Life Coaching - What It Is, What It Is Not and Why It's Important
The way we think profoundly influences the way we act and the way we feel. Therefore, it can be said that learning to think differently can enable us to act and feel differently. Life Coaching helps clients in every aspect of their lives. Life Coaching program and/or relationship can assist you greatly in bringing about greater personal stability, clearer life direction and an improved sense of fulfillment in your life.
Life Coaching is a method of directing, instructing and training a person or group of people, with the aim to achieve specific goals or develop specific skills. Life Coaching is there to help a person realize their potential and pursue their goals and dreams. It involves looking at your present lifestyle and working out what needs to be changed in it in order to make you a happier and more fulfilled person. This is done through the use of a holistic approach that includes business, career, health, social relationships, spirituality, wealth and worth in contribution.
People often seek Life Coaching for help:
- Dealing with troublesome emotions
- Overcoming procrastination and poor time management
- Becoming more assertive
- Increasing self-awareness
- Finding spirituality and life purpose
- Increasing the effectiveness of social and relationship skills
- Achieving their potential and increasing problem solving abilities
- Learning how they can contribute their unique gifts to society
- Identifying and using their personal strengths to overcome their weaknesses
- Making better decisions
Life Coaches use multiple methods that will help clients with the process of setting and reaching goals. The relationship is based on the client’s expressed interests, goals and objectives. Typically, it involves regularly scheduled weekly communication where a Life Coach guides you in making a full lifestyle and career assessment, prompts you to answer pertinent questions about what you want in life and challenges you to set and work towards your chosen goals.
Life Coaching emphasizes that sustained effort and commitment are required for a successful outcome to your life challenges and difficulties. It’s about hard work and daily practice. Coaching is not counselling, therapy or consulting. Coaching is a way of supporting others in their quest to have what they really want in their lives. That may be a specific goal or simply a lifestyle they want to create. A coach provides a place for clients to be held accountable to themselves. Together they evolve and modify the plan to best suit the client’s needs and environmental relationships. Coaches often act as human mirrors for clients by sharing outside, personal and unbiased perspectives.
The Coach may offer tips and observations along the way but ultimately the work has to be done by the client. This is why advice is not given. A coach’s strength lies in allowing their clients to find the answers for themselves. A coach may also use inquiry, reflection, requests and discussion to help clients develop strategies, identify personal, professional, relationship goals or a combination of all 3, and action plans intended to aid in the achievement of those goals.
Hiring a Life Coach in today’s difficult economic times can prove to be fairly affordable if you are able to find the right person, program and/or process. This relationship should be looked at as an investment. This investment has the potential to last over the course of your entire life and benefit every aspect of it in a positive way. Think about it: Do you feel that there needs to be some change in your life and you are not entirely sure of what you can do to bring it about? Is the level of stress you experience making you wonder if you can take any more of your present life? Are you not entirely satisfied with your present lifestyle? Questions like these act as an implied awareness that our life is in some way inadequate or could be improved. However, for many in this situation, nothing is done about trying to make things permanently different. Maybe we just didn’t know where or how to begin. Perhaps we just kept pushing through, hoping that, in time, things would eventually get better.
Ask yourself, have you designed your life the way you want? If your deepest desires were fulfilled, how would your life change? If you’ve ever said to yourself, I need to sort out my life… I need to make some changes…. Life Coaching can help you learn how to tackle those questions and decrease the amount of self-defeating thinking and behaviors you may be having or showing while replacing them with a healthy, proactive and problem solving outlook.
Career Coaching - Finding a Professional to Help You Find Your Fulfilling Career
What is Career Coaching?
Career Coaching is a mutually beneficial relationship between a career services oriented professional and a person in the workforce seeking change. It is a private and personal, 1:1 relationship and like any good relationship, you will get out what you put in. It is also discovery process of investigating personal and professional skills, values, motives, strengths, wants, and needs to find a career that is personally and financially satisfying. The goal is to support people in making informed decisions about their career development and trajectory, as well as insuring the tools being used (résumés, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles) are as good as they can be in order to create and increase the clients competitive advantage.
The coach’s responsibility is to:
- Encourage self-discovery
- Identify and close skill gaps
- Introduce solutions and strategies
- Hold you responsible and accountable
- Assess your current skills, experience and requirements
- Explore your career options and make a clear, realistic career action plan
Is Career Coaching right for me?
Of course career coaching is a great choice. Many people don’t know what they want to do but know what they don’t want to do; or they’re doing exactly what they want but it’s not progressing how they’d like. Have you ever said:
- “I hate my job, but I don’t know what else I can do!”
- “I have no idea what I can do with the skills I have”
- “I need help discovering what I want to do (my passion) and I need help making it my reality.”
It used to be thought that only executives used coaches to help their careers but things have changed now that Career Coaching has expanded its reach and has become more affordable. Career Coaching is useful for every career stage, starting as soon as high school graduation. Fact is, successful people invest in themselves.
Other reasons a Career Coach may be right for you:
- You were recently let go
- Looking to make a career change or career transition
- You’re interested in working remotely or as a consultant
- You’d like to find a career that better aligns with your values
- You want to make a lifestyle change/Schedule change/Increase work-life balance
- You’re re-joining the workforce after some time off and are not sure how to bridge the gap
- You’re considering exiting the workforce but want to see if there are some options out there
How can a career coach help me?
Coaches help with everything from finding the right job to advancing in the field you’re already in all the way to helping you find a completely new career. Coaches help you gain or regain career confidence and provide insight, encouragement and inspiration. Achieving your career goals can lead to positive changes in all areas of your life. Coaching empowers and educates you on how to take charge of your career and achieve the success you’re seeking.
The coaching relationship also helps clients decrease the amount of anxiety, fear, vulnerability and negative emotions they may be experiencing so that they can better understand how these factors may be keeping them from achieving what they are seeking in their careers.
Career Coaches also help in these ways:
- Change your career direction
- Realign your working life and personal priorities
- Overcome a feeling of being “stuck” career-wise
- Teach you how to ace a job interview and get an offer
- Explore your career options and find a career that you love
- Strategies to help you position yourself for future opportunities
- Help you move into a new external role and/or earn a promotion
- Work with you on salary negotiations and landing a higher paying job
What are the most common misconceptions about career coaching?
My top three? That a great resume is all you need to conduct an effective job search. It’s the Career Coaches job to find you a job. That this is a benefit only relationship. The relationship between the Career Coach and the client is educational. You are paying to be taught how to be successful in your job search and career development.
Finding a Good Career Coach
There are many Career Coaches, but how do you find the best one for you?
- Good reputation
- The coach’s background
- Personally resonates with you
- Experience and specialization(s)
- You feel comfortable and confident talking to them
- Website, recommendations, testimonials and overall online presence
- Complementary work. Are they leaders? Do they write, speak, train, or facilitate workshops?