I first heard about Life Coaching on an Oprah episode in 2000. She was interviewing Life Coach Cheryl Richardson, author of “Take Time for Your Life” and many other bestselling books. I was immediately hooked. There are so many benefits of life coaching.
When I discovered coaching, I had been working in a medical practice for several years after completing a Masters in Nutrition, a Medical Degree, and residency training in internal medicine and pathology. While my work was gratifying, I wanted to be more in touch with the human aspect and personal lives of my patients. Also, I was reflecting on my own personal journey, having gone through the gruelling training, and thinking about what I wanted in my life. So I took a detour from my medical practice to become a life coach – and a yoga instructor, book author, and speaker. Eventually, it all blended into what I do now as a practicing physician and life coach, specializing in wellness, nutrition, and weight loss.
The History of Life Coaching
Life Coaching has been around since the 1980’s when Thomas Leonard, a financial planner, started advising his clients on how to organize their lives, transform themselves, and achieve their life goals in addition to their financial goals. Recognizing how his clients benefitted and sharing his methods with others, in the 1990’s he founded CoachU for formal training. Today, there are countless Life Coach schools and programs to train coaches, the benefits of Life Coaching are more widely known and sought after, and the profession is growing rapidly.
Life Coaching Training Matters
Life coaching can have enormous benefits to individuals, families, and organizations; however, because the profession requires specific skills in order to be effective, it’s important that Life Coaches are properly trained and that clients hire coaches with recognized training. Universally accepted certification standards or licenses in the Life Coaching profession do not exist, so, for a client, it’s important to rely on the reputation of a training program and to pay attention to their personal experience with a specific coach to know whether the coach is a good fit.
Life Coaching is About Using Your Brain
Life Coaching is not about fixing things or simply getting through a to-do list. It sheds light on “the here and now” and uncovers how someone’s mind works. We have so many thoughts in our brains that we don’t even realize! As Brooke Castillo, founder of The Life Coach School, so clearly teaches, our thoughts, and not our circumstances, determine what our life experience is. Yes, circumstances can determine what our life looks like, but it’s your thoughts about the circumstances that matter the most. Your thoughts determine how you feel, how you feel determines how you act, and how you act determines the results in your life.
Life Coaching in Action
For example, let’s say you’re frustrated with your boss and you believe it’s her fault for not giving you the promotion you deserve. You may feel resentful, avoid her, and not do your best work resulting in the status quo and no promotion. You may not be aware of how much resentment your thoughts are causing you. But what if you learned to notice these unhelpful thoughts and decided instead you’re going to take charge of being promoted, for example, by learning from a colleague or mentor, or doing your own research? From that place, you might feel determined or curious which would make you implement strategies to get promoted and ultimately do a better job at work.
It might be hard, and you’d have to take responsibility for yourself in ways you’re not used to, but doing so would more likely result in a promotion. And if not, perhaps you will take the leap and seek out a better job elsewhere.
Take Back Your Power
In the first scenario, you give away your power to your boss and feel stuck. In the second scenario, you see options and make it happen even if that means taking a job at another company with more responsibility and higher pay.
When our thinking and belief systems are in line with our reality today and we’re clear about what we want, we figure it out. The coach does not tell the client the steps they need to take to get the promotion or whatever goal they’re aiming for. The coach is trained to help the client see how she’s thinking about her situation and what she wants, and then supports the client as she implements strategies to find what will work. This is one of the most powerful benefits of coaching: you begin to trust yourself to know what you need to do, you see what you’re capable of based on your successes, and you allow yourself to dream bigger than what you previously thought possible.
How Hiring A Life Coach Can Help you Realize Your Dreams
Many professionals such as athletes, actors, and music performers work with coaches all the time. Talent and hard work are not enough. We all can push ourselves and feel inspired or supported by relatives, mentors, friends, and even people we read or hear about but don’t personally know. But having someone trained to see us in different ways than we see ourselves, being there to support us as we overcome obstacles, and helping us recognize our growth and progress can keep us going in the right direction to make dreams a reality.
So why not get a coach for the most important person in the world and for what matters most? Yes, I’m talking about you and your life.
Roadblocks Happen & That’s OK Too!
It’s never a straight path to reach a goal. Failure and trial and error are a given. Many people give up when things don’t work out right away or in the way they planned, or if there’s unexpected discomfort. It’s important to allow time, let the path evolve in it’s own way, and expect that uncomfortable emotions such as fear, shame, doubt, and exhaustion will come up as you challenge limiting beliefs and get out of your comfort zone to make changes. The more you move towards your goals, the better you’ll get at tolerating the challenges. And don’t forget: some things will happen faster than you expect, it might turn out better than you originally planned, and there will be exhilaration, joy, confidence, and pride, all of which make it all absolutely worth it. There really are so many benefits of life coaching!
Rewards of Self-Discovery and Adventure Will Last a Lifetime No Matter the Outcome
Whether you want to get out of debt, redirect your professional life, feel more energetic, lose weight, improve your relationships, or get more joy out of being a parent, Life Coaching can help you get there – and you’ll experience rich and lasting self-discovery and adventure along the way, no matter where your journey takes you. I invite you to get started by booking a Life Coaching package now.