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Who Needs A Life Coach?

The booming business of life coaches. Everybody seems to have one these days. Therapists are feeling the pinch. We look at the life coach craze.

Attendees of the 2013 Argentina International Coaching Federation meet for networking and coaching training. (ICF)

Attendees of the 2013 Argentina International Coaching Federation conference meet for networking and coaching training. (ICF)

Maybe it’s the final “Oprah-fication” of America.  Suddenly it seems “life coaches” are all over the place.  Lost in your career?  Get a life coach.  Lost touch with your mojo?  Life coach.  Want a big turn or tune-up?  Life coach.  You put down the cash and the life coach goes to work.  Teasing out your dreams, your desires.  Getting you on track to get there.  The challenge may be at work, may be at home.  Maybe both.  Some therapists worry life coaches are getting into their terrain.  There used to be a stigma.  Maybe not now.  This hour On Point:  we’re looking at the boom in life coaching.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Genevieve Smith, writer for Harper’s Magazine. Senior editor at New York. (@gvsmith)

Allison Rimm, management consultant and life coach. Author of “The Joy of Strategy: A Business Plan For Life.” (@AllisonRimm)

Dr. David Ley, practicing clinical psychologist. Author of  “The Myth of Sex Addiction” and “Insatiable Wives.” (@DrDavidLey)

From Tom’s Reading List

Harper’s Magazine: 50,000 Life Coaches Can’t Be Wrong –”[Life coach] became a punch line, shorthand for all the excesses and narcissism of the self-help industry. In a 2007 episode of The Simpsons, Homer hires a life coach named Colby, voiced by Stephen Colbert, who guides him through a crash landing in a private jet by telling him that he has ‘what made America great: no understanding of the limits of your power and a complete lack of concern for what anyone thinks of you.’”

Fast Company: A Look Inside The ‘Wild West’ Of Life Coaching — “The word coach comes from athletics, though Coaching Manager co-author Joe Weintraub says that the parallels only go so far: while a basketball coach might scream you toward improving on your problems, a life, business, or career coach will only help you make your better qualities into the best.”

Psychology Today: Life Coaches and Mental Illness – “As a psychologist, I’m struck by the shift that such coaching signals for the industry of healthcare. By and large, I think this is a positive trend, emerging in response to need. However, there are important issues to consider, as coaching intersects more explicitly with mental illness.”

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  • Shag_Wevera

    We could all use a life coach, and would also benefit from a personal chef and physician. Where does that leave those of us who can afford none of them?

    • Mari McAvenia

      Friendless, helpless and still broke, anyway. These people are merely “friends for hire”, the platonic equivalent of prostitutes.

      • Ircel

        I am a coach. In reality, the people that I coach are healthy, focused people who want to do more with the lives. And, yes, they already have friends.

        • Human2013

          If they are healthy, focused, driven individuals, what are they paying for. They pay for your reassurance that they are healthy, focused, driven individuals.

          • Ircel

            Someone to challenge them to be pursue their life goals and personal development by identifying clear plans and to work those plans.

    • skelly74

      TV, the Kadashians, microwaveable TV dinners, and Dr. OZ. No problem.

    • brettearle

      A decent book.

  • 12Gary2

    isn’t most of this life coach advice common sense?

    • Shag_Wevera

      Been to Walmart lately?

    • hennorama

      12Gary2 — Common sense isn’t.

  • andrewgarrett

    We are the richest people in the history of the world, and probably the most self-absorbed. So of course – everybody needs a life coach.

    • skelly74

      Yes, don’t be so selfish and greedy. Share your wealth.

      That will be 500.00. I take cash if that works for you?

      • Human2013

        I hate to be the cynic, but a life coach sounds much like an aromatherapist or personal trainer — just another ploy to get into your pockets.

  • John Cedar

    As far as I know, I don’t know anyone with a life coach.
    Not sure who would be qualified to coach someone on their entire life?
    But Most people do find their way through life by consulting with a lot of people and using a lot of references.

  • adks12020

    Beware of life coaches. It’s no different than self help seminars (aka…in many cases a scam). I’ve known a few life coaches over the years. They all had extremely checkered pasts and were not the type of people I’d take life advice from. Their clients probably didn’t know what I did though.

    • John Cedar

      My friend lent me his Tony Robbins tapes and I listened to some of it for a few car rides. There is something to be said for his advice and I found it helpful.

      Although I played guitar since I was 19 and played in a band in the 90′s, I was never able to play the more complicated leads. But two years ago I decided I was going to learn to play the lead solos for Sweet Child, Sultans, Stairway, Reelin’ and I Want you to Want me. The problem was that I tend to make mistakes and have slow reflexes. I recall from 6th grade that my best friend was a star athlete and he could naturally drum his fingers on the desk while I could barley move my fingers separately, even at a much slower speed.

      But over the course of a year I developed dexterity and more importantly speed that I thought I was born unable to learn. It took about half an hour per night every other night and involved Youtube and a big part of it was learning a better way to hold my pick.

      Most people don’t want to accomplish my goal but for some reason I wanted to, decided to, set up a plan to do so, then did it. Its been over a decade since I partially listened to Robbins but there is a case where I applied what he had codified.

      • brettearle

        You didn’t explain what Robbins said in the tapes that had you persevere.

        Was it that latent skills and talents can always be developed with a full commitment to Hard Work?

        • John Cedar

          I persevered because each time I got a little better I found it rewarding. Plus I’m stubborn.

          Robbins just came to mind because, while a lot of people, (myself included) will naturally set one or two major goals, and work toward them, this was a case where I set a number of minor goals and a course of action loosely planned out to achieve them. I know he talked about that in his tapes…but maybe I am thinking of a Franklinplanner course that my old boss was raving to me about.

  • Expanded_Consciousness

    It is more a life cheerleader than a life coach.

    Go, go, go! You are great. Think positive. What are you grateful for today? Write a letter to yourself, forgiving yourself.

    A coach is someone who has some knowledge and can train someone. To discuss things in a deep and meaningful way, go to an analyst or read philosophy.

    In an alienated modern world, they are friend substitutes.

  • J__o__h__n

    I can think of many better things to throw my money away on.

  • Yar

    What is that show that has the recovering alcoholic mother who says she is a life coach? I have seen it once and it pretty well sums up the life coach.

    • adks12020

      I actually know a former raging alcoholic that became a life coach. I dated her daughter in my 20s. She used to constantly try to give me advice as if I didn’t know how screwed up her life had been. If I wanted a life advice I certainly wouldn’t have gone to her. I often wonder if she just spouts Dr. Phil or Oprah type advice in her sessions. She surely isn’t drawing her advice from her own life.

      • J__o__h__n

        I wondered what happened to Jerri Blank.

  • Ircel

    Genevieve’s article distorts the differences between therapy/counseling and life coaching. The life coach does not claim to be a therapist, and the therapist is dealing with different concerns than a life coach addresses. I am a life coach and make sure my clients know the difference. According to the Code of Ethics of the International Coach Federation, it is unethical for a life coach to practice therapy.

    • jefe68

      I would imagine that there are liability issues as well, no?

