Wikipedia has this as their start to defining coaching:- “Coaching refers to the activity of a coach in developing the abilities of a coachee. Coaching tends to focus on an existing problem (from which to move away) or a specific outcome that the individual wishes to achieve (move towards). In both cases, the coach aims to stimulate the coachee to uncover innate knowledge so they can achieve a sustainable result. Coaches will normally check that the specific learning can be successfully re-applied by the coachee, to deal with other problems in the future. The structure and methodologies of coaching are very numerous with one unifying feature, coaching approaches are predominantly facilitating in style, that is to say that the coach is mainly asking questions and challenging the coachee to learn from their own resources. The coaching process is underpinned by established trust in the coachee. Coaching is differentiated from therapeutic and counselling disciplines in that the problems and outcomes have contexts which are important in the present and with aims for the future – these do not have emotional aetiology, or baggage, from the past – in other words, the coachee has the resources they need to make reasoned progress at the time that they seek coaching.”
Some of this is good and some isn’t! It is right to keep away from therapy and it is absolutely right that the COACHEE progresses from their own resources. But there are too many definitions and most are unhelpful.
I think life coaching is about a client moving beyond their present limits.
Limits can be practical or emotional or a blend of both.
Most limits relate to beliefs.
Beliefs are the hotchpotch of ideas that can enable or disable us – depends upon postive or negative.
Negative is:- I can’t, shouldn’t, never, not me, too hard, scary etc
Positive is:- I am, let’s do it, when do we start, just do it etc
Lots of us have complex combinations of positive and negative and most of us get by just fine.
BUT we can all do better by a little or a lot. You only do better if you and your coach develop the right trustful relationship where they are their for you and you keep to your promise(s).
A coach is not a commodity, a coach is not someone with a business card that says Life Coach. A real coach is someone who exposes their psyche to truly understand your deep issues and will hold up that patchy mirror that tells you your truth.
Then you do a deal – the truth of this deal is your barometer of progress!
A coach is not just for Christmas; a client is for all the time they call on you as their coach!