The resurgence of life coaches in the mid-1990s created buzz in social circles about what life coaches exactly offered. Just two decades later, coaches are still dealing with many myths around their trade.
Myth #1: Life coaching takes hours and hours of your time with little impact.
The fact of the matter is that most coaching sessions last anywhere from only 20 minutes to 60 minutes, sometimes as little as once a month. Optimally, two to four sessions a month reap the most rewards. In terms of maximizing personal and business potential, coaching leads to a 61% improvement in job satisfaction and 77% improvement in relationships.
Myth #2: Life coaches can help with your professional life or your personal life, but not both.
Whether you’re wearing your Saturday casual clothes or your workday business attire, the same personal patterns you apply in your everyday life are often present whether you’re at work or not. Most coaches will touch on both personal and professional issues, as they are commonly related. Negative coping mechanisms and negative patterns used in your personal life are almost always used in your professional life. A coach can identify these trends and help you develop ways of overcoming these patterns that kill your potential.
Myth #3: Therapy is the same as life coaching.
Counseling and professional psychological help has a different goal than life coaching. Counselors and psychologists are trying to help their clients overcome a trauma or a negative background that implies they need to be “fixed.” Counselors and psychologists often focus primarily on the past. Coaches, on the other hand, focus on day-to-day happenings that do not originate in a traumatic past. Coaches aren’t trying to “fix” their clients, rather they are trying to maximize their client’s already forceful potential.
Myth #4: A life coach is basically the same as a good friend.
Coaches are much more likely to hold you accountable to your goals and assignments than a close friend. While we all need close companionship and counsel, a coach’s goal is to help you improve and reach your goals. Generally, a good friend is there to empathize instead of mentor. Coaches also tend to be more honest and have more experience rather than filling the role of a listening ear.
Myth #5: A life coach will be able to solve all my problems for me.
Coaches’ goals are to help you uncover the answers from your own inner wisdom and experience. No reputable life coach will hand you a checklist to solve all your problems. Rather, a coach will dig deeper into your day-to-day patterns to help propel you beyond your obstacles. A coach will also help you identify what your goals really are instead of letting you “float” through life.
Many adults are intimidated by the cost of a coach, but what’s the cost of not hiring a coach? Will you continue to waste your potential? Remember, the cost of a coach is an investment into your future – much like education and health.
A good life coach coaches only those who follow their coaching agenda. A great life coach spends the necessary time to learn the clients’ individual differences and needs.