For your very best
Where it starts
Are you stuck? Are you underachieving?
You know how sometimes you get stuck, and you can’t work out how to proceed. But when you explain the problem to a trusted friend, you suddenly realise the solution without your friend giving you any input?
This is more than mere serendipity. Your mind has hidden depths and wisdom. You often know more than you realise. The trick is often how to access that inner self, to draw out the solutions that are hiding inside you.
This is exactly what life coaching is designed to do.
The generic term “life coaching” also includes speciality areas such as “executive coaching.”
History of life coaching
… in a nutshell
In the 1970’s, Tim Gallwey discovered by chance that sometimes expert knowledge gets in the way. A school was teaching golf and tennis. Due to a twist of circumstances, a tennis coach was assigned to a golfer, and a golf coach to a tennis player. In both cases, the players made excellent progress despite the coaches knowing little about the game.
It turned out that the coaches had asked questions in a way that revealed the players’ innate wisdom, and allowed them to progress quickly at their speed in their personal way.
This was soon expanded beyond sports into personal life issues — this is where the name “life coaching” came from! It further expanded into other areas such as executive coaching.
Life coaching has since been extensively researched, developed and improved, and is used by professionals and executives as well as sports players and people just wanting to improve their personal lives.
Like a counsellor, a life coach has been taught to actively listen, be non-judgemental, and avoid having an “agenda”. Indeed, some life coaches go on to train as counsellors, and vice versa!
These days, many mentors who are untrained in coaching call themselves Coaches, because the life coaching field is unregulated. There’s nothing wrong with this, although it can make things confusing! But, it’s always worth remembering where the term came from, and, if you specifically want a life coach rather than a mentor, asking if the person has had training at a life coaching school.
The generic term “life coaching” also includes speciality areas such as “executive coaching” and “sports coaching”. They are all based on the same science and skills, and behave virtually identically.
Life coaching compared to other skills
Life coaching is often compared to mentoring or therapy, but they are not the same. Mentoring teaches and guides; therapy works at helping you with emotional issues. Life coaching instead draws on your inner wisdom to find practical solutions to work and life.
There is some overlap. A mentor will often use coaching skills. So will a therapist. A life coach might also use mentoring or therapy where necessary. Life coaching on its own can sometimes be hugely therapeutic in its own right. They all coexist nicely.
Life coaching on its own can sometimes be hugely therapeutic in its own right.
What is life coaching good for?
The presumption behind coaching is that you are not broken. You are not damaged. You are just lacking insight into your problems.
In other words, you have the power. This is the assumption that life coaching makes. You have the power to change whatever you need or want to change, and all you need is to access your inner wisdom.
Your life coach starts by asking about you and your situation. You will go through one or more tasks to identify problem areas, and prioritise them; and through good areas where you want to keep things the same or maybe improve them further.
Once these are identified, you agree on the topmost priority, and start to work on that.
The life coach guides you to understand your own problem both in depth and with a greater perspective, and leads you to find the solutions built into your own innate wisdom. The wonderful thing about this is that you design your solutions in a way that matches your circumstances and your character perfectly, which gives you great motivation and understanding.
The goal of life coaching is highly practical. Your solutions are goal-based with manageable, targeted actions that you can do each week.
Life coaching typically takes 12 weeks, although this can differ. Each week, you and your coach explore what worked and what didn’t — and why — and adjust the session to take these results into account. It’s a process of continual action, improvement and discovery.
We know that every person is unique with their own unique circumstances. A solution that works perfectly for one person might be a poor solution for someone else. That’s why people do better with solutions that are tailored to their personal character and their own life situation. Life coaching helps to give you exactly this.
Life coaching is a huge help for people who are stuck and don’t know how to proceed.
So, if you feel that you are holding yourself back, or achieving less than you are capable of, call me to discuss your unique needs.