- 01. What Type of Person Needs a Life Coach?
- 02. What Are the Duties of a Life Coach?
- 03. What Are the Advantages of Life Coaching?
- 04. What Are the Disadvantages of Life Coaching?
- 05. What Should I Expect from a Life Coaching Session?
- 06. What Is the Difference Between a Life Coach and a Therapist?
- 07. What Is a Life Coach not Allowed to Do?
- 08. Is a Life Coach Worth It?
It can be quite complicated to pin down exactly what life coaches do. That isn't to say that they don't do anything but rather that life is complicated so there are a lot of different ways in which they can help.
However, it's also very important to know exactly what kinds of things they do so that you know what kinds of things they shouldn't be doing and whether or not these are a cause for concern. Like any other line of work, life coaching isn't free from bad actors or people who over-promise and under-deliver.
Let's see what kind of people can get help through life coaching, what a life coach's duties should involve, the advantages and disadvantages of life coaching, and the kinds of things that life coaches definitely shouldn't be doing.
What Type of Person Needs a Life Coach?
In general, anybody can benefit from life coaching, but their role specifically helps those who are either struggling to manage their work-life balance or those who are at a crossroads in their career.
If you feel that your career is stagnating and you're out of ideas on how to move forward, life coaching can be useful for evaluating your career, setting achievable goals, and working toward what you want out of your career.
Similarly, if you're finding work difficult or finding that your career is harming your personal life and relationships, or just getting in the way, life coaching can help you find a better balance or give you the tools and strategies to better manage your work-life balance.
If you're finding life stressful and difficult, life coaching can also help. However, stress and anxiety should be first dealt with using a therapist or counselor (more on that later) and while life coaching can help with these, it shouldn't be the only way you deal with stress.
What Are the Duties of a Life Coach?
Much in the same way that coaches teach athletes how to prepare for their sport through training sessions, working on technique, and even planning their nutrition and diet, a life coach's goal is to give their clients the strategies and techniques to better manage their life.
Beyond that, they should be expected to listen without judgment to better evaluate their clients' goals and ambitions.
Admittedly, not everyone will know exactly what their goals are, which is why life coaches need to be excellent listeners. After all, life coaching focuses mainly on setting life goals and achieving them. This means that your life coach's duties include establishing goals, creating plans to achieve these goals, teaching clients approaches to achieve said goals, and, most importantly, helping them achieve their goals.
What Are the Advantages of Life Coaching?
Life coaching comes with several advantages. The main advantage is that it can help people find more direction by helping them to come up with plans and strategies for achieving their goals.
Like tidying a really messy room, it can seem really daunting at first and you mightn't know where to start. The same can be true with life coaching. It can be difficult to see where to start and life coaching can help you pick which corner of your "room" to start with.
Life coaching is really useful because it can be really difficult to come up with clear and manageable goals for your career or personal life.
Life coaching is great for your motivation, too. When your motivation starts to wane, it can be really helpful to have somebody there whose main goal is to ensure that you achieve yours.
Naturally, friends and family or a support network can also help you, but you should also remember that everybody else also has their own lives to be getting on with and aren't there solely to help you with your life goals!
What Are the Disadvantages of Life Coaching?
The key disadvantages of life coaching are the expectations clients have and the promises that certain life coaches make. Life coaching can be an excellent way to set yourself clear goals, work out how to achieve them, and achieve them. It isn't some sort of miracle cure for everything you don't like about your life.
The biggest issue with life coaching is the misconceptions around it. It's neither hokum nor a one-size-fits-all solution that will turn you into a millionaire overnight. Life coaching can help, but you need to temper your expectations. A good life coach will help you with achievable and manageable goals and won't promise you the moon!
What Should I Expect from a Life Coaching Session?
Life coaching sessions should be an open dialog between you and your life coach. They'll want to hear what your ambitions are and then work with you to set realistic and achievable goals.
From there, they'll work with you on improving how you react to and deal with certain situations to provide you with the tools to stay motivated as you set out to achieve your goals.
They'll also be there to help you stay motivated when you're unable to achieve certain goals or need to readjust your goals.
Life coaching sessions normally have four main parts: preparation, analysis, coaching, and action. You need to prepare for each life coaching session. Even if you haven't written anything down, you'll likely have been told to think about things that you would like to talk about in the session.
From there, you and your coach will explore your ideas and discuss them. This part is likely to be an open dialog with the coach.
Your coach will then do their “coaching”. This is where they'll teach you techniques, approaches, etc. to help you achieve your goals.
Finally, it's time for action. Between this session and your next session, you'll be given things to do to help you on your way to achieving your goals.
How often you have a life coaching session is something that you and your life coach should work out together.
What Is the Difference Between a Life Coach and a Therapist?
A lot of life coaching and therapy sound like the same thing and that's because there's a lot of overlap between the two roles.
However, a life coach is not a therapist and clinical mental health issues should always be taken to mental health professionals. Life coaches don't and shouldn't offer clinical mental health advice.
Naturally, your mental health can improve with life coaching in the same way that exercise and diet can also improve your mental health. The better life you lead, the better your mental health tends to be.
A life coach is not a licensed medical professional and even though there are life coaches with backgrounds in therapy and counseling, they're not acting as healthcare professionals when you see them as life coaches.
This is a hugely important thing to keep in mind, especially when deciding whether or not life coaching is right for you. If you're looking for life coaches to solve mental health issues, you're looking in the wrong place. Always seek help from mental healthcare professionals first!
What Is a Life Coach not Allowed to Do?
As we've made it clear that life coaches are not healthcare professionals, they cannot charge their services to your health insurance or act as healthcare professionals in any capacity.
This also means that they shouldn't provide any form of medical advice or mental health advice in a medical capacity. Naturally, they can give you some advice to make you feel better in the same way that friends and family members can, but you have to remember that their advice is not that of a trained and licensed mental health professional.
While they're technically “allowed” to offer any advice that they want to, you always have to remember who they are and what their qualifications are. As always, be wary of any life coaches offering advice that seems out of place.
Is a Life Coach Worth It?
If you're looking to better manage your life and struggle to set achievable goals, then life coaching is absolutely worth it. Life coaching is at its best with people who know exactly what life coaches can and can't do.
If you're looking to completely turn your life around with lofty goals, then you'll only be disappointed. If you're looking to make small but positive changes in your life that ultimately lead to you achieving more of your personal and professional goals, life coaching is a great idea.
The important thing is that you look for consummate professionals who under-promise and over-deliver, who take their role as a life coach seriously, and who aren't acting like they can work miracles for their customers.
Fortunately, there are plenty of sites and platforms (just like ours!) where you can compare life coaches, see what their other clients have to say about them, and separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to life coaching!
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