Life Coach or Life Coaching seems to be somewhat of a mystery on the Internet. There are many schools to give training, but unlike my training as a Social Worker and Counselor, a Life Coach is not supervised by an experienced Life Coach while they are practicing in the field. Field experience under the guidance and support of a Life Coach Supervisor is essential for anyone performer excellent Mental Health or Personal Training services. Essential.
What Is A Life Coach?
I have spent a significant chunk of time reading articles, blogs and ebooks online trying to find helpful and non-biased definitions of what a Life Coach is and does, or what Life Coaching isn’t. Rather than trying to define something that is incredibly broad in its limits, I am going to share with you what it means to me.
I am trained as a Social Worker and Counselor, specifically, Non-Traditional Counseling with youth, adults, couples and families that have landed somewhere different from where they planned. I have worked in various capacities since 1993 serving those wanting/needing/forced into getting outside support and/or guidance. I am not a Therapist nor have I received training or education to practice as one. I may have enough professional experience and skills, but not the formal education or credentials. There are some who might challenge whether I am a trained Counselor, since I don’t have the legal credentials for that either. I am certain that few Counselors have the experience and training that I have, but that is not the issues when it comes to insurance companies unfortunately.
I can support your innate need to be who you sense that you are supposed to be and hold your hand while you take the steps to do so. I can help you discern who you are, if that is a question you are struggling with. I can look you in the eye and tell you what you need to hear, if that is what you need to get motivated to make the necessary shifts in your life or environment to begin to show the potential you know you have. Most of all, I will let you know when you are full of “it” and when you are speaking Truth. I will not let your ego run your life during or time together. I won’t stand for it. Hopefully, you won’t either when offered the choice. The ego can be insidious in its need for power and control when not monitored.
“Michael has the ability to strip through layers of confusion and distortion to see into the heart and core of almost any matter. I don’t know many people who are able to be so gently respectful, playful, and fierce all at once. He holds these elements in balance while standing firmly and unshakably in his own truth, and he inspires the same in others.”E
What’s The Difference Between A Life Coach, Counselor or Therapist?
To make matters easier for you, I am going to place Counselors and Therapists together for this discussion, although there are definitely distinctions between them. When I think about a Counselor, I think of someone who is focused on supporting you in your journey through your life experiences; family, cultural and social programing towards a brighter future. Counselors and Therapists often work with clients experiencing a continuum of Mental Health issues ranging from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder to Addictions to Schizophrenia to relationships and dating. The extensive training and education that most Counselors receive has a Counselor ready to support your need for good health and care, and direction for you to get there. My sense of Counseling and Therapy is wider than that of what most Life Coaches offer. I think few Life Coaches are trained, experienced and ready to work with you on serious mental health issues and crisis intervention; there are exceptions but that is my sense.
When I think about Life Coaching, or Life Coaches, my sense of Life Coaching is geared towards working from this moment forward, which may or mot or not include working through childhood, traumatic or life-changing experiences leading you to today. Again, this is a broad generalization and realize there are going to be many Life Coaches who are well-trained and experienced working with these kinds of personal obstacles to wellbeing. Life Coaches typically work with you for a somewhat brief period to meet your goals and intentions or seeking support and guidance from a professional.
The confusion seems to be around the perception that Therapists and Counselors can’t do what Life Coaches do and Life Coaches can’t do what Therapists and Counselors can do. I think there would be more overlap than expected if we were able to create a Venn Diagram of where they intersect.
Why Do Counselors, Therapists and Life Coaches Disagree?
Most trained professionals are taught that what they do is specialized and somewhat unique and exclusive. It is a self-serving approach that feeds its own belief systems. A doctor that is trained that the only treatment for cancer is chemotherapy and radiation will cling tightly to that premise, otherwise it would challenge their past and present failures. A police officer that believes that all ________ are criminals (fill in the blank yourself) will rarely see them as innocent. You get the idea, your smart and know exactly what I am referring to.
Other Definitions & Benefits of Life Coaching
“Benefits of life coaching for teenagers can include an increase in self-esteem and confidence. Teens with a direction for their future that they are excited about are also less likely to want to stray from it by becoming involved in negative behaviors that may ruin their chances of getting the life they want. Life coaches typically help clients realize their life purpose and values, and discovering these may provide teenagers with a clear sense of self-awareness. Learning effective goal-setting strategies during life coaching for teenagers is likely to benefit adolescents for their whole lives.”Wisegeek.com
“Just about everyone has a vision of his or her ideal life. Maybe you’ve always dreamed of becoming a successful writer, musician, or corporate executive. Yet your vision hasn’t quite made the leap from your mind to reality. That’s where a life coach steps in. Life coaches provide the incentive and direction their clients need to improve their careers, relationships, and lives. They help clients to: hone in on their skills and ambitions, refocus their life’s goals and overcome obstacles that stand in the way of achieving goals.”WebMD
The definition of a life coach is an individual who provides counseling and encouragement to help clients with career and personal matters to maximize their potential and to live their life in the way they desire. A person you hire for advice and encouragement on maximizing your career and personal life is an example of a life coach. An example of a life coach is a person who works with you to develop strategies to accomplish your goals in life.LoveToKnow Corp
Providence Life Coaching & Reiki Counseling Location and Rates
I work out of Providence Zen Center in Cumberland, RI. I am not a licensed counselor in Rhode Island, therefore, I do not accept insurance. I offer a sliding scale fee ($60-$120) based on your own discernment of need. I accept cash, checks, Visa, Master Card, Discover, American Express and Pay Pal.
I invite you to contact me to see if we are a good fit to work together.