      A therapist is usually licensed by the state and most have or should have PHD’s. I would have thought there is a huge difference between a psychologist and life coach.

      • Ircel

        There is a difference. Many have a background in helping professions, but not all. If seeking a life coach, ask for training, background, and recommendations.

        • jefe68

          Well, if I wanted help with something that required a therapist I would go to a psychologist.

          I look at this as an American phenomenon that one is exceptional. Most people are are not exceptional. Talent is developed through hard work and discipline.

        • brettearle

          Was my point above not clear?

      • brettearle

        The problem with your point–which is a good point–is that many Therapists, when it comes to clinical issues–are often poorly trained or half-trained; or else don’t have innate skills to be trained, competently.

        Does this make sense?

        • jefe68

          Yep. I would never go to a therapist who was not a psychologist.

          • brettearle

            But jef, even they are half-trained or lack the discipline to employ their aptitude.

          • jefe68

            What do mean by half trained?
            You either have a degree or you don’t.

          • Danny

            Hopefully their degree isn’t just knowledge, but how to use the knowledge. I had lots of PhD professors who knew the content but had no idea how to tell us about it or why it was important. That’s why I think supervision is so very important.

          • J__o__h__n

            “Do or do not. There is no try.” – life coach Yoda

          • brettearle

            It’s one thing to have a degree, it’s another thing to be actually qualified.

            That’s what I meant.

            Do you not agree?

        • Danny

          If licensed clinicians are poorly trained and life coaches have even less training, where do we go?

          • jefe68

            A psychologist or psychiatrist.

          • Danny

            Well yes, they are still licensed clinicians. I may have misread the post. Even Phd and MD have to get licensed so I assumed they were apart of the group of licensed therapists

          • brettearle

            An excellent, excellent point.

            Get back to me, on this Forum, if you can look up a famous anecdote, on Google
            about a Rabbi in the 16th century or 17th century who would serve as a marriage counselor.

            I’ll try to find it as well.

            It’s pretty funny AND telling.

    • brettearle

      So then what are the differences?

      Presumably, you know that Therapists don’t necessarily focus in on clinical behavioral issues or cognitive methodology.

      Instead, Therapists often focus in on discussing people’s problems–without such clinical input.

      And if you disagree with this assessment, I’d like to know why.

      I’ve spoken to a number of people in recent years, who have been in Therapy–and who confirm my observations above.

      • mkz

        One big difference is that typically therapists work with clients to move beyond challenges that have their roots in their past, while life coaches typically work with clients to move forward from their present place of dissatisfaction or challenge.

        • brettearle

          Therapists also do the same thing, sometimes, that you describe, above, that Life Coaches do.

          • mkz

            True. But, as a coach, when I start spending the majority of my time with a client working to resolve issues from the past it is a sign that I need to consider if the client would be better served by a therapist.

          • brettearle

            Good point

  • J__o__h__n

    From the springtime or a hot air balloon, life coaching still doesn’t look any more appealing.

  • hennorama

    How much of the increase in the incidence of Life Coaching is due to the increased disconnectedness of many Americans?

    • brettearle

      Excellent point [ a little back-patting, here].

      The WORLD needs a Life Coach.

      • hennorama

        brettearle — TYFY backpatting R.

        This idea was touched on briefly in the discussion.

        Americans are increasingly busy, and the prevalence of multi-generational housing has declined significantly, making the more routine discussion of one’s circumstances with those who have experienced more of life much less prevalent as well.

        This is exacerbated by digital media and devices, as many have observed and remarked upon.

        • brettearle

          You have used coded acronyms.

          I may take certain measures.

          You might need a Life Coach.

          • hennorama

            brettearle — please leave My Scorned Coda out of this, willya?

          • brettearle

            I will hold judgement, until I make further inquiries.

            But, until then, let me just say that it’s possible you may not be aware of your own suppressed desire for Martyrdom.

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR (Thank You For Your Response, for those needing help with the “coded acronym.”) ;-)

            Indeed, my lack of awareness of my possible lack of awareness might be troubling, if I was somehow made aware of it.

            Otherwise, Ignorance Rules!

          • brettearle

            Did you notice that you didn’t give me a Thumbs-Up when I claimed, above, that you might need a life Coach.

            This may prove my suspected diagnosis of Martyrdom.

            [Oh, new coded acronym for the vernacular: TU, for Thumbs Up. Please be advised.]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYAFYR. (A = Again, FYI. FYI means … oh never mind.)

            Had I noticed that I didn’t do something, would I be more or less inclined to do it?

            Woe isn’t me, I suspect. Rutroh .. now I’m a self-admitted suspect. Or is it vice-versa, or vice-versus?

            Given that I am also not taking this action (take as many guesses as you wish as to what I’m not doing, of course) is this inaction also significant?

            I’m so diffuse.

          • brettearle

            Took me a while to append a TU for this.

            Denial is not a River in Egypt.

            [Methinks you're trying to lure me down a Rabbit Hole.

            Which I might agree to--so long as I meet up with the Cheshire Cat and not the Queen.]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — {sotto voce meccanica monotona} the favor of your reply is appreciated.

            Neither rivers nor holes are at work here, just me messing about, as I have difficulty in both taking and treating this entire topic with any seriousness.

          • brettearle

            All of us–not just you or me–need a Life Coach to tell us when the fine line between jokes and earnestness is crossed….

            Tag, you’re IT

            [And not, as in Lindsay Lohan.].

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR.

            Upon further fine reflective review, that “line” seems embodied by Joni Ernst.

            Also, had John McEnroe’s most famous on-court quote been directed toward [hennorama], said quote would be both accurate and true.

      • Human2013

        What the world needs is to stay connected to humanity and to stop falling prey to the divisions that are created in our society. Then you can coach your own life.
        My formula for happiness:
        Exercise, lots of sun (vita D), friends, family, and a love for humanity.
        The unsuccessful formula:
        Too much time in dark rooms with overpaid people making you relive past traumas, too much sunscreen, a belief that you’re exceptional (America’s dilemma), a sedentary lifestyle and conformity

        • homebuilding

          Human–well stated…

          on the plus side, however, I believe you left out broad exposure, reading, and meeting as many of the world’s people as possible

          on the minus side, you may have meant to include entertainment worship

        • hennorama

          Human2013 — perhaps you might consider these additions to the “formula for happiness”:

          Play (I recommend running “just because,” and puddlejumping)

          Regular solitude, emphasizing a disconnection from all electronic devices

          • brettearle

            Do you remember the President’s eulogy in Arizona and his reference to puddles?

            [One of the most stirring deliveries I've ever witnessed.]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — Wow. No, i’d forgotten that, but thanks for the reminder.

        • brettearle

          Well said.

          But you left out finding, or developing, your Life’s work–which many Therapists and Life Coaches are committed to.

          You also left out discovering whether there is a spiritual component to one’s Life.

          Staying connected to Humanity and even feeling a Love for Humanity–even in the case of Spirituality–does not always solve the issues above, although they certainly could.

          [I'm sure many will disagree with me--but a Love for Humanity sometimes does not mean that you're spiritual. It depends on how one's Love is manifested.]

