People have been asking what coaching is all about lately. How is it different from therapy, or counselling? This month’s post answers those questions.
The primary difference between coaching, therapy, and counselling is that coaching is focused on tangible results. At the beginning of your coaching relationship you will spend time exploring what you want to change. From there you’ll look at what’s in the way and come up with ways to tackle each obstacle.
You will have “homework” between coaching sessions. You are in charge of your results. Your coach is a guide. You will take away tools, or ideas, that you can use on your own. You’ll be able to manage your life better. By the time your coaching program is complete there should be significant progress towards the goals you set at the beginning. At its best coaching is about empowerment.
Coaches will usually suggest working with you for a set period of time. You will lay out what you would like to accomplish and set realistic, measurable goals. This helps track your progress and allows you both to know that you’ve succeeded. You’ll have a framework to understand the investment in time, and money, that you’re making.
The most common concern about coaches is the lack of certification. There are many coaching programs out there. There are also an alarming number of self-appointed “certifying bodies” laying claims to coaching as a profession. In the absence of an independent, government, certifying body all of it is meaningless.
Even government certification can’t ensure that every certified coach will be really great at what they do. Even a talented coach, therapist, or counsellor may not be the right fit for you.
How do you go about finding a coach? Your prospective coach should be able to help you understand how they work, the techniques they might use, and provide references. Make sure you get answers to questions like : does how they work fit with what you’re looking for; do they have an approach that you find appealing; is their personality right for you? Make sure you get your questions answered before you commit to a long-term relationship.
Read the testimonials on their website. Do their existing clients resonate with you? Take advantage of free introductory audios, or seminars. Many coaches offer and introductory session at a discounted rate. That is a great way to experience them one on one.
Be wary of coaches who aren’t willing to work with you in some way before they sign you up. You will be working very closely with, and confiding in your coach. You need to trust them and be comfortable to be successful.
Look for a coach that has structured their work into flexible coaching programs. Programs will give you a set number of sessions, a time frame, and additional ways to interact with your coach between sessions. It is a great way to control your costs , and create positive pressure to to produce results.
If you’re looking for a results oriented, flexible, approach to getting what you want out of life then coaching might be right for you. If you’d like to check me out as a coach please go to www.getnakedguru.com. Once you sign up you’ll get instant access to my complimentary audio “Get Naked: The Gay Man’s Guide to Happiness”, as well as the opportunity to sign up for one of my free Get Naked tele-seminars, or a one on one introductory coaching call. You’ll have an opportunity to interact with me live so that you can figure out if we’re the perfect fit.