If you’re on social media at all today, odds are you’ve seen a million shiny posts and advertisements from coaches telling you they can change your life, help you reach your full potential and if you’re a coach, they’ll help you have your first 6 figure year (cue the eye roll from my fellow coaches!)! If you see these posts regularly, odds are you are someone who is interested in the self-help genre (which is why these ads and pages appear in your feed) and you are probably, at the very least, a little curious about what coaching is and what it can do for you.
The way these big coaching gurus talk in their ads and videos would make you think that they have some major secret, some big piece of the missing puzzle that you don’t have. The profession of coaching is a little shrouded in mystery. But what exactly do coaches do???
There are a lot of different types of coaches out there: career coaches, life coaches, health coaches, nutrition coaches, accountability coaches etc. They’re all a little bit different because of what their focus is, but assuming they’ve gone through a coach training program of some kind, they are going to work from similar tenets of coaching. You should know that coaching isn’t a regulated profession in the US and that means someone can call themselves a coach without any type of training or education. On one hand, this is a good thing – there are many career and life paths that can make someone an incredible natural “coach” without a specific training. But on the other hand, there are wackos out there who are trying to sell products that could be harmful or they are calling themselves a “coach” but operating far out of the scope of practice of coaching by trying to diagnose or treat clients like some highly regulated professions do. Please know that a coach who has been trained properly and who has your best interests in mind will not and can not diagnose, treat or prescribe. I’m getting a little off topic but just know I’ll get into that in more detail below!
I really want to talk about how as a “coach” I can actually help you reach your goals because every so often, I get an email from someone who is having certain symptoms and want to know my thoughts about it. Or they want to drop 20 pounds and want me to create a meal plan for them. And I have to tell them that I’m not the right person to help them with that stuff. I can help you understanding your emotional eating and help you move away from chronic dieting with targeted lifestyle changes and support. I can’t provide therapy and I can’t “fix” you.
My value as a (health) coach isn’t to diagnose you (I can’t do that), prescribe a treatment plan (I can’t do that) or give you detailed meal plan (I won’t do that). It’s not even to fill you up with knowledge about getting healthier or about how you should change your life. And it’s not about giving advice (believe it or not, I rarely give advice to my clients).
Before you wonder why in the world you would hire someone like me, let’s go a little deeper here.
You already know what to eat, you already know what you “should” be doing to feel better, have more energy and live a longer, healthier life. You probably are already aware that you are eating emotionally and that you need to feel your feelings to stop it. You probably already know that the non-stop diet you’ve been on since you were 11 is making it impossible to eat normally as an adult. But knowing all these things (that we are bombarded with daily) is not the same as actually being able to put them into practice. You can know things on an intellectual level and still feel like there is a missing piece.
Sometimes we need an outsider to help us see what that missing piece is.
My value as a coach is helping you change your habits. I can show you how to actually fit these things into your life. I can help you understand and navigate past your self-sabotage. I will help you transform one small step at a time. I can hold you accountable when you’re not being accountable to yourself.
I’m not a doctor, dietician or personal trainer. And I’m not trying to be (and no other professional coach will pretend to be either!). I am a master of implementing lifestyle change. I’m a master of adapting habits.
Many people see their doctor, a dietician and a personal trainer to make life style changes – yet often they still lack a piece of the puzzle to get where they want to be. Your doctor tells you what you need to do to get healthier. Your dietician tells you what macros you should be eating and how many calories and then your personal trainer will work your body in the right way for your goals. But if you don’t do what your doctor suggests and you don’t buy and prepare the foods your dietitian recommends and you don’t show up for your personal training appointment, you’re going to be exactly where you were when you started. A coach is the missing piece that helps you actually do these things.
A coach is also someone who can help you learn to listen to the voice inside you. That voice that you or others have shut down again and again to the point where you aren’t even sure that’s “you” anymore. A good coach helps you figure out your own answers instead of giving you the easy answer. I’m not here to be your best friend. I’m here to help you get out of your own way.
And how do we do that? Not with meal plans (remember, you know what to eat), pills or workout plans. But instead with:
Support (both the loving and tough love kind).
Accountability (ever notice it’s a lot easier to get something done when someone else is depending on you to show up?).
Guidance (I may not dole out advice left and right but if you are on a dangerous or unhelpful path I’ll let you know).
As an objective Sounding Board (I’ll help you weigh pros and cons without inputting my own opinion)
Ideas and solutions (for fitting it all in, getting out of your own way and dissolving excuses).
Provide tools and exercises to help you understand why you work the way you do, help you get unstuck and see the potential possibilities (yes this will often include writing!).
That’s how I can help. Not with diagnosing, treating or prescribing. Not with telling you how to live your life. Not with putting ideas in your head.
If you need an analogy (and we all know I love analogies), think of it this way: You have a ship loaded with supplies ready to cross the Atlantic (we’re time traveling here – this is before modern GPS!). You may even have a crew on board, ready and willing to sail with you. But you don’t know the first thing about navigation (and your crew is too busy to help you with that). I’m the one who can teach you how to navigate using celestial objects. I can teach you to use a compass. I’m the one who can give you the tools necessary to get yourself from A to B over and over again, on your own. You don’t need me to make the trip – that’s all you. But I can give you the support and tools to make it a reality.
One of the things that was most appealing to me when training to be a coach was that in coaching we believe that people have all the answers inside of them already and our job is to help bring that out in them. People are already whole, complete and sometimes just fall off track because they have lost the ability to hear and see themselves fully. Coaching can help you connect to yourself again so you always know the right answer for you.
Still interested in coaching but afraid to pull the trigger? Keep your eyes open for a special offer coming soon! In September I will be making a special (limited quantity) offer to those of you who are new to coaching, that will make trying it more affordable! Make sure you are on my email list so that you don’t miss this offer when it’s ready! Joining this list automatically means you receive my free eBook Healthy Eating Shouldn‘t Be a Workout: Real Life Strategies to Take the Confusion Out of Healthy Living (includes recipes, snack and meal ideas, ways to save money and more!).