  • mkz

    On point that has yet to be made – while there is no licensure as of yet, there are certifying bodies that put forth and hold members to specific standards and ethics. The International Coach Federation is the most widely known, and requires a combination of training and client hours for certification.

  • Dana Ortegón

    I found my life coach when I was at what I would call a “spiritual rock bottom.” I was going through a painful divorce, full of sorrow and self-loathing and feeling like I was just punching the clock ’til the end. I worked with her over the course of a year, and it absolutely changed my life. I had spent a lifetime wallowing in the past and never realizing that I had the power to write my own present and future. Sounds very corny and clichéd, I know, but I have taken the tools and insights from that year and applied them on an almost daily basis. Here’s a shameless shout out for my amazing life coach, Christie Inge. http://christieinge.com

    • jefe68

      Please don’t advertise.

      • Dana Ortegón

        Reading comments is optional. If you find the inclusion of a link offensive, don’t click on it.

        • jefe68

          I did not lick on it. I’m just asking you not to use this forum to advertise BS.

          • Dana Ortegón

            Thank goodness you didn’t “lick” on it. That sounds both unsafe and unsanitary.

          • J__o__h__n

            That is the first bit of useful advice posted.

  • Danny

    If I was paying close to $100 / session, I would go with a licensed therapist. At least then my insurance might help with some of the cost. And licensed people go through a lot more training than a 3 day session.

    • mkz

      Professional certified coaches go through much more training than one 3-day session. While not licensed, there is a certification that coaches that hold themselves to a higher standard do seek and maintain.

      • Danny

        That is a bit more comforting I suppose. I pulled the 3 day training from the show. It is still too bad that you have to foot the bill yourself, when you could get help paying for it from your insurance

        • J__o__h__n

          Insurance already costs too much. Paying for therapy of dubious value will increase its cost.

          • Danny

            You can always change therapists if it isn’t helping. And my insurance doesn’t (hasn’t) go up just because I use it.

        • mkz

          Yes – the show has yet to mention the certification level that is available for life coaches. I do believe the field will see a licensure in the future – which may mean that it will be covered by insurance but may also limit the potential of the services (as my therapist colleagues often complain happens).

          • Danny

            The thing about limits on services is it really sucks for consumers. Take case management. Most insurance companies won’t pay for it, but a lot of people need these issues addressed before they can move on to more internal issues. Insurance companies should be more open to allowing therapists to conduct case management.

  • Jeff_in_Connecticut

    Having completed a graduate program in professional counseling, it sounds like life coaching may be the same thing as counseling except that the clients you work with are mentally healthier and higher functioning. From my experience, it is much easier to work with these high functioning clients (for the counselor) than to with those who are very sick and in need of help.

    • mkz

      As a professional certified coach (with the International Coach Federation) and a doctoral student in Depth Psychology, I would agree with you. Clients for life coaches and therapists are different – I refer clients to therapists when their needs are better met through sessions with a therapist.

      • brettearle

        Do you think it’s possible that many Therapists are not trained effectively–to the point where some patients are better served, sometimes, as clients of Life Coaches, instead of as patients of Therapists–even if, in your estimation, your referrals are appropriate?

        • mkz

          I think that in therapy, as in any profession, there are good therapists and not so good therapists. There are good life coaches and not so good life coaches. While training and certification do help a tremendous amount in any field, it does not guarantee that the professional you work with is the best person for you to work with. I think that it is a combination of the finding a professional who has the skills needed to work with you and has a personality that fits with yours.

          • brettearle

            Well-said.

            I am not the only one who feels that is darn hard to find the right Therapist.

    • brettearle

      Good point.

      Life Coaches don’t want to watch, or hear, people fall apart (presumably, those who are lower functioning) in front of them or on the phone.

      But neither do Therapists. Therapists don’t often don’t know what to do either.

      • Jeff_in_Connecticut

        I agree that it is hard to watch someone “fall apart” but therapists may be more prepared with training to help these often depressed, suicidal clients.

        • brettearle

          I agree.

          But we must often be aware that some Therapists may not be prepared, as well.

          And I would argue that there are many more Therapists, than you think, who are not.

          • Jeff_in_Connecticut

            I don’t disagree that there are probably many therapists who are not fully prepared. But in many cases, there is nothing anyone can do. Therapists aren’t magicians, they can’t always predict someone is suicidal or homicidal for example.

            The point I was trying to make is that therapists are often encountering more critical cases than life coaches. The stakes are higher. A life coach might help someone fully actualize, a therapist might save a life.

          • brettearle

            Again, good point and well said.

            We need more people like you to contribute to this Forum.

            Hope you stick around, periodically.

            What’s more (at least by the way you come across), compels me to say that there ought to more people, like you, pursuing your profession.

  • hennorama

    Anyone can claim to be a Life Coach, so it’s very much “Buyer beware.”

    • brettearle

      Indeed, when you think about it, with scrutiny, anyone can serve as a Life Coach to anyone else–symbolically, practically, or otherwise.

      Periodically, the Life Coach–who might be serving in that capacity for only a minute or a day, etc–may not even be beware that he is serving in that capacity. for that amount of time.

      [For example (although the Above is not meant to be humorous), I had an unsuspecting Life Coach, recently, who pointed out that I was exploiting coded acronyms. And I didn't realize it before then. Best things in Life are free....]

      • hennorama

        brettearle — I absolutely am unable to relate to your comment, and have no idea whatsoever why you might have directed it to me. Are you sure you meant to reply to my comment, and not to one made by another?

        Is this a case of the Life Coach who is terrible at being a Life Coach, because they expect their Life Coachees to be able to perform with the same ease to which the Life Coach is accustomed, as in the great athlete failing as a coach because their coaching consists of “It’s easy. Jjust do it like I did, when I was playing”?

        (tongue firmly in cheek as to the above, as far as you know. ;-) )

      • Alex Blakeson

        Therefore, buyer-be-informed. See if the coach is accredited by the ICF (International Coaches Federation), if they are well-trained through a rigorous program/institution you look into and like. Ask if they have other ways to demonstrate their effectiveness, like former clients you can check with. Same would apply to anyone you invest your time and heart/mind/money/time with, including therapists of course.

  • Theresa

    Do you think Life Coaches are more prevalent because of a lack of faith?
    Prayer was considered a way to contemplate or meditate to seek inner
    answers

    • J__o__h__n

      There are always people willing to part fools from their money.

      • brettearle

        But you, and I, cannot say that no one is helped.

    • Danny

      I think this is a valid point. People also consult clergy members when they need a bit of guidance. This might be a way for secular people to have access to the same type of advice.

      • brettearle

        Why would religious people find Life Coach services–when talking with a Rabbi, Imam, Priest, or Zen Master or when attending religious services?

        Why wouldn’t religious people seek services from Life Coaches?

        • Danny

          I didn’t say that they wouldn’t. Throughout history if you had a problem, you consulted with church members and elders in the community. Not as many people go to church or seek advice from church so Life Coaches are a good alternative. Anybody can go to a life coach

          • brettearle

            But why do you think that churchgoers could find in one’s House of Worship, at anytime–in the Past, Now, or in the
            Future–the same services that they could find with a Life Coach.

