Life coaching is now becoming very popular, making it a topic for scrutiny amongst those who do not consider it a genuine profession. In this episode, Christy Whitman addresses some of the most common misconceptions about what it means to be a life coach. She highlights the great things it does at helping people move from where they currently are to where they would like to be. Get into this episode and see the beauty of the role of a life coach that is unlike any other.
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Quantum Success Coach: What Does It Mean To Be A Life Coach? by Christy Whitman
When someone is first introduced to the term professional life coach, they typically have a lot of questions and some misconceptions of what that means. Most of us are only accustomed to applying the word coach to professional sports teams, Olympic athletes. At first glance, it can be hard to understand what role a coach can play in our average everyday lives. In this segment, I’m going to answer some of those questions and address some of the most common misconceptions about what it means to be a life coach. In my many years of being a master coach and almost several years experienced certifying coaches, I’ve seen men and women who had incredible coaching potential put the brakes on entering into this field because of their unanswered questions and misconceptions. I’ve also seen people who would benefit profoundly from having a life coach pass on the opportunity to work with one because they didn’t understand how valuable the process can be and how transformational the experience has been for so many people. Let’s dive right in and address some of the most common questions that people have about what it means to be a life coach.
It’s been said that in life, the only thing constant is change. As we move through the various phases of our lives, every one of us will encounter milestones, setbacks, opportunities and challenges that require us to change our approach or modify our strategies or even shift our perspective. How we respond to the changes that life inevitably brings our way is the single most important factor in determining our level of happiness, enjoyment and success. How we respond to the changes that life brings our way is the single most important factor in determining our level of happiness, enjoyment and success. Where there are many different styles of life coaching, at the basis of all of them is the intention to offer resources and support to guide people through transitional phases in their lives and teach them how to use those times of adversity as a catalyst towards realizing even greater levels of fulfillment. Simply put, a life coach provides a sounding board, a perspective and guidance to help their clients cooperate with and thrive in the face of life’s inevitable challenges.
Life coaching is about helping another person move from where they currently are to where they would like to be whether it’s in relation to their finances, their career, their personal relationships or even the degree of physical vitality that they’re experiencing. Coaches can help clients get clear on what they want to achieve in their lives and to move forward towards those desires. The focus of the coaching relationship is on moving forward, not justifying, rationalizing or rehashing the past. People hire coaches at every stage of their lives whether they’re making a career transition, starting a new business, re-evaluating choices, clarifying values or simply seeking to create more harmony in their personal or professional relationships. People also hire coaches when they’re looking for someone to guide them to realize personal goals as well, such as losing weight or even adopting a healthier lifestyle.
A recap, a life coach can help you get crystal clear about what you want in key aspects of your life, uncover what’s holding you back from achieving your visions and dreams, support you in taking action steps to achieve your vision by holding you accountable. Now that we’ve talked about what it means to be a life coach and what the coaching process can provide, it’s also important to distinguish two things that a life coach is not. First of all, a life coach is not a therapist. Second, a life coach is not a friend. Coaches focus solely on the future. “I’m moving you from where you are now to where you want to be,” whereas the role of a therapist is to help you deal with past issues and problems.How we respond to changes life brings our way is the most important factor in determining our level of happiness, enjoyment, and success. Click To Tweet
Certainly, a life coach may suggest new ideas or potential action steps for their clients to consider, but their primary role is to listen well, to ask questions that help their clients discover their own wisdom and their own path. To support them in aligning their thoughts, their beliefs, their attitude and actions with who and what they want to become. In other words, they are not advice-givers. Also, it’s important not to confuse the role of a life coach with that of a friend that we may seek out to vent about our problems. Coaches are professionals, not unlike physicians, attorneys or psychologists who are trained in a particular skillset which they utilize to empower clients to find solutions to the challenges they face, which of these skills that they apply is determined by each unique client and situation. In the same way, there will be times when a coach serves as a consultant and other times as a cheerleader. No matter what role they take, it’s always with the intention of helping clients to move more clearly and define their desires, recognize what’s holding them back and move forward with greater momentum and confidence.