You May Know What You Want, But THIS is What You NEED (Episode 101)
What is the difference between a counselor and a coach? Why would I need this for my family? It's a valid question, and one we may not even realize we need to address. Yet, as a relationships coach, I not only want to equip my clients with powerful questions, but educate each of you on when - and why - this may be a next step for you.
In this episode and post below, I'll walk you through what Counseling and Coaching mean, plus some powerful questions to determine whether this is your better investment over that next Disney trip.
Who am I?
I’m a relationships coach. I help growing families move from chaos and reaction mode to clear intention and healthy relationships both at work and at home. I do this by coaching, podcasting and online resources so they can move past communication to true connection. My clients say they now feel less stress, have more grace and compassion for others, and are excited about being in the driver's seat to create the family - and life - they love to come home to.
I’ve worked so much on the business side - helping entrepreneurs navigate knowing themselves and their strengths, market and sell, hiring, understanding their clients…and I thought it would be so great to just share all of this with families as well.
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Business and Family aren't different compartments. What happens in one arena directly affects what happens in the other
Ultimately, it boils down to a functional approach to your whole life. It's not compartmentalized. As you are most likely well aware, when you are off at work, it affects how you are at home and vice versa.
What do you mean by "functional Approach?"
We’ve seen a shift in our society as we lean toward function medicine - the whole mind/body/soul approach around how it’s all interconnected. I’ve shared about functional education - how it’s all-encompassing, life-long, and not compartmentalized into subjects.
Addressing a functional approach here means that life isn't just blocked off into segments. Now, my friend Holly Scherer has a great layout of the different areas of your life here and in her blog post on it:
So what I add it this - yes, these are all areas to home in on. Yet each of these affects the other. It's not that you can ignore one area and flow. It's a full-life approach. That's why so many coaches have an area of expertise, yet can ultimately just fall into the overall "life coaching" category because they touch on so much.
It's not an Either Or...
What tends to happen is we look at either joy or crisis...and nothing in between. Either you spend the money for entertainment - Disney, the movies, a big vacation, a pool or trampoline. You aren’t scared to purchase for the sake of having fun together.
OR, you spend money on therapy. We have a crisis and we can’t get out of it. In this article, it lays out The Top Ten Reasons Why You Need Family Counseling. A quick breakdown on it is here:
- Blended Family
- Disconnected Family
- Loner Individual - withdrawing from family
- Drama Queen - acting out, possibly a countercultural child
- Secrets that have come out
- Sexual Drought
- Intimacy as Punishment
- Growing Apart
- Holding Grudges
There are many other reasons why people go to counseling, and I have seen first-hand the positive outcomes that can come from hashing it out with a counselor and processing through those pent-up emotions. There was a time that counseling really helped me get unstuck and allowed me to lay down some baggage I carried that was getting overwhelming.
Some additional resources for you
- Have a countercultural kid and you aren't quite sure where to start?
- Feeling completely overwhelmed and stressed out?
- Tired of navigating all the toxic people in your life?
- Feeling like YOU have become that toxic person?
- Looking for my best entrepreneurial resources?
- You're an entrepreneur, but seeking support and community
- Curious what personality style your children are, and they aren't yet five? Check out the "Family DISCovery Playbook"
- High tension in your marriage? Maybe you need to look at how you argue
- Or, pick your battles with your children
So What Is A Counselor?
A counselor helps you to move past what’s holding you back. They will take you through your past history. Where is your pain coming from? Why are you holding onto it? It’s a look backward in order to move forward. Especially in areas of mental health and addiction, counseling is something I highly recommend.
What is a Coach?
We start right here, right now, in this present moment.
Who are you right now, and what do you desire to be?
What is the reality of this time in your life, and how can you create the future you thrive in?
We focus on getting intentional about the steps you need to take to get to your ultimate goal - a thriving business, marriage, family, etc. And we go deep into exactly what that looks like.
It’s laying out the dreams and the expectations, and then creating a clear plan of action to implement it in a step-by-step process. It’s a very forward-thinking process.
Coaching is sometimes the next step from counseling, or it’s what keeps you from needing the counseling in the first place!
What can coaching do for my family?
Coaching can do a lot of things. For families, these are the biggies:
It may not be your Disney trip, but a guarantee it’ll make your Disney trip way more enjoyable.
What do people WANT?
I’m finding my coaching comes from these things people know they want:
- Business -they want to know how to sell/market themselves, how to generate residual income, leverage multiple income streams, and make their business sustainable.