            [church=generic for House of Worship; or am I going to hear from the politically crowd, because of my choice of words?]

          • Danny

            Ah, I must’ve misunderstood your question. I may be completely mistaken but at the core of Life Coaching is giving advice and an outside perspective. I assume that all clergy go through some sort of training and part of that training is how to guide people of to a better understanding of oneself and God. They may have different names but clergy and life coaches help people see things from a different light and can give guidance to overcome hurdles.

          • brettearle

            I think that the two services can overlap.

            But, in my view, they frequently can be different and are `advertised’ differently.

    • brettearle

      Good point.

      But many people realize that Prayer or Meditation do not necessarily provide answers.

    • Ircel

      I am a Christian who is also a life coach. My faith informs my work but is not imposed on my clients. Many of them are believers, however.

      • brettearle

        But how, specifically, do you think that Religious Faith advances work goals in life–which are often the primary services that Life Coaches offer?

    • Alex Blakeson

      Coaching is not, and does not pretend to be, a substitute for religion! In working to change habits of mind, navigate the paths of life, relationships, roles and find balance among them all, many people draw on their faith, but also on the practiced skill of someone who helps them systematically develop themself, their team, their family. Faith informs many people in their words and deeds.

  • http://argonnechronicles.blogspot.com/ Dee

    I haven’t used a life coach, but I don’t knock them either. I’ve sought therapy a few times. Sometimes they’ve been pretty good. Other times they have been AWFUL. Sometimes you just want/need someone to talk to, someone to help you see the forest for the trees. I have friends – but as working parents we are all so busy it’s darn hard to find a time when two of us are free and available to talk. Often we have to talk with the kids around – NOT the same as being with a therapist or life coach. I say whatever gets you through and helps you to be happy. Yes, beware of shysters, but do what works for you in the ends.

  • Alex Blakeson

    I’ve been both coachee and coach. Two words missing from the discussion so far: accountability and proactivity. Even your best friends, colleagues, mentors, teachers cannot (or don’t) hold you accountable for change in the way a coach can. The 20,000-member ICF (International Coaches Federation) is increasingly recognized as the global organization holding coaches accountable for high professional standards. Proactivity: you don’t need a coach just for lack of friends or when stuck! If you have high ambitions and goals of any kind in life, you hire a coach to work you through the inevitable hurdles, obstacles and opportunities, inside and outside yourself. Alex Blakeson, Vermont

  • brettearle

    Oh, sure….

    Life Coaches and Therapists don’t have Emotional Agendas.

    Oh, sure….

    • hennorama

      brettearle — and the rather obvious agenda of $$$ as well.

      This of course is not meant to imply that $$$ is the sole agenda of any or all Life Coaches.

      • brettearle

        Other agendas include trying to be an emotional `FEMA’* for some.

        Rescue 1, calling Rescue 2….come’in…Rescue 2

        [*Not a coded Acronym. Well-recognized].

        • hennorama

          brettearle — are we going down memory lane, into classic TV shows now? ;-)

          See:
          http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0068067/

          • brettearle

            Who is the leader of this Club that’s…..

          • brettearle

            It is also abundantly clear that you gave me a TU above–so that you wouldn’t be pasted with the stigma of `Martyr’ yet again…

            I don’t miss a trick.

            [Neither does Houdini.]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR.

            My apologies for any lack of obfuscation and opacity inherent in my digital response. Which digit(s) that made such response will of course be left to your imagination.

            For some unknown reason, the initials of the main character in the original British House Of Cards come to mind.

            Your comment leaves one mused, both a- and be-.

          • brettearle

            For some reason that IS known, the main character in the US TV series, “House” comes to mind, when thinking of our Foil– although I think we can safely remove the stamp of Genius, for our purposes…..

            That would more accurately level the playing field–not for us, but to better characterize our Third Party….

            [And, yes, the Chair recognizes the [g].]

            As well as…

            ["and private coded symbols that could have come out of Freemasonry, for all we know;

            "next think we know, we'll see idiosyncratic hieroglyphics, coming from them;

            "and then some chicanery that they'll claim is their own brand of ESP encryption...."

            "And that ESP, won't be what you think; but, instead, will be an encoded Decoy for another one of their Tedious private jokes....." ]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR.

            Mind duly coached and subsequently blown, [hennorama] retires to the veranda for some self-recommended [sunny] solitude sans electronic ephemera.

  • J__o__h__n

    To her credit, the life coach waited until 11:50 to say “think outside of the box.”

    • hennorama

      J__o__h__n — that phrase struck my ear as well. Can one be more clichéd?

      • nj_v2

        Make no mistake about it, ultimately, needless to say, at the end of the day, only time will tell if this is a searing indictment, be that as it may.

        • J__o__h__n

          I’m glad we are all on the same page.

          • nj_v2

            To be sure!

      • nj_v2

        I think we’ve established that the answer to that question is, “yes”!

  • Dab200

    It’s frightening to hear that someone who works on her PhD needs a life coach for guidance to complete it!

    • Ircel

      This is the reality of the modern educational system.

    • jefe68

      Agreed. But with higher ed moving more towards a corporate model it’s easy to see how the help she would need, a mentor who is a professor in the degree she is seeking, might not be there for her.

  • mairelena

    Life coach: In the past, we got this kind of training from our parents. Well, times have changed. Most people do not follow their parents’ profession; many people are still the first ones in their family to go to college; many people do not follow the philosophy or religion of their family. Life has changed; life coach can help a person navigate the changes. What’s wrong with that?

    • brettearle

      Not to mention the increase in identifying family dysfunction in recent years–which, presumably, would discourage family members from seeking such `services’ from within the Family.

  • Alex Blakeson

    For being the doctor in the discussion, Dr. Ley appears to have little understanding of what coaching is and how it works. Coaching does not pretend to be a fast-track or ‘alternative’ approach to psychotherapy. It serves different clients for a different purpose, and the vast majority of professional, accredited coaches know the boundaries between coaching and therapy very well.

    • brettearle

      I would argue that Therapy often offers services that fall short of actual psychotherapy.

      If Life Coaches try to draw a distinction, it might be, more and more, a distinction without a difference.

      It may, indeed, be, in some cases, preferable to seek services from a Life Coach, for issues that once found their purview in psychotherapy.

      I believe that you are ascribing too much credit to Therapists–who are often poorly trained, half-trained, jaded, burnt-out, and, more frequently, have a difficult time using their aptitude and training.

      I hear that complaint, over and over from Therapists and Patients, alike.

      • Alex Blakeson

        Could you kindly restate the point – it is not clear to me.

    • brettearle

      I am surprised that you haven’t responded to my point below.

      Maybe you’re too busy….

      But I think the question is a fair one.

  • Alex Blakeson

    I’ve been both coachee and coach. Two words missing from the discussion so far: accountability and proactivity. Even your best friends, colleagues, mentors, teachers cannot (or don’t) hold you accountable for change in the way a coach can. The 20,000-member ICF (International Coaches Federation) is increasingly recognized as the global organization holding coaches accountable for high professional standards. Proactivity: you don’t need a coach just for lack of friends or when stuck! If you have high ambitions and goals of any kind in life, you hire a coach to work you through the inevitable hurdles, obstacles and opportunities, inside and outside yourself.

