What is Coaching?

Coaching is forward looking, often (but not always) with a specific goal in mind.  To be coached you need to be ready for and open to change. As a coach I help you achieve your full potential by offering space to think and express your thoughts and ideas without censor or judgement and to see the way ahead to achieving your goals.  

It is essentially a conversation which allows you to release and make sense of all those half-formed ideas floating around your mind.  However much you think about things there is something very powerful about saying the words out loud that helps you to get clarity. And who you talk it over with really matters – a well-meaning friend, colleague or partner can be quick to impose their own point of view – and to censor your thinking before it’s fully emerged.  As a coach I don’t give advice and I don’t judge. I believe that you are whole and complete and that you have all the answers within. I listen really carefully not only to what you say but the way that you say it. I ask you questions which aim to challenge your assumptions and release you from the limits you put on yourself. This leads to greater self-awareness and new perspectives, empowering you to find and take the direction you truly want.

What’s the difference between life coaching and other forms of coaching?

Not a lot really!  The principles of coaching can be applied across many different areas.  Executive coaching focuses on performance in the workplace and can help employees see ways to achieving work-related goals.  Career coaching helps people to make and progress longer term goals such as changing jobs or transitioning careers. Life coaching looks at all aspects of a person’s life including their work, family, relationships, hobbies etc. and identifies and works on the areas where the person feels stuck, or is struggling to make a change. 

What’s the difference between coaching and counselling or therapy?

There is some overlap in that coaching is a ‘talking therapy’, however, coaching tends to be more future focused and linked to action whereas therapy often looks to the past to make sense of what’s going on.

Mental health is a spectrum.  As an accredited coach, I abide by the ICF Code of Ethics.  If I suspect that a coachee may be suffering from a serious mental illness then I will advise them to seek professional help from a doctor or psychotherapist.  

Are there any circumstances in which the coach would break confidentiality with her client?

If the client were to reveal any intention to harm themselves or others then I have a safeguarding duty to report this to their employer or next of kin.

What outcomes can I expect from coaching?

Coaching is not a silver bullet.  It requires a commitment from you.  I will ask you to do some work in between sessions.  The more you put into the process the more you will get out of it. If you put the effort in and take responsibility for yourself and your actions you can achieve …..

  • Clarity on what you want out of life and how to get it
  • Practical step by step action plans
  • Better understanding of stress and how to manage it
  • Greater resilience 
  • Improved self-confidence
  • Greater self-awareness including what motivates you
  • An understanding of the values that are truly important to you
  • Ability to let go of the stories from the past that ‘define’ you (Spoiler alert: They don’t!)
  • Better control of your ‘inner saboteur’
  • Removal of the obstacles to your goals and dreams
  • A more positive mindset 

How many coaching sessions will I need?

Whilst people can and do derive benefits from single sessions, in order to make a lasting change I recommend investing in six hour sessions.  I usually find that clients get the most benefit by spreading the six hours over 6 x 1 hour sessions every two weeks so that the programme lasts approximately 3 months.  However this can be tailored to your needs.

I work full time, when will I fit the sessions in?

Sessions can be face to face (I am based in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire) or via a video conferencing app such as Skype, Zoom or Google Hangouts.  Some clients prefer voice only calls but I find that it is good to build rapport with an initial video call.  I have some appointment slots in the evening and at weekends so we can find a time that’s right for you.