I had no idea what the difference between a life coach and therapist meant. Aren’t they both supposed to help you with getting your shit together? The short answer is yes, but there’s a ton of reasons why seeing a life coach could be beneficial for you – especially when creating a more focused plan of action.
Late in 2018 I started visiting a life coach every Sunday. I felt stuck and as if my education and passions were a waste. When I started, I held back and answered questions how I thought made me sound better. I answered to make me sound like I had bigger goals.
I quickly learned that by admitting my fears, vulnerabilities, and what I TRULY want was the only way to get the most out of my sessions.
My coach made me look at my feelings about the things bothering me to understand exactly what was upsetting me. He helped me try to see things that I could change to do more of what I loved. For example, at work I could ask to take on more writing responsibilities or do more to show my talents and in turn redefine my role. He allowed me to see that I could change, but that my ultimate goal was to find more things that aligned better with my passions.
The goals each session varied. I’d have to keep an eye on moments where I was a low energy level and how I could change it to be better. Also, I saw that I tend to focus on things that bring me down. I rarely was thinking of ways to improve or use a bad situation to change for the better.
My life coach was able to help me see things clearly with what I was afraid to get into on my own. Here’s how a life coach might benefit you.
Difference between a Therapist and a Life Coach
A therapist is a licensed professional who treats mental health, relationships, grief or issues pertaining to past/traumatic events. They’re there to help throughout any of your stages in life, good and bad. They’re someone who can help you process feelings or understand the “why” to things that are happening. A therapist is ideal for anyone as they’re incredibly helpful with all areas of life.
A life coach helps to focus on the present and future. They are able to help you set attainable goals while holding yourself accountable for making the changes you want in your life. They will ask questions that might challenge you, but that will get you closer to achieving what you want in life.
I personally think it’s beneficial to speak with both. A therapist can help you immensely and be someone that you trust to help. A life coach is great for helping you take action by changing your perspective and setting attainable goals.
1 – Help change your perspective to better understand what you want
Maybe you want a job that makes you happy, but you’re putting a huge emphasis on the pay more than the joy of the job. Why? Well money is necessary to live. But what about happiness? Why is that not the top priority?
A life coach focuses on understanding who you are and showing you that your future is up to you to create. They help you see through your excuses and fear to finally take control of your life.
They will show you that doing the bare minimum is doing more harm than good. However, doing too much could be hurting you too. Everyone is different.
You will also begin to realize that you’re in control of your thoughts. You can either let something destroy you or encourage you to improve the next time around. They can help you shift your negative thoughts to begin thinking in a way that empowers you instead of bringing you down.
A life coach will change your perspective to see that growth should always be happening. With growth comes new opportunities to be the best version of yourself – with the past staying in the past. You need to find ways to get outside your comfort and make the most of life.
2 – Create a plan of action to go after your goals
What’s amazing about a life coach is that they want to see you achieve actionable goals. They want you to create the change you’re craving.
To do so, they want you to take control of your actions. By doing so, it can get you closer to where you want to be. A life coach will help you create a plan of action to get there.
For me, it happened by thinking about things at would make me happy in the present. Imagining an ideal situation and understanding that I could get that if I put in the work.
My coach explained to me that I was responsible for holding myself back. I didn’t want to go for opportunities. I made every excuse why it wouldn’t work. Doing this because of fear prevented me from ever advancing to be better or achieve more.
With that, he encouraged me to essentially think about what I want. I couldn’t be afraid of failing or not getting anywhere because I was doing more harm by not trying. I learned that you do what you’re afraid to and realize it’s exactly what you needed.
A life coach is a great way to help you reach a goal because they can plan with you to prepare you for what you don’t want to do. They’re going to be there cheering you on or even there for you when you don’t land the job.
Your coach will be there to help you achieve great things just by showing you that you’re capable of doing so once you get outside your comfort zone.
3 – Show you that courage sometimes happens after actions
One important lesson I learned was that you don’t always get courage to do something. You typically do it scared and the courage happens during or after.
You learn while you’re going for it. If you don’t get where it is you want to be, then you learn from these perceived failures. No matter what, you’ll gain more confidence and courage by actually doing what you’re afraid to do.
Hearing this, it made me extremely happy to find the podcast Do It Scared. The episodes are about all different topics, but ultimately that everyone is trying to figure everything out without knowing what they’re doing.
What you’ll notice from listening is that the ones who give it their all and make changes are the ones that achieve great things. The people that go for their dreams completely terrified or broken reach amazing success.
No matter who you are or what you’re doing, we are capable of creating changes. Do It Scared lets you know that you’re not alone in thinking you can’t, but that you have to go for it if you’re serious about your goals.
4 – Teach you how to stop sabotaging yourself from good opportunities
There were a bunch of times that I ignored or turned down an opportunity out of fear. I thought I wasn’t talented or ready to take it on, even though the opportunity was being offered.
A life coach can help you set up a plan, gain more courage and confidence which in turn helps your potential. A life coach shows you that when you take action, you can get closer to your goals. You can achieve great success just like anybody else (although you should never be comparing!)
A life coach can be extremely beneficial. He or she will learn about you and understand how to challenge you to take action to reach your potential. So often we hold ourselves back out of comfort or fear of the unknown. A life coach will help you realize that the best way to get where you want to be is to go for what you want.
If you’re interested in connecting with a life coach, please be careful
Have tried a life coach? What was your experience like?