    • J__o__h__n

      Any discussion without the word “proactivity” is one worth having.

      • homebuilding

        J o h n, you are so very correct ! Any effort to ban code words would have my full support. The entire psych related area has far too many ‘issues’

        Whilst that might mean concern or problem, or even an item moving toward the top of the agenda, the word has been stolen and now probably means pathological over-concern.

        I can live with the Old Testament definition of blood or ejaculate on the ground……

    • Ircel

      Thanks, Alex, for the clarity provided in your comments.

    • hennorama

      Alex Blakeson — that’s all very well and good, but anyone can claim to be a Life Coach, with zero repercussions, and with no one other than their “coachees” evaluating outcomes.

      • brettearle

        Give `it’ a chance, Henn.

        Eventually the profession will become as dysfunctional as Therapists say their own profession is.

        • hennorama

          brettearle — TYFYR.

          Just pointing out the obvious, as is my wont.

          The same lack of certification/training/licensing requirements also apply to:

          Financial advisors
          Personal trainers

          and many other “professions.”

          What does it say about Life Coaching if the person who cuts my hair needs at least 1500 hours of training, and to pass an exam, but a Life Coach, who may try to “get inside my head” has no such requirements?

          • brettearle

            Excellent and Critical Point.

            [Maybe clients of Life Coaches are bald.
            [Nicht, `soon'. Oh, oh. Broken German.]]

      • Alex Blakeson

        Therefore, buyer-be-informed, like with anything else. See if the coach is accredited by the ICF (International Coaches Federation), if they are well-trained through a rigorous program/institution you look into and like. Ask if they have other ways to demonstrate their effectiveness, like former clients you can check with. Ask for a free get-to-know you meeting. Same would apply to anyone you invest your time and heart/mind/money/time with, including therapists or priests, of course! Look into what’s actually going on and you will find that in fact many people are using ‘real’ coaching to very effective ends in their lives, jobs, families.

        • hennorama

          Alex Blakeson — thank you for your response.

          Until and unless there is some form of required and standardized training and licensing, the term “Life Coach” will continue to scream “Buyer Beware!”

          The estimates that were discussed in the show — $2 billion market worldwide, perhaps half of which is in the U.S., and 50,000 practionioners, implies an average gross income of $40K, suggesting that many earn far less.

          This further suggests many are simply part-time dabblers rather than true professionals.

  • homebuilding

    A word about therapists: They are vested in your pathology and will assign you a mental illness code. If you are wishing to discuss your life problems and seeking means to ‘handle it all’ better, you are very likely to be stuck in a psychotherapy relationship that’s all about you and your problem–and with many, there will be NO plan offered for you–just come back week after week to ‘realize’ your best self.

    Good school social workers and counselors can help a great deal at ages 6 to about 18–and they are useful and needed in an era when school kids have ever less engagement with adults who can tell them about their own life experience. Teeee Veeee, movies, fancyfones and video games are raising the children, too often, so some type of advice/counseling is often called for to fill the void.

    I’d strongly suggest that a big part of the life coaching growth relates to both/either a lack of parenting and a desire to avoid mental illness designations (remember, the latter lasts for a very long time in our electronic eternity)

    There are very good resources and ideas under “relationship education” and “hacking life” Lots of good things for no cost, beyond your readding time, for rather the best thinking of many contributors who’ve sought answers to their life questions–most often OUTSIDE of mental illness designations

    • brettearle

      You raise an excellent point.

      In a time, where we are led to believe that the stigma of `Mental Illness’ has decreased, indeed, it is often precisely the opposite.

      People–who are `discovered’ to have a DSM-IV diagnosis
      –can be shunned, scapegoated, excommunicated, and otherwise dismissed.

      Life Coaching–even if it is not regulated effectively–might be an answer for some.

      • homebuilding

        Thank you, brettearle…

        You understand my point.

        I’d add that there re plenty of physical illnesses, when fully disclosed (or revealed to legal or illegal snoopers) can impair an employment search, etc.

        I should have mentioned for Tracey that much good work is done by social workers outside of the clinical settings–it’s the hour by hour setting where one can so very easily waste a lot of time and money and never get any useful ideas or recommendations–a huge percentage of this work is reflective and simply lacks the advice aspects that many are looking for.

        In studies of various kinds of counseling, using the responses of over 60,000 people, Consumer Reports tells us that most people felt that there was some positive value to counseling–with marriage ‘counseling’ dead last, by a huge margin.

        Other studies show that the average visit (of men) to ‘therapy’ wavers around ONE visit.

        There is considerable consumer dissatisfaction….life coaching might be a significant breath of fresh air

        Caveat emptor

    • Tracey

      I’m a social worker and a counselor. I have worked with abused children, death row inmates, the mentally ill, and everyone in between. I can tell you that most people who do therapy do it because they hope to help others. I’m not “vested” in tagging anyone with a psychiatric diagnosis. Diagnoses are usually required for insurance purposes, not stigmatization.
      Even so, therapists are bound by ethics and HIPAA laws to keep a client’s information confidential. Stigmatization among family, peers, and coworkers can stem from disclosure by the client, but not the therapist.
      In truth, everyone could be diagnosed according to the DSM 5 at various points in their lives. A knowledgeable clinician knows this and looks at their client with a new set of eyes, regardless of what sort of presenting diagnosis may come on any referral documents. Diagnoses change. A person who has Major Depression in 2010 may no longer be suffering from Major Depression in 2014, but may be dealing with something else altogether. There are many variables that can contribute to this.
      Furthermore, when one considers therapy, or is referred for therapy, it is important to do due diligence and make sure that you are seeing someone that comes highly recommended, is perhaps an expert in one’s particular need for therapy, such as trauma focused therapy, or family therapy.
      If there isn’t a good “fit” between the client and the therapist, then help should be sought somewhere else.
      The most efficacious treatments and therapies used now are typically short term. It is rare to find a therapist doing a true Freudian “talk therapy” that lasts for years and years. In good therapy a thorough assessment is completed first, rapport is established, and then the client and therapist work together to create realistic goals that have completion dates. If the client attends therapy faithfully and puts forth good effort, it’s possible to terminate within 3 months.
      There are times when a client may become dependent on the therapist and it is the responsibility to terminate gently at that point. I’ve had to do this on a few occasions. Most therapists have to do this at some point in their careers.
      Not everyone in therapy needs therapy, or a life coach. But I think it’s better to find that out through someone who is trained and educated, rather than Google.

      • brettearle

        Well-envisioned. Well-written.

        But why should there always be a movement toward short-term Therapy?

        I’m of the opinion that some men and women–even those who do not have disabling mental illness–could benefit from talking to a Therapist, either from time to time or periodically.

        Even when the patient isn’t in stress.

        I do not agree–and maybe you are not implying this across the board–that to offer on-going counseling is always a maladaptive strategy, of dependency, for Patient, Therapist, or both.

        Life is tough.

