What is coaching?

The best way to find out is to try it!

And here are a couple of definitions of coaching:

1. The International Coach Federation has this to say:

Professional coaching is an interactive process that helps individuals and organizations improve their performances and achieve extraordinary results. Professional coaches work with clients in all areas including business, career, finances, health and relationships. As a result of professional coaching, clients set better goals, take more action, make better decisions, and more fully use their natural strengths.

Coaching is an ongoing relationship which focuses on clients taking action toward the realization of their visions, goals or desires. Coaching uses a process of inquiry and personal discovery to build the client’s level of awareness and responsibility and provides the client with structure, support and feedback. The coaching process helps clients both define and achieve professional and personal goals faster and with more ease than would be possible otherwise.’

2. And Laura Whitworth, co-founder of The Coaches Training Institute (my training school) and co-author of Co-Active Coaching (Davies-Black, 1998) says this:

‘Coaching works for many reasons that overlap and intertwine, but one of the strongest threads in this weave is accountability. It is often the accountability alone that draws people to coaching. They may be competent and successful in many phases of their lives, but there is one area where they have found they cannot make the changes they want to make alone. They’re just not getting it done, and they want the structure of a partnership to help them do the thing that is hard to do.

How many times in your life have you said you were going to do something, and then not done it because nobody else would know the difference? Just the simple act of telling your plan to another person raises the stakes. On a freezing January morning, you might pull the covers back over your head rather than go to the health club alone. But if you’ve promised to meet someone there at 7:00 A.M., there is a much better chance you’ll actually get your chilly butt out of bed and go.’