Get a life coach and change your life

accreditation
Image: Getty Images
Image: Getty Images

The era of the self-help book is making way for the new kid in motivation town: the life coach. Success seekers agree these could provide the tools to get to the top, and there’s validity in their arguments. But why does anyone need life coaching?

“If you want to change your life and need the guidance to do so, then life coaching is the way to go. Coaches are more focused on your goals – where you want to be and help you get there,” explains Dr Nadine Dunn.

Another life coach Tumi Moloto of TM Change Consulting adds that a life coach will, “Unearth your talent, understand your strengths and show you how to leverage on them to achieve your goals.”

You might ask how the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Bill Clinton and other prominent people stay on track and in control of their personal lives, ambitions and dreams. The secret they all share is Tony Robbins, a well-known life coach who says that people come to him when they’re in a slump and need to turn things around. For instance, tennis star Serena Williams calls him to align her drive with what she wants to accomplish, helping her to break through and conquer what’s tripping her up.

Finding a coach

Your life coach ultimately helps you find and open your door to success, so finding someone you’re compatible with and who you trust is key. Coach and owner of Shift Me Coaching, Lindelwa Khoza, says that just like any other partnership in life, finding a coach should be about chemistry. “Be prepared to design the partnership with the coach. Think of a strong partnership that you currently have in your work or life. Look at how you built that relationship and what is important to you about it. You will want to build those same things into a coaching relationship.”

Here are more tips:

• Shop around to find your match. Interview more than one coach to determine “what feels right” in terms of the chemistry. Coaches are accustomed to being interviewed, and an introductory conversation of this type is usually free of charge.

• Look for stylistic similarities and differences between you and the coach, and consider how these might support your growth as an individual.

• Discuss your goals within the context of the coach’s speciality or the coach’s preferred way of working with an individual.

• Talk with the coach about what to do if you ever feel things are not going well. Make some rules upfront on how to handle questions or problems.

• Remember that coaching is a partnership, so be assertive when talking with the coach about any problems or concerns you may have.

• Besides chemistry and compatibility, Moloto adds that it’s important to make sure the person you choose is legit and not an imposter. “There are so many people claiming to be coaches. Always look for one who’s part of the various associations to know they’re accredited. We have Coaches and Mentors of South Africa (COMENSA), and there’s also the International Coach Federation (ICF). These professional bodies make sure the coaches are trained, have specific competencies and abide by certain standards.”

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