Psychology is evolving and increasingly it is moving towards a more positive paradigm with a focus on developing our potential for happiness. Rather than looking into the past and unraveling unmet needs from childhood, coaching is directed towards the future and living a quality life, one in which we achieve our dreams and goals. People seeking personal evolution and ways to live their life more fully do not need psychological counseling; they need a life coach.
Coaching is not about pathology, diagnosis, and the treatment of human frailties; it is about the enhancement of human potential and possibility. Its higher purpose is not to repair what has been damaged, but to cultivate the genius that resides within the human mind and the generosity that resides within the human spirit. When you empower people and help them discover what they can do – instead of focusing on what is wrong and what they can’t do – you improve their overall mental health and the quality of life,
There is a Chinese proverb that reads:
The superior doctor prevents sickness;
The mediocre doctor attends to impending sickness;
The inferior doctor treats actual sickness.
One of the most interesting results of the kind of empowering change that can occur through a coaching relationship is the potential to prevent dysfunction, or even render past dysfunction inconsequential. By Chinese definition, this is the mark of superior medicine.
The coaching relationship is both future directed and more systematic than a traditional counseling relationship. In addition to identifying goals and barriers to achieving these goals, it tends to revolve around developing the following nine mental skills which were originally conceived in sports and professional coaching arenas:
- Choose and maintain a positive attitude.
- Maintain a high level of self-motivation.
- Set high, realistic goals.
- Deal effectively with people.
- Use positive self-talk.
- Use positive mental imagery.
- Manage anxiety effectively.
- Manage emotions effectively.
- Maintain concentration.
The Performance Pyramid
Level I (1-3) These mental skills constitute a broad base for attaining long-term goals, life long learning, and sustaining happiness. They are needed on a day-by-day basis for long periods of time, often months and years.
Level II (4-6) These skills are used to prepare for the performance and achievement of our goals.
Level III (7-9) These skills are used during actual performance behavior and in day to day living .
The pyramid above represents the relationship of the nine skills to one another. Each of the higher levels incorporates and is based upon the skills of the preceding levels.
Developing these skills whether tailored to a sports or professional performance or for enhanced living will allow the coaching client to achieve superior mental health and a better quality of life.
To read more about my coaching practice, please check out my coaching website.