Many of us feel dissatisfied with our lives. When the media is constantly telling us we can “have it all,” we can be left wondering why we don’t. Or, we ponder why we don’t feel like we do. Sometimes this unsatisfied feeling inspires people to make a change in their lives, but they often don’t know where to start. A life coach can help them point the lost to the right path and guide them along the way.
Cassie Schuh, of Zaptastic Professional Coaching in Appleton, says, “Life coaches help people in identifying what is keeping them feeling stuck so that they can proactively figure out how to move forward.”
That’s not to say life coaches tell you what you should be doing with your life. Instead, Schuh says, “As the client, you know what it is that you want, and you know how to get there. It’s just getting clarity around what it is that you want and verbalizing it.”
Lynn Mulvey of Wild Meadows Life Coaching in Appleton also stresses the importance of a client-driven approach. “We believe that the client really has the best knowledge of where they need to be in their lives, and that they direct that.”
This is probably the biggest difference between life coaches and counselors. Although both Schuh and Mulvey come from social work backgrounds, and Mulvey worked as a therapist, they both maintain life coaching is very different from therapy.
“Counseling and therapy is great for hearing processes,” adds Schuh. “You just need to verbalize and get the emotions out in order to be able to figure things out and to heal from whatever event led you to counseling or therapy.”
Schuh adds, “Coaching takes a look at where you are right now and ‘What is it that I need to move forward in my life?'”
Mulvey explains therapy approaches people from more of a medical model – there’s something wrong that needs to be fixed. She adds, “In life coaching, it’s just looking at a person who is wanting to make a change.”
Therapists and life coaches make a living helping people. Mulvey says she charges an hourly rate, which is then set up as packages or as individual sessions, depending on what the client needs. “Those rates are in line, typically, with what a therapist would charge,” says Mulvey.
Schuh prefers working one-on-one with her clients. She may recommend a series of coaching sessions.
Although she prefers working individually with her clients, Schuh also works with some groups and offers workshops. “That is a great tool to be able to offer a coaching program with, that’s a lower-cost alternative to the client, but allows me to leverage my time and help people more people in one setting. I’m starting to get into doing women’s retreats as well.”
This article appeared in the May 2015 issue of Women Magazine