        • Tracey

          The move towards short term therapies is a benefit to the client and the therapist. People don’t want to pay and pay and pay for therapy if there is no goal, no end in sight. Most people don’t have that kind of money or time.
          Again, this is a matter of ethics- if a client is in therapy, has accomplished their goals, has no presenting crisis or issue that needs professional help, then it’s unethical to continue to see that person.
          Therapists aren’t friends. We have a particular skill set that requires education, licensure, and ongoing training. To sit and listen to someone who has already resolved their presenting crisis talk about the news of their day simply because they want to continue therapy is a disservice to that person and taking a block of that therapist’s time that could be used to help someone in immediate need of service.
          Quite frankly, if I needed a therapist and someone told me, “Go see John Doe. I’ve been seeing him for 5 years and he’s great!” I’d think that John Doe must not be doing a very good job if he hasn’t been able to help his client in less than 5 years.
          When a person completes therapy they experience a sense of accomplishment and mastery of their emotional life. To keep someone in long term therapy for years sends the message that, “You’re such a mess you can’t possibly manage your life without me!” How is that helping?
          There is also this to consider- if a client comes to therapy and is terminated after a time because they’ve reached their goals and they’re doing well, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the therapist won’t see that person again if needed in the future. Many clients return to therapy after completing one round prior. It’s just like any other thing you might need- a dentist, a doctor, etc. You go when you need it, but you don’t go if you don’t
          Keep in mind what I’m talking about is therapy, not psychiatry, which addresses major mental illnesses with medications. There are definitely times when a person needs long term medication management of illnesses like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

          • brettearle

            Again, your comments are well-defined and excellent.

            And, as a writer, i appreciated reading the content and the style.

            Let’s take me out of the equation for a moment. [But only partially.]

            Existential angst is not something that is embraced only by me.

            One can have this sort of experience, for many years.

            After Mother Theresa died, it was revealed, through her journals, that she lived, sometimes, in sustained despair– partially, or more than partially, because she felt that God had abandoned her; that she could never find a way to talk to God.

            Many people, that I have known over the years, have complained to me that they find their lives to be challenged by problems of all kinds–family, job, health, etc. And these same people feel that Life, on an ongoing basis, is tough.

            Some of these same people might NOT be diagnosed with major clinical depression, for example, simply because their illness might be biochemical or `endogenous’.

            But rather stress in their life is either acute or protracted–from some, or many, challenges:

            Such stressors can, therefore, induce coping issues….ones that could even be ongoing, without the patient necessarily, I would think, always being diagnosed by the DSM-V, with a major mental illness

            I hear, over and over again of the hardship of, simply, daily living….

            It seems to me that hardship can encourage sadness, grief, despair, discouragement.

            I do not understand why people can’t, legitimately, seek ongoing consultation for such issues and matters.

            Your view strikes me as one where the Therapist is trying to get the patient to make a `social/cultural adjustment’ into society.

            I’m not sure it works that way, all the time–even for the more `adjusted’ among us….

          • datch

            Beautifully said.

          • brettearle

            Thank you.

            What `line of work’ are you in?

            I’m a writer.

            Did you notice that she didn’t answer me? [But she did the first time.]

  • Alex Blakeson

    Very true, and well-said! I wish I had been able to get on the air to say something similar. None of the guests presented a clear picture of how coaching actually works so listeners could understand how it complements psychotherapy and other approaches, not competes, and how effective it actually is.

  • Tyler Oxford

    With respect to people calling themselves “coaches” with minimal or no formal training, there is an International Coaching Federation that certifies reputable programs. As a coach, I always recommend people interview their coach and find out their credentials before hiring a coach.

  • Tyler Oxford

    “Far too many of us have been so seduced by our own self-limiting conversations, that we are actually thriving on them. Being supported by a coach means being supported in seeing who you really are by someone whose top priority is your success—someone who will hold your dreams in front of you when your own story or life’s distractions get in the way, so that you can be and have everything you want in life!” ~ Tyler Oxford, Empowering Life Success Coach

    • hennorama

      Tyler Oxford — respectfully, this forum is not for self-promotion.

      • Tyler Oxford

        Sorry, my comment was not intended that way. Posting the quite was inspired both by a caller comment and the therapist response. Thank you for the reflection, I’ll edit it…..

        • hennorama

          Tyler Oxford — thank you for your response. In all fairness, at least you didn’t link to your own website.

          • Tyler Oxford

            Ha!—yeah, that would have been totally shameless self promotion! At least I didn’t register as “Coach Tyler.” ;) Plus I don’t have a website. I market referrals and give local talks/ trainings. :)

      • Tyler Oxford

        hennorama, having read through the whole thread, I really appreciate your comments and mediation throughout the conversation. Good Stuff!

        • hennorama

          Tyler Oxford — thank you for your response, and your very kind words.

          My comments on this topic reflect my skepticism, and my struggle to take this entire topic seriously.

          • Tyler Oxford

            Love It! If you are interested, many of your concerns may be addressed at the website for the institution where I was trained, and am almost done being certified, The Academy for Coaching Excellence in Sacramento, CA. All the joyous best to you!

          • brettearle

            Notice he gives you praise, even though my jokes are better?

            [There's always room for competition.]

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR, YRTY.

            Otherwise, [hennorama] is both nonplussed, and nonminussed.

          • brettearle

            YRTY?

            coded?

          • hennorama

            No, of course not; simply a Treat.

          • brettearle

            Notice how he refers to himself in the 3rd person now?

          • brettearle

            Ladies and Gentlemen, he’s typing….

          • hennorama

            brettearle — TYFYR.

            He? That does not seem to be the popular view, despite all cautions. One may or may not be accurate, but Shirley both are not.

          • brettearle

            wormwood! wormwood!

            sling blade! sling blade!

          • brettearle

            Woe izzz me!

            I just got a TU!

            End of Martyrdom!

          • hennorama

            Such rebellious typing, and typical.

          • brettearle

            No Comment.

            I don’t want to raise anyone’s BP, said Salazar and the Department of Minerals Management….

          • brettearle

            And don’t call me Shirley!

          • brettearle

            You’re plugging up more holes than that guy, with the 3 Ganges Dam…

          • hennorama

            Gang[nam] Dam Style?

          • brettearle

            Do you think we ought to quit while we’re ahead–at least temporarily?

            Shall we cover our tracks?

            I will likely be seen again,….

            Dam Style??

          • hennorama

            GMTA as to cessation. Dealer’s choice as to the rest.

          • brettearle

            Do you notice someone’s typing?

            I wonder who it is.

            Do you think it’s a member of the Thought Police?

          • hennorama

            Dunno, regardless, stopping … now.

          • brettearle

            Oh! Oh!

            2 people typing. This ought to be fun, fun, fun `till my Daddy took the T-Bird Away.

          • hennorama

            Please allow an edit, in order to allow your interpretation to be accurate:

            “One may or may not be accurate, but Shirley[,] both are not.

          • brettearle

            ??

          • hennorama

            Eats shoots and leaves.
            Eats, shoots, and leaves.

            Shirley, you understand.

          • brettearle

            You give me too much credit.

