life coach vs. therapist
Life Coach Frequently Asked Questions.
What's The Difference? Life Coach vs Therapist
The predominant difference between a coach and a therapist is that a therapist works with the past, deep unresolved emotional pain. Traditional psychology is about pathology, or sickness, it works to identify what is wrong or what is broken and helps clients move from a state of dysfunction to functioning. Whereas life coaching is a now and future minded practice which works to identify what is working and what is going right, focusing on specific achievable goals. Coaching is a way of developing a clear and specific desired outcome, and laying out a concise plan of action to successfully reach it.
Therapy is completely appropriate in situations like severe depression, suicidal thoughts, bi-polar disorder etc. Coaching is not a substitute for therapy in these instances, however you can use a coach at the same time; because as a therapist helps you resolve those issues, a coach can help you apply the skills you learn in real life.
What exactly is a life coach?
A life coach is your advocate, and your partner to building a better more satisfying life. A life coach can help you with many things from prioritizing and organizing your life, to learning how to express your emotions and build self-esteem.
They provide resources, suggestions, encouragement, accountability, and the best part is they are objective, and their sole interest is on improving your quality of life, personally or professionally, whatever your needs may be. You will get better insight into who you are, what you want, and identify specific steps to get where you want to be. You will build skills and gain tools and resources to help you live the life you want.
How do I know I need a coach?
The most recent research shows that almost 80% of Americans suffer from mild to moderate depression, typically related to life events like break-ups, death of a loved one, financial hardship etc. If you are experiencing any of these you may not need a therapist, but you could benefit from working with a coach. In the end only you will know if you really need a life coach or not. The following list of questions may help you decide:
- Do you often feel overwhelmed from the daily tasks at hand?
- Do you feel like you’re living life unconsciously?
- Do you suffer from low self-esteem?
- Do you feel like everyone seems to have a master plan but you?
- Is there a lack of support in your life?
- Do you feel disconnected from the people in your life?
- Are you going through a difficult time in life and need some objective support?
- Do you have deadlines you just can’t deal with and don’t know how to cope?
- Do you feel stuck?
Answering yes to any of the above questions suggests you could benefit from working with a coach.
What is Positive Psychology Coaching?
Positive psychology is the scientific study of what makes life worth living, and individuals flourish. Everyone wants to be happy, and there are as many ways to get there as there are people. "Well-being (or happiness) is just like 'weather'... in its structure: no single measure defines it...but several things contribute to it," says the father of Positive Psychology, Martin E. P. Seligman.
What we do as positive psychology coaches is breakdown a large, ambiguous goal like "Happiness" into smaller, more manageable pieces to help our clients identify, define and cultivate their own happiness.
We are really focused on positive evidenced based solutions. Which means, we stay on the leading edge of positive psychology to make sure the skills and resources we provide to our clients carry more weight than just positive affirmations. These interventions are rigorously tested and scientifically proven to get results.
Isn't it a bit new-age-ish to work with a Life Coach?
I get asked this question more than I get asked how much I charge. Sure, there are Life Coaches out there that are a bit more new agie than others, but Life Coaching is a lot more mainstream than you might think. Don't worry, we won't be asking you to eat tofu, find your spirit animal, or encourage you to read The Secret... Unless of course you want to!
How many sessions will I need?
Each client is different, typically after the complimentary consultation your coach will make a recommendation for how many sessions to purchase based on your needs and desired outcomes. However, it is important to remember that real lasting change does not typically happen immediately. It is standard to recommend a minimum of at least 12 sessions to ensure enough time to learn, implement, and see the benefits of developing new positive habits.
Can we speak before I hire you as my life coach?
Definitely! It is important to make sure you find the right coach for you! That is why every client receives a complementary consultation before full sessions begin.
What happens if we finish before we use all the sessions?
If you get results sooner than you expect and this happens frequently, than you can do any of the following:
- Bank the session(s) in case you need to touch base in the future. (Most people do this)
- Donate the sessions to someone you know that may not be able to afford a Life Coach.
Do you coach young people?
We view this on a case by case basis. If your coach is convinced that the young person genuinely wants the coaching, and it is not by force of parent or guardian then yes. However, we would prefer to work with young people 17 and older.
Are there any clients you don't work with?
There are many conditions where Life Coaching may not be appropriate or Stellar Life Coaching just isn't a right fit for the job. Clients suffering from schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, autism, or severe anger management issues may require special medical care such as doctors and/or medications that most life coaches are not qualified to manage.
I am currently working with a therapist, can I work with a Coach at the same time?
Yes, as long your therapist is aware that we are working together and we're not working on the same issues. We cannot specifically diagnose or treat any of the diagnoses mentioned above.
Do you take medical insurance?
Unfortunately, at this time no health insurance companies (that we know of) will pay for Life Coaching.
Are you a career coach?
Yes, we work with a lot of people that are looking to change, advance, or start their careers. Some services we offer include:
- Resume Writing, Reviewing, and Editing
- Personality, Leadership Style, & Strengths Profiles
- Interview Prep and Mock Interviews
- LinkedIn Profile Customization
However, we do NOT act as a placement agency. We cannot guarantee that you will get a job and we do not help you look for a job.
Do you work with couples?
Yes! Specializing in communication and conflict resolution, couples make up 20% of our business.
Do you do group coaching?
Yes! We are happy to tailor sessions for your group. Or to lead groups through challenging conversations or transitions such as leadership changes at work.
What are your payment terms?
Full payment for Life Coaching is due upon completion of the service agreement, typically at the first session. We believe money should not be a barrier to achieving your goals as such payment plans are available to accommodate the varying financial demands of our clients.
Do you do Life Coaching via e-mail only?
Unfortunately, we do not. However, we do offer phone or web-based coaching via Skype.
Do you do public speaking?
Can I interview you?
We are always open to interview requests, just call 407-203-8933 or email us to get more information.
Is coaching right for me?
Before you frantically search for a coach, step back and ask yourself what exactly you wish to accomplish with a coach. Once you establish this, a life coach can strategize a plan to help you attain your goals.
Life coaching may not be the best option for you if you have a hard time digesting constructive criticism or you just don’t think you can devote the time and energy to make a change for the better. Due to the partnership approach of coaching, it is vital that the client be open and willing to the experience.
Contact a Coach Now!
Kendra Davies, PCC
My Stellar Life by Design plan was spot on! I was challenged to re-evaluate, reconsider, and re-invest in my own happiness. I have never felt so free, or been able to realize the future with such clarity.
- Anna Ruiz
Stellar Life allowed for very open and honest discussions that prompted me to reflect inward, come to real conclusions, express those findings, and allow them to manifest in my day to day life in order for me to work toward my best self.
- David Jessup
Stellar Life has given me tools. Tools that I can apply in both life and work that allow me to be more confident with my colleagues, to take calculated risks, know when to apply my strengths to lead, and become a better communicator. Business has never be this fulfilling... or this much fun.
- Ryan Snyder