You may have heard of coaching and even know a coach but are you still confused about the details of coaching, like – how is it different from therapy, when do you see one, and who gets the best benefits?
Although the coaching industry has been around for over 30 years, there are some common misconceptions about the benefits of coaching and the role of a coach. Here are 5 common myths debunked about coaching which can help you better understand why so many people are hiring a certified professional coach.
#1 Coaches Tell You What You Should Do.
FALSE. Coaches, at least certified coaches, do not tell you what to do or give advice. We even steer away from giving our opinion. If we (coaches) were to tell you what to do, we would be depriving you of your own wisdom and growth. The role of a coach is to provide the foundation and space for you to make your own powerful and conscious decisions.
There are times a coach may educate clients or provide a process (e.g. a book, program, assessment) that helps our clients to achieve a specific goal but what the client does with that information is up to them, not the coach. Certified coaches always keep your agenda in mind and we ask you powerful questions for you to discover your own answers.
#2 Coaching is the Same as Therapy.
FALSE. Although coaching can be therapeutic and therapy can include coaching skills, the approach and intention can differ.
Here is one simple distinction: therapy typically focuses on emotional healing or behavior management and coaching focuses on maximizing performance. However, emotional healing and maximizing performance are not mutually exclusive – emotional healing benefits performance and maximizing performance can be therapeutic and can lead to improved outlook and mood.
Lastly, if you are experiencing emotional distress which prevents you from regularly participating in your daily functions (i.e. going to work, self-care, socializing, etc.), then therapy is the best choice until you are ready to focus beyond the basics. If you are uncertain if coaching is right for you now, a certified coach can help you determine what is best for you.
#3 Seasoned Professionals Don’t Need Coaching.
FALSE. I was at a networking event recently and someone asked what I did. When I said I was a life and leadership coach, he said, “oh, I’ve been in my industry for decades, I don’t need a coach. Maybe you should speak with the younger associates.” When asked why he felt this way, he said he doesn’t need help in furthering his career. At that moment, I realized, some individuals who could really benefit from coaching are ill-informed of the breadth of benefits coaching provides.
Regardless of where you are in your career, coaching can be transformative. A coach is especially helpful when you have been doing what you do for quite some time. Coaching can help you to explore new and fresh perspectives. It can challenge default patterns, and can foster curiosity, creativity, and life-long learning.
Also, when you’ve been doing what you do for quite some time, complacency can set in. Many seasoned professionals do not feel as motivated or fulfilled as they once did. A coach can help you find fulfillment again.
#4 Coaching is Only for Those Who Don’t Have Their Act Together.
FALSE. Many people who seek the support, the personal development, and the awareness coaching offers, are high life performers. They approach learning as a life-long process and they strive to be the best version of themselves.
The key point is that coaching can maximize performance IF the client is committed, interested, and motivated for change.
#5 Coaching is Just for Executives.
FALSE. Coaching can help people in any position – from entry level to executives – to foster leadership, navigate change, improve communication, boost performance, or increase employee satisfaction or purpose.
In addition, coaching isn’t just to increase professional performance – it is for personal performance as well. A certified coach can help you achieve your life goals with family, relationships, authenticity, life transitions, or simply living a more joyful life.
The bottom line – if you desire a change in your situation or mindset – coaching can help you get there more effectively and with lasting results.
Bonus Myth #6 Anyone Can Coach
MIXED BAG. Anyone can learn coaching skills and apply them to work and life. I recommend everyone apply specific coaching skills for improved communication and results. However, not everyone is bound by the ethics and standards of a certified coach. A certified coach maintains clear boundaries, objectivity, and confidentiality at all times. In addition, certified coaches have undergone specific training and coaching hours to help you achieve your goals most effectively.
Bottom line – everyone can learn coaching skills but it does not replace the experience you receive from a certified coach
Now that you know more about coaching, what better way to learn even more but to experience it. Click here for a free discovery session.