“PART CONSULTANT, PART MOTIVATIONAL SPEAKER, PART THERAPIST AND PART RENT-A-FRIEND, COACHES WORK WITH MANAGERS, ENTREPRENEURS, AND JUST PLAIN FOLKS, HELPING THEM DEFINE AND ACHIEVE THEIR GOALS — CAREER, PERSONAL, OR MOST OFTEN, BOTH.”
Just what is a life coach? What do life coaches do? Why not just see a therapist? Aren’t they the same? Not quite. A life coach will guide you through a process and the accompanying changes by asking questions that help you take a look at your life, identify your goals, and help you reach them. They become your motivator and your guide paddling alongside of you as you grow.
Life Coaches Can Help
Life coaches are different than therapists, who deal with mental health issues. The goal of a life coach is to ensure you reach your goals, from the first to the last steps. An important part of this process involves addressing the specific issues that may be holding you back. They must be dealt with or they will hinder your progress, perhaps even derailing your journey.
This first step is adjusting your thinking. This involves identifying areas of your life that are holding you back. Dealing with change means involves making some hard, yet necessary, decisions recognizing aspects of yourself that are blocking your progress.
Change is not like an electric switch that is either on or off. It is like baking bread. There are many steps and ingredients. Both baking bread and changing behavioral patterns take time. You need to hold yourself accountable for your actions. For instance, making excuses. Almost everyone has been guilty of this at one time or another. Time to stop. Quit putting it off, quit complaining about it, quit whining about it, quit saying “oh I will deal with it when…” As Nike says “Just Do It.” No one is coming to save you. You need to feel confident and life coaches help you feel empowered so you can move on and quit dragging your feet.
Breathe and be flexible. Prepare to move with the changes because they are going to happen. No life is free of change and you wouldn’t like it if it was.
Fear and Intimidation
Intimidation for many is a mindset that stays with us all our lives. It is the resident monkey on our back and acts as a serious obstacle to growth. Clearly, you can’t just say “hey, I am not going to be frightened of that anymore”, unless you have super-human mental control. Often a fear or feeling of intimidation is a perception that is quite literally all in our mind.
Take speaking in front of a crowd for example. Not something that is intimidating per se, unlike being pursued by a pride of lions intent on making you their dinner. A life coach can talk you through these negative perceptions, putting them into perspective for you so that when the time comes to face them, you are mentally and emotionally equipped to deal with overcoming your fear. Your coach will act as your motivator and teach you the necessary patterns of thinking to assist you with facing fear.
I’ve Got More Important Things to Do
Setting priorities is much like procrastination. You need to clean the house, but you will find anything else to do first to avoid dealing with this disagreeable task. Following the path of least resistance is human nature.
Making a daily task list is critical. Some people are highly organized compared to others; they are naturally capable of setting priorities, and sticking to a list of tasks. Others, not so much. They need help, because their “disorganized behavior” has probably been with them all their lives. Again, back to change. If you are a disorganized individual with little or no ability to identify important tasks and staying focused, you need to change; ask your life coach and they will guide you through the behavioral modifications necessary to move forward.
It is very important to develop a support system as you proceed through the often painful process of goal achievement. At certain times, you will want to just throw in the towel and say it’s just too hard, I can’t do it. This is when you need a support network to get you back on track, to make you believe in yourself. Only you can save yourself. Believe in yourself and you will win in the end.
SEE A LIFE COACH IN BATON ROUGE
Frank Hopkins is a life coach in Baton Rouge who is certified as a Professional Coach (CPC) by the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC). Frank has helped numerous people to go through emotional change in a way that is positively transformative. You can see more at www.frankhopkinlifecoach.com on line as well.