            Some people think I’m the greatest satirist since, a slice off a used loaf’s never missed.

            But there are glaring gaps in my quick- study capacity.

          • hennorama

            Yeah.
            Right.
            Yeahright.

    • kbhmsw

      Obviously, since you are not a Master’s or Doctoral-level therapist, you don’t know the first thing about it. Therapy is not about “processing the past”, and you don’t know how to discuss the difference because you’re not a trained therapist. You’re a charlatan who’s guessing at it, and getting it all wrong. Therapists actually do coach people on being supported for their success, following one’s dreams, overcoming distractions, and having the life you want. But if you weren’t too lazy to do the work involved in a Master’s or Doctoral program and all the sacrifices and work involved in becoming a therapist, you would know that already.

      • datch

        Wow. I *have* done the work involved in Masters and Doctoral work, and I would never wish to go to a therapist who regarded people as “lazy” simply because they chose a different path and who calls people “charlatans” simply because he disagrees with what they do. It sounds to me as if you are defensive about people with similar, though not identical skills, encroaching on your territory.

        • Guest

          Please check out The Academy for Coaching Excellence in Sacramento, which was founded by Dr. Maria Nemeth, who has a doctorate degrees in both psychology and neurology, is a clinical psychologist.

          • Tyler Oxford

            Please check out The Academy for Coaching Excellence in Sacramento, which was founded by Dr. Maria Nemeth, who has a doctorate degrees in both psychology and neurology, is a clinical psychologist. http://acecoachtraining.com/about/maria-nemeth/

      • Tyler Oxford

        Wow! Thank you for your fine display of condescension and ego.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Sorry, Tyler, but you’re statement is incorrect. The most widely recognized and currently dominant form of therapy is “cognitive behavior therapy” which deal very little with one’s past. It focuses on changing behaviors that are holding one back from living the life one wants to live in the present. This PROVES Life Coaching IS just a loophole to get around the proper training.

      Now, I don’t necessarily think all coaches need a master’s degree. But don’t make false statements about what you think the differences are. Because the only real difference is Life Coaches dabble in both social work and psychotherapy without being required to have full training in either one.

      • Tyler Oxford

        Please check out The Academy for Coaching Excellence in Sacramento, which was founded by Dr. Maria Nemeth, who has a doctorate degrees in both psychology and neurology, is a clinical psychologist. http://acecoachtraining.com/about/maria-nemeth/

        • Alchemical Reaction

          Why???

  • HonestDebate1

    My advice, not that anyone asked, would be lean on family, look for strong role models and stay away from strangers telling you what’s best for you.

    • janet444

      Hi HonestDebate, I’m a certified life coach and just wanted to clarify – coaches (if well trained and certified) don’t tell you what’s best for you. We agree, you’re the expert on what’s best for you! We do have skills that help you find the answers within yourself and take action steps towards your goals. I’m not trying to convince you to hire a coach, just wanting to clarify.

      • HonestDebate1

        Fair enough, thanks.

  • Tyler Oxford

    An ICF certified training program requires 75 hours of mentored coaching by a certified coach, as a minimum requirement. And ICF certified coaches are required to obtain 20 hours of continuing education units in ICF certified classes/ trainings—in other words, well trained, professional coaches are out there if one takes the time to find one. Personally I was trained at the Academy for Coaching Excellence in Sacramento, CA.

  • Christina

    As a trained life coach and instructor of coaches, I am very clear about when to refer a client t o a therapist. Coaches in training are typically required to get coached themselves, and training programs vary greatly in length. I, for one, do not give clients advice. I help them remove the need for advice by tuning in to the wisest counsel anyone can have – themselves.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      lol

  • JGC

    JGC, Armchair Life Coach: What is everyone doing pondering life coach forums? Time to log off and self-actualize!

  • Jamie Harrison

    As I am listening to this show, I can’t believe the uncanny similarities between life coaching and SOCIAL WORK! I am graduating in a few weeks with my master’s degree in social work and all of the skills discussed, the goals of life coaching, and purposes of it all align directly with those of social work. I agree that individuals should be licensed to provide such complex and delicate services, and I’m uncertain why the need to differentiate between the two. It kind of seems that the term “life coach” communicates clearly the purpose of the service, whereas social work is often mistaken for child welfare and not fully understood.

    • kbhmsw

      Amen, Jamie. I am a social worker, a licensed psychotherapist, and a life/career coach in full-time private practice, and I’m also a clinical supervisor and professor of social work at USC’s MSW program. I agree with you! Bless your heart! :)

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Jamie, my mother has been a social worker for 35 years! She does not have a degree because she started back when a degree was not required!

      She has only ever just “gotten by” financially. I cannot express how frustrating it is and how many times I have urged her to become a private practitioner as a life coach or consultant.

      Not only are you ABSOLUTELY correct, but it is appalling that regulators haven’t already jumped on the Life Coaching profession and begun to require an MSW. The skill set is really the same.

      • HarryObrian

        Making something more complex does not make it better.

    • HarryObrian

      Personally I don’t believe either is needed at its present level. I believe your profession was created by a need for more government control of the individual and it would not be needed if the primary education system was effective and parents were a product of that effective education system and were allowed to be responsible for their children. Your profession is a product of the nanny state.
      While there are certainly people who are in need the exponential rise in the number of those people is a direct result of the lowering redefinitions used to assess and label people, aka, your job security.

  • Jeff_in_Connecticut

    Your comment is interesting in that it provides one life coach’s take on what life coaching is all about. I’m hoping that you aren’t intentionally advertising your life coaching services here because this doesn’t seem like the right place for promotional material.

  • John Cedar

    This is what I imagined a life coach would do. I think all the negative comments here are a little sad. There is no subject in the world that I couldn’t benefit from the knowledge and thoughts of others who visited the subject before me and spent more time thinking about it and organizing a theory on it.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    My mother has been a social worker for 35 years! She does not have a degree because she started back when a degree was not required!

    She has only ever just “gotten by” financially. I cannot express how frustrating it is and how many times I have urged her to become a private practitioner as a life coach or consultant.

    It is interesting that regulators haven’t already jumped on the Life Coaching profession and begun to require an MSW. The skill set is identical!

    But social workers have a stigma because they are seen as big government lackies who are gonna take your kids and put them in GLBTQ soup kitchens. Social workers are given NO respect by the public and despite regularly working twelve hour days are paid meager salaries.

    The most widely recognized and currently dominant form of therapy is “cognitive behavior therapy” which deal very little with one’s past. It focuses on changing behaviors that are holding one back from living the life one wants to live in the present. This PROVES Life Coaching IS just a loophole to get around the proper training.

    Now, I don’t necessarily think all coaches need a master’s degree. But the reality is Life Coaches dabble in both Social Work and Psychotherapy without being required to have full training in either one. And maybe the right course for regulation is an interdisciplinary degree with courses in Social Work, Psychotherapy, and Business.

    On the other hand, I disagree with many of the regulations out there for individual professions. In many cases, regulations are outdated and require training in areas with very little relevance to the actual work being done. Thus, it is another conundrum we face in the modern world.

