What is Life Coaching?
Life coaching is still considered a relatively new field. While it always existed in some shape and form within other disciplines, it started being established in the 80s and became more popular in the 90s. Generally, people, who work with a life coach, do so in order to make positive changes either in their personal life or in their career.
Life coaching is a partnership between the coach and the coachee in order for the coachee to make improvements in some areas of his/her life. The life coach helps the client by asking open-ended questions, which in many cases, leads to uncovering an underlying factor that can be the root cause of the problem. The life coach also uses certain strategies to help the client overcome the blocks that they may encounter as they move forward.
Another benefit of working with a life coach is that while the process encourages people to come up with solutions, it also helps them with discipline since the life coach will hold the client accountable.
Life coaching is different than consulting in the sense that the coach does not give advice, but encourages the client to come up with the answer which is based on the belief that the answer is within the client, and for lasting results, the solution should not come from outside.
Is life coaching the same as therapy?
I get this question often and the answer is: while there are some overlapping aspects, life coaching is not the same as psychotherapy. What the two disciplines have in common is that similar to a therapist, a life coach creates a sacred place for the client to empty out his/her thoughts and feelings without any judgment while it all remains confidential. However, therapy and coaching are different due to the fact that therapy is mostly focused on treating trauma from the past whereas coaching is focused on the present and achieving certain goals within a defined period of time to build a desirable future.
Here are some of the common specialties in coaching:
Anyone who is interested in making improvements in their life to be healthier, happier, more successful, and to have fulfilling relationships and a life balance can benefit from working with a life coach. Coaching can also be helpful to people who are going through a transition in life and want to start anew; for instance, after the loss of a loved one or a breakup. Equally, life coaching can help people, who wish to be more creative and improve or develop certain skills to excel at work.
It is important to keep in mind that while a life coach can help people overcome blocks, be disciplined, gain a new perspective on life and come up with new goals that they can be excited about; in the end, it is the client’s responsibility to do the work. Projects only come to fruition with consistency and time.