Fiona Bee is a life coach based on the Kapiti Coast. She explains some key features of life coaching:
LPM: What is a life coach?
FB: A life coach helps you to find out what you really want out of your life. What is most important to you and what short and long term goals you want to achieve. Next, a life coach will help you design a plan – a road map to success - whatever that may look like to you. Finally they will work through your perceived barriers, help with any obstacles you come across and be there to cheer you on and celebrate your success.
LPM: What 'isn't' a life coach?
FB: Life Coaching is profoundly different from therapy, consulting, mentoring, or professional advice. The coaching process works by examining what is going on right now, discovering what your obstacles or challenges might be, and choosing a course of action to make your life be what you want it to be.
LPM: How can having a life coach help someone?
FB: Think of a top level athlete. They have specialist coaches in many areas to help them develop their techniques, build up their skills, kick them in the butt when they need it but also be their biggest fan. A life coach should do the same. We weren't born with an instruction manual, so why not seek expert help and support if you need it.
LPM: How did you get into life coaching?
FB: Have been a singing teacher for many years, I found I spent a large percentage of my time building students' confidence (and of course skill set also) and decided in a 2am moment of inspiration that if that's what I was doing - and loving - why not train properly and make a job out of a passion?
LPM: What tools does life coaching offer people?
FB: People often look for a quick fix tool kit that will help them sort out their lives. Like any quick fix these will rarely stick, so if that's what a coach is offering please stay well away. A good coach should help you get to know yourself, be honest with yourself, and support and assist you to develop a life plan and a way to deal with your self sabotage techniques. Once a good coach is finished working with you, unless anything huge changes in your life you shouldn't have to go back, EVER! You have all the answers you need inside yourself, you might just need a nudge in the right direction here and there.
LPM: What kind of people usually get life coaches?
FB: Anyone at all. My clients tend to fit into one of two categories. The first, people who have a goal or change they want to achieve but don't know how. The second group are those who know something in their lives needs adjusting or rebalancing but are too close to be able to see where to start.
LPM: What kind of people would benefit the most from having a life coach?
FB: Those who are ready to change and can commit time to themselves for self development. There are business or corporate coaches, health and wellbeing coaches, career coaches, sports coaches and more. There is something for everyone.
LPM: How much does getting a life coach cost?
FB: It differs hugely from coach to coach. Most should be willing to meet or at least speak with you via the phone for an initial session. It is crucial you follow your gut and choose the one who resonates for you. They should be able to provide you with their costs at this time.
Sometimes in life, we feel there are walls. We have goals and we want to reach them but we are not really sure what is standing in our way. I would like to try a life coach to see if I can kick some bad habits and develop some new good ones! It seems as though a life coach helps you reach your goals - whether they be personal or professional.
Fiona explains how it is important to do lots of research first and find someone who you believe you can build rapport with. Coaching is still not something that is standardised in New Zealand so it is important to check out your potential coaches qualifications, experience and don't be afraid to ask for references.
After meeting with Fiona, I think that everyone could benefit from having a life coach!