    The most interesting factor, for me, is the demographic and geographical one. Since high speed fiberoptic internet is rendering geographical areas into “city states” and the rest of the country “beyond the pale”. Where you live will have as big of an impact on how much money you make as where you went to school. Especially since the recent debacle about high speed wall street trading firms. These nano seconds mean someone can buy something and sell it to you in the time it takes your internet connection to send the first “buy” signal. The municipalities that have this fiber optic speed will dominate in business and the effects will ripple into many other aspects of life.

    What does this have to do with the subject at hand? A social worker in the country obviously has a much harder time becoming a “life coach” than a social worker who lives in a big, modern city.

    Incidentally, after doing a quick search on Bing, I discovered there ARE four or five “accredited” programs in life coaching, domestically.

  • Tyler Oxford

    The fear based attacks and insults being throw around this comment thread by therapists are quite fascination and very telling; along with their seeming refusal to educate themselves on what it means and takes to become a “certified coach.” Possibly what is being missed is that reputable coaches who have been trained by long standing and well respected institutions are also very concerned about the title “coach” having become a buzzword that anyone who attends a weekend transformational seminar can use; in other words, coaching is unregulated—even a hair stylist has to get a license! This why the International Coaching Federation was created. http://coachfederation.org/about/landing.cfm?ItemNumber=741&navItemNumber=615

    • Alchemical Reaction

      I don’t know about others on this thread, but if you would have read what I wrote directly below this comment, you would see that I DO respect coaching as a profession. Mostly because I feel the regulations for most professions are too far-reaching and require training in areas that have nothing to do with the actual work being performed.

      Having said that, my only disagreement with what you wrote was your perceived differences between psychotherapy and coaching.

      The ONLY real difference between psychotherapy and coaching is LIABILITY… THIS IS A FACT.

      The idea that coaching deals with the present and therapy deals with the past is FALSE.

      Cognitive Behavior Therapy deals exclusively with the present.

      • Tyler Oxford

        Point well taken, and thanks for being civil, many yours and kbhmsw’s comments have been delivered with condescension and insults, filled with vitriol, which negates any real validity for anyone

        As I stated somewhere, the differences are not simple, and to expand on that comment, it is far to easy to pick apart any comment in this thread, if one chooses.

        Yes, there are many branches of therapy that deal with the present, having been through 2.5 year of therapy by a MFT, I know firsthand. The nuance is that coaching deals almost exclusively with the present, with no focus on unpacking or analyzing the past. Incidentally, as we were coming to a close, my therapist was both excited and encouraging of my perusing a coaching career; of course being schooled in the Bay Area, she knew the institute where I was to be trained for two years, which includes an exhaustive mentoring piece in its program.

        • Alchemical Reaction

          I find it funny that you interpret my comments as condescending. They’re not condescending. Do you have an inferiority complex?

          • Guest

            Really?!? No thanks. Not gonna bite. Fare well……

          • Alchemical Reaction

            I thought about this a little more and realized I was condescending. I further thought about it and realized I am happy being condescending, because my IQ is in the 170s and my intellect is lonely.

          • HarryObrian

            Then get a life coach…..

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Indeed.

  • Michael Rogers

    Everyone needs a second opinion, many use their S/O which often is far less than optimal.
    When a upper management person goes into another company, they’re assigned one of the old timers there that know how THAT
    institution works

  • hypocracy1

    And to think I’ve been giving all my good advice away for free…

  • Marilyn Edelson

    Thanks, Tom. Great program.
    I’ve been coaching for more than 15 years. I’m a licensed therapist (clinical social worker) as well. I divide my time between coaching and doing therapy. I also direct a training program for post-masters professionals at Boston University and have written a textbook for social workers and other human service professionals. As Meredith points out, coaches don’t tell people what to do. We help people by asking questions that make them think better and look at different perspectives so they make better choices and decisions.

    When asked the difference, I tell people therapy is for “medically necessary” counseling (people require a diagnosis to use their medical insurance which most people in therapy do these days) and coaching is for non-medically necessary issues– such as developing leadership skills, career change, self-improvement, tackling a big project such as writing a book or finishing a Ph.D, .etc. Although I am a licensed therapist, if a coaching client presents mental health issues, I generally refer them to another therapist.
    People can be in therapy and receive coaching at the same time although occasionally it makes sense to have some therapy sessions first and return to coaching later.

  • kaybee63

    Ah, first world problems.

  • Yar

    Us-verses-them theology, psychology, political philosophy, or whatever construction we create, which allows us to rationalize and ignore the exploitation of others is part of our culture of privilege. We recoil at racist language while practicing racism and other forms of exploitation in our own lives. How do we build diverse communities based on equity? Local systems which are intentionally inclusive are a good start.
    How can OnPoint discuss racism without also talking in consideration the culture of slavery surrounding undocumented workers? Their freedoms and rights are entangled in slave like conditions. Why is it our Federal Government is arresting undocumented workers as they leave the country? Just maybe, it is to spread fear and keep the rest of an undocumented workforce on the job. Systems exist because they are working for some, only when those systems no longer work or those in power fear a revolt or and actual revolt occurs will the system change. How do we get past simply addressing the hate espoused by individuals to actually addressing exploitation currently practiced by our culture today? Only then can we address the racism which is perverse and pervasive in our society.

ONPOINT
TODAY
Aug 28, 2014
Photos surround the casket of Michael Brown before the start of his funeral at Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis, Monday, Aug. 25, 2014.  (AP)

The message that will last out of Ferguson with New Yorker writer Jelani Cobb.

Aug 28, 2014
Some of the hundreds of earthquake damaged wine barrels cover and toppled a pair of forklifts at the Kieu Hoang Winery, Monday, Aug. 25, 2014, in Napa, Calif. A powerful earthquake that struck the heart of California's wine country caught many people sound asleep, sending dressers, mirrors and pictures crashing down around them and toppling wine bottles in vineyards around the region. (AP)

Drought in California, earthquake in Napa. We look at broken bottles and the health of the American wine industry.

RECENT
SHOWS
Aug 27, 2014
The cast of the new ABC comedy, "Black-ish." (Courtesy ABC)

This week the Emmys celebrate the best in television. We’ll look at what’s ahead for the Fall TV season.

 
Aug 27, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, shakes hands with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, right, as Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, center, looks at them, prior to their talks after after posing for a photo in Minsk, Belarus, Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. (AP)

Vladimir Putin and Ukraine’s leader meet. We’ll look at Russia and the high voltage chess game over Ukraine. Plus, we look at potential US military strikes in Syria and Iraq.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Poutine Whoppers? Why Burger King Is Bailing Out For Canada
Tuesday, Aug 26, 2014

Why is Burger King buying a Canadian coffee and doughnut chain? (We’ll give you a hint: tax rates).

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1 Comment
 
Why Facebook And Twitter Had Different Priorities This Week
Friday, Aug 22, 2014

There’s no hidden agenda to the difference between most people’s Facebook and Twitter feeds this week. Just a hidden type of emotional content and case use. Digiday’s John McDermott explains.

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1 Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: August 22, 2014
Friday, Aug 22, 2014

On mixed media messaging, Spotify serendipity and a view of Earth from the International Space Station.

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