“We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves”
So what is coaching, family and friends ask me. What type of studies are you talking about? What skills does a coach have? Does a coach have to study psychology? What topics can clients bring to session? Does it work?
Below answers to the 7 most frequent questions about Coaching
What is coaching?
If you go around the different definitions that Coaching has on the internet you will realize that they are multiple. It is known as a discipline, a methodology, an art, a procedure, a leadership style, a set of techniques, a tool, a learning process.
The ICF (International Coach Federation), an organization that leads the overall progress of the Coaching profession defines Coaching as:
“partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential”.
Personally, consider a coaching process a learning trip to self-knowledge that transforms the lifestyle that was known. Through questioning, the person observes his or her definition of being through language, thoughts, corporality, and emotionality. The inquiry allows him or her to see themselves as responsible for the way of interpreting life and therefore a way of being in the world. A coaching process leads the coachee (client in session) to bring to attention the use of their skills, interests and values to let go fears, limitations, and interpretations. And it’s at that moment, when decides to travel the road from the place where he/she is to the place where he/she wishes to be. A redesign follows, of seeing, acting and, consequently, setting new goals that generate a change in results, and a possible personal transformation.
What are the reasons to start a coaching process?
For a coaching process to exist, there must be a coachee in the “search for a solution” to an important situation in his/her eyes that is being difficult to solve, evolve or let go. The circumstances can be very diverse: a recurring difficulty in life, resolve an interpersonal conflict, vocational guidance, a feeling of stagnation, or achieve a professional goal to name a few. Moreover, he or she must feel a real commitment to inquire internally and find answers.
What are the capabilities of a coach?
The coach, in his role, listens with real curiosity, investigates, provokes, facilitates tools for client’s learning journey. It becomes a mirror and questions beliefs, customs, habits, judgments, perceptions and the coachee’s responsibility to make an open invitation to new possibilities. He recognizes the coachee as a unique and capable being and opens the space for him/her to discover and actively participate in the increase of her/his well-being in any domain of life (emotional, physical, intellectual and spiritual).
How the formation of a coach looks like?
This profession has a multidisciplinary nature. Coaches come from different professions and different academic studies and personal interests. That is why you can find a diverse offer: Sports, family, personal, professional, health, etc. Coaching. Many independent schools offer coaching workshops and diplomas. Every day, there are more universities having Coaching in their Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees offer. In my case, after taking training in Coaching, I decided to expand my studies through a master’s degree at the University of Barcelona. There, we receive theoretical training based on philosophical, epistemological, theoretical and methodological foundations. Exploring Coaching through existentialist and phenomenological philosophy, constructivism (social), humanism and positive psychology. Then, we move to practice, conducting 1-1 and group coaching sessions.
Does a coach have to be certified?
Although Coaching is not a government-regulated discipline (such as psychology, or medicine) it is regulated by leading global organizations in the field such as the ICF. Being certified by an association like the one mentioned is recommended because it offers credibility to the practice. The certification ensures that as a professional you meet key capabilities that every coach needs. Besides, requires the coach to receive constant training in his/her area. To apply for certification, a coach needs education and experience doing sessions. And, here is where I’m at the moment. I am Coach as I completed the master degree on Coaching and Self Leadership by the University of Barcelona which is supported by the ICF.
What is NOT Coaching?
Usually, coaching sessions are confused with psychotherapies. The coach may or may not be a psychologist. As I said before, a Coach can be an expert in other academic and/or professional fields. Therefore, in the coaching sessions, there is no therapist-patient relationship. A coach does not treat pathologies. When a client shows signs of psychological conflicts due to professional ethics, he or she should refer the client to the appropriate professional.
In coaching the relationship between coach and coachee is one of equals. It is not based on giving advice and saying what needs to be done. With his/her expertise, the coach motivates the coachee to learn and unlearn instead of teaching. The client does not learn from the coach, he learns from himself. The coachee is the one who decides what topic brings to the table, establishes objectives, the commitments he wants to acquire and the actions to be concretized.
Finally, a coaching process does not consist of unlimited sessions. The process is defined in the discovery session with a specific number of agreed sessions, the definition of a topic to work, responsibilities for each party, and ends with clear goals and actions to be achieved by client.
Do I need to have a vocation to be a coach?
I think so. The relationship that is created between a coach and a coachee is one of total empathy and trust. Therefore, it is essential to love what you do and not lose that genuine interest in accompanying the client in their learning process where judgment has no place. Also, I believe is important that the coach has experienced a process of self-knowledge through coaching as well. It generates connection, and respect for his/ her practice, and clients. The coach puts his own learning at the service of others.
To summarize a coaching process can generate a personal transformation from dissatisfaction or restlessness. Coachee’s road has challenges, but also allies being the first one his/her coach. Traveling the journey he/she will experience moments of consciousness, and an impact not only internal but also with his/her surroundings. Therefore, Coaching does work!
Would you like to experience a Coaching session? Do you want to expand your comfort zone, your scope of action? Do you want to discover how possibilities begin to be revealed that you did not imagine existed before? Contact me