Updated: Feb 16, 2020
When I began the journey of becoming a certified professional coach, I thought coaching was a bit hoaky and that there was no rigor to it. I believed that a coach was just a person giving you advice and the value of the coaching was based on the value of the advice. In other words, getting a good coach was a crapshoot. But I wasn't sure I was ready to invest the time and money to be a "proper" psychologist. So I began the program and discovered thankfully how wrong I was.
Coaching is a powerful mechanism in its own right and iPEC's program, accredited by the ICF, teaches an abundance of structure, methodology, and tools for helping people identify and rewire thinking patterns that keep them stuck so they can create and execute the goals they want. Not one bit of it is about giving advice.
In the 9+ months of training, students helped students pivot ensconced mindsets and look at their situations in a new way that was with less stress, hurt, and fear, and with more excitement, opportunity, and clear possibilities.
Now that I better understand coaching, I believe coaching can help anyone who feels stuck or wants to do/be more. Coaching can release deep rooted limiting beliefs and then go beyond into the realm of self-mastery and excellence. But you have to be willing to be real with where you're at, to have your limiting beliefs challenged, and to be brave enough to believe something more empowering for yourself - which is easier said than done.
It is hard because our brains are great at protecting us. That protection can look like iron-clad reasons why we should play small, limit dreams, and distrust possibilities. These thoughts feels overwhelmingly true - and SAFE. "Of course I can't do this" - our minds say - "and here is the overwhelming evidence that it is true for us."
Your job, with your coaches guidance, is to discover a new truth - and learn that what you thought was true before isn't truth at all.
Progress comes quickly for most people that are coached, but there are many layers to the onion of self-protection and limiting beliefs. Most coaches insist on 10-12 sessions so you get lasting benefits. It takes time to rewire your brain. You've spent years reinforcing these old patterns and there are several roots to them that need to be addressed.
That's also why self-help can feel inspiring but not have concrete results.
That's also why self-help can feel inspiring but not have concrete results. Self-help is great at making you aware that things like gremlins exist, and perhaps point the way to what yours might be, But a coach will show you your particular gremlins in the moment they appear in all their disguises. Once you see them in all their glory, you can start to notice your gremlins on your own and then confront and repurpose them to work FOR you, rather than against you.
Even as a certified professional coach, I need a coach.
Even as a certified professional coach, I need a coach. The knowledge and tools are not enough. You need a safe space to share what is going on for you, an encouraging environment where someone believes in you and your growth, a mirror that shows you your mind from the outside so you can gain awareness, and someone who can challenge your mindset while pointing the way to new empowering beliefs that feel true to you.
After becoming a certified professional coach, I realized an action plan for achieving your goals and the motivation to get you there isn't what you need. It isn't the thing that is holding you back. Instead, it is managing these deep seated beliefs/agreements/protection mechanisms that are doing their job extremely well. When you unravel them, the motivation and next steps are self-evident and in abundance - and you see situations with more clarity and more opportunity.
To anyone who wants to enable yourself to have the things you want in life without all the struggle, who is brave enough to face your inner demons (which is just a primal part of you trying to help and protect you)... if you are ready to leave excuses and resentment behind and see things differently, I highly recommend any coach certified by iPEC.