I think everyone can use a life coach at different points in their lives. Good life coaches can assist in ways that psychotherapy, counseling, and consulting cannot. Yet there’s a lot of misinformation, hype, and sometimes deception, about life coaching.
First, I want to explain some common modes of helping us through life.
- Psychotherapists and psychiatrists treat mental health problems. In therapy you learn how better to manage your traumas, moods, feelings, thoughts, and behaviors that are interfering with your daily life. Therapists can also refer you to medical professionals who offer medicines that balance your brain chemistry, if necessary.
- Counselors, according to the American Counseling Association, form “a professional relationship that empowers diverse individuals, families, and groups to accomplish mental health, wellness, education, and career goals.” There’s often an overlap between the work of counselors, and psychotherapists, coaches, and consultants, which can be confusing.
- Consultants provide expert opinions, analysis, and recommendations to organizations or individuals, based on their own expertise. They’re essentially fixers, serving as objective troubleshooters, and providing strategies to prevent problems and improve performance.
- Life Coaches assist you in moving through present professional or personal obstacles into the future you desire. They avoid explanatory “stories” from the past and instead focus on the future. A good coach will keep you focused and motivated, hold you accountable, and celebrate your successes. This is all done in a friendly atmosphere of trust, honesty, and friendship.
Some things you need to consider before hiring a life coach:
Life coaches are NOT therapists. When a client presents a psychological need, a coach ought to refer the client to a competent, licensed therapist for appropriate treatment.
Life coaches are NOT counselors. They elicit solutions and pathways for goals by helping the client to reach their own conclusions and action items.
Life coaches are NOT consultants. Some coaches might have a background in certain fields and can indeed consult. It’s best however for coaches to refer clients to competent consultants if the need arises.
Life coaches do NOT take health insurance. They are paid out of pocket either by individuals or as a contracted vendor for a company’s employee salary package.
Life coaching fees vary dramatically. It’s up to the client to do the math and discover the per-hour rate and whether or not it fits into their budget. Expensive coaching is not necessarily better coaching. Receiving life coaching is usually a short-term investment in one’s own life.
A competent Life coach will help the client to move on as quickly as possible. Stringing along clients is not ethical and neither is rushing the process. Most coaches will ask for a minimum number of sessions to build momentum toward the client’s goals.
Life coaches can work by phone, virtually, or in person. Since life coaches are not licensed by states, as for many other professions such as contractors, therapists, physicians, and lawyers, they are able to serve clients nationally and internationally.
Life coaches DO have ethical and professional standards. Large, international training organizations such as the International Coaching Federation (ICF) or Coaches Training Institute (CTI), have strict professional guidelines for coaches.
Be careful! Many people use the title “Life Coach” without being specifically trained as one. They may have the natural talents and experience necessary, but they should not be using clients as a way of self-training. Life coaching is more than wisdom. There are specific methods that make it effective, which need to be learned through competent coaching organizations. Otherwise you may be paying for a consultant rather than a life coach.
Ready to Experience Life Coaching?
- Perform better by identifying what’s keeping you from onward movement.
- Discover new perspectives on your life you never realized before.
- Clear a new path to career and relationship advancement.
- Join Michael Parise in six coaching sessions that get you the future you’ve always wanted for your life or career.
- It’s all done over the phone in privacy and confidentiality.
Cost: $472.00 for 6 sessions
Twice per month for 3 months