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Where does counselling stop and coaching begin?

The professional chat rooms have daily conversation about where counselling stops and coaching begins.


In reality all counsellors coach to some degree and I know that many coaches drift into counselling as it is very difficult to 'box up' a human being, dividing emotional content and personal stresses from performance or recovery. The one impacts the other and vice versa of course.


Many helping professionals might benefit from the therapeutic coaching model including teachers, social workers, doctors and therapists of all kinds, in fact any arena where 'a helpful or therapeutic conversation' may occur.


In true coaching fashion, a story helps illustrate:


Lionel Logue, was the speech therapist who was so helpful to George VI. At first, George tried to insist that Logue stop delving into his private life and merely work on the physical problem of the stammer. Logue taught his patient muscle relaxation and breath control techniques, but continued to probe at the possible psychological roots of the stutter. He eventually revealed some of the pressures of his childhood: his tense relationship with his unloving and strict father, the repression of his left handedness, painful childhood metal splints to correct his knock knees, long term physical abuse by his nanny, and the early death of his epileptic younger brother.


If Logue had steered away from the painful emotional content, would the voice coaching have been successful alone? I suspect not.


An executive coach colleague told me 'Someone like me works on the outside of the person and someone like you works on the inside'.


I believe we need to look holistically at our clients (even executives), their outsides and their insides, and how unmet emotional needs can impact many areas, including relationships, work and health. Where a client currently is on the physical and emotional wellbeing continuum will dictate what they want from their therapist or coach at that particular time and in that particular context. The concept of therapeutic coaching seems to be a new paradigm yet therapists are already coaching and coaches are already counselling.


The accredited Therapeutic Coaching Diploma supports those in the helping professions gain effective tools to so they can give the fullest support to their clients.

If you want to acquire really effective therapeutic and coaching skills, take a look at the innovative training offered by Frances Masters at The Integrated Coaching Academy.


Frances Masters is a BACP accredited psychotherapist, coach and trainer

 

 

 

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