- Understanding personality styles and how to use that in their business through team building, leadership, sales and hiring
- Navigating the entrepreneurial lifestyle and how to manage their time so they aren’t drowning in it
- Learning to manage stress and overwhelm that often comes from taking on too many tasks and falling into the “jack of all trades, master of none” category.
What Do People NEED?
And then that moves them into what they NEED:
- Understanding themselves and building up their confidence - it’s hard to sell when you don’t even believe in yourself. The first step is their own self-awareness and confidence
- Connecting with family members - it’s hard to move forward, especially in the entrepreneurial world, if your family isn’t on board with you. Working on these relationships are not separate from business; they are what can make your business really thrive. You NEED the support from your family.
- Getting proactive in life, and not simply reacting to what is thrown your way - there will always be curveballs coming, but you don’t have to react to every one of them.
- Parenting/Marriage tips and strategies to move from communication to clear connection. It may be bedtime battles, intimacy, or how to handle disagreements in a constructive and helpful way.
Don’t wait and just let it slide until it becomes so much a part of your history
that it takes counseling to break down the baggage of resentment
you’ve been holding onto.
What is the Goal and Intention?
We all have different goals and intentions, and although it may boil down to "happy home, happy life," it goes much deeper than this. And success is going to vary - it's not a perfect "I'm a millionaire, now everything is perfect" solution.
This is what a client laid out to me after working with them: To see the business plans I've made come to fruition. To grow the business into a stable, thriving resource for those we serve. I also intend to take steps toward closer relationships with my family.
And here was some feedback after my first four sessions with my client:
I was frustrated with where I was in my work life. I had experienced success in the past but struggled to see a future I was excited about. I struggled with the weight of depression and unforgiveness and didn't know how to move away from that mindset. The decision to seek out a coach came after more than 2 years of trying to make lasting change on my own.
While I initially thought I just needed business direction, Ashley seemed to hone in on the deeper areas that I was struggling with. Our sessions were interwoven with insights and resources to attack every area I was struggling in. From the first session, her approach and temperament made it easy to open up and be real.
I'm finally on a fresh, new journey and I couldn't be happier! My relationships have all benefitted from this experience and the bitterness I once held has been let go. I'm grateful for everything this experience has initiated in my life. Truly life-changing.
Stacy G - graphic designer, father of 4
It doesn’t always have to start with business, however. It may be straight to the family, like this one:
I’ve told you so many times how much you've helped me. If I had to pinpoint a single thing, I would say that above all, you've taught me to be me—to be confident in who I am, as an individual, a wife, a mom, and more. To make decisions based on what I believe is in my or my family's best interest, not based on what is expected of me (or what I perceive others expect of me).
Tricia P - editor, mother of 2
So much of coaching goes back to powerful questioning -it means not just giving you the answers, but asking the questions that help you to come to a new understanding on your own.
You don’t have to only look at business tweaks to make your life better.
You don’t have to just plan for that next vacation and hope that’s the “fix” for your family.
What is it that would really help your family?
Try asking yourself these questions:
- What are you tolerating?
What are you dreaming about that you haven’t yet done?
- What excites you?
- If we were having this discussion 3 years from today and you were looking back over the 3 years, what has to happen to make you feel comfortable with your progress?
- “What question, if it were answered for you today, would change everything for you?”
Does My Family Need Coaching?
You may need a coach if any of these ring true for you:
Not everyone is in a position to get 1-1 coaching. But make sure it’s not because you haven’t asked these questions. Are you simply not aware of the need here?
Be Proud and Intentional: Get A Coach
This isn’t the same stigma of needing a counselor. Counseling immediately gives the implication of struggle and hard times, of needing therapy in order to recover. It's much needed and I highly respect it, however it's not something you typically broadcast all over.
Coaching, however, is a proactive approach of “upping your game,” so to speak, so it has a whole different feel to it. People are proud to identify their coaches and how it’s helped them in their lives. I’m friends with my clients and enjoy connecting with them even beyond coaching.
Your Weekly Challenge:
Go through the questions above -
What are you tolerating right now?
If nothing changed, would that be okay?
What are you investing in with your family - is it simply entertainment?
Or do you invest in tools and resources that will make that entertainment time even more enjoyable and worthwhile for all? I am passionate that each of us has our own unique strengths that are important to share. You are powerful beyond measure. You make an impact. And so does everyone else in your family. The more you can understand that, know how to interconnect, and have grace, the more your family will thrive. Because ultimately, the uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us.
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