “sections” we have defined in our brain like good or bad, smart or dumb, loving or self-centered, and the list goes on.  But there’s no reason to be confused by the term “life coach” and I believe, if you look inside yourself, you probably could explain what I do very easily.

A life coach is someone who:

  • Has already passed through situations you’re just starting experience;
  • Has techniques, skills and knowledge that you may not yet have;
  • Is able to step back and see the “bigger picture” without bias, blinders, or paradigms that may hinder the individual;
  • Knows how to help each unique individual find, develop and utilize his or her innate abilities to their full potential;
  • “Pushes” the individual to do or be more than he or she thought was possible.

That is essentially what I do.  I use a variety of techniques to identify key aspects about you, who you are and where you’re trying to go in your life.  I then help you develop a plan to focus your energy and talents in the direction best suited for your unique life journey.  After all, regardless of how you define success, short and long term goal planning are key parts of achieving it.

Sound simple?  Well it can be, however, just as with any other “sport”, the “game of life” can take much practice before the “athlete” is ready to move from the bench to the playing field.  I tell clients that the minimum commitment they should be willing to make is around 6 months; it is a process and a journey and there is no shortcut to lasting results.

Interestingly though many people who receive coaching decide to continue regular coaching sessions after the 6 month period is over.  Why?  As you might expect, after experiencing successful, permanent changes in their lives in that one area where they’ve received coaching, they want to develop, grow and improve in other areas of their lives as well…and who can blame them!

One thing I did forget to mention in the earlier list:  A good coach knows his limitations.

If you have a particular issue that I know I’m not best suited to help you improve, I will tell you but I’ll try to help you find someone who can.  In other words, there’s no sense in me trying to coach you in “basketball” when my expertise is in “soccer” but I will do everything I can to get you in touch with good basketball coach.

We all have our own, unique journey and we have to follow our own path the best way we know how.  Getting some pointers along the way from folks who have already walked a similar way just makes pretty good sense.