The New York Times published an article entitled: “Should a Life Coach Have a Life First?”
This article is about a 27 year old part time actress who became a life coach to help finance her acting career. Although the article appeared to be a puff piece, and frequently inaccurate, it encouraged over 233 comments that were much more interesting, most often better written and very revealing.
The Comments To The NY Times Article Were Priceless
The Times closed the comments, which I feel was foolish, because they were much better than the original article, and closing them eliminated additional reasons to return to the site. The comments addressed these questions:
Are life coaches controversial? You bet!
Confused? Very much!
Con Artists? Too often!
Hypocritical? Again, too often?
Respected? Not often!
Samples of the many pointed, humorous, and worthwhile comments. For example:
“ReadingBetweenTheLines” exposed the hypocrisy of the “Master Coach University.”
Doug Wilson discussed how coaching certifications do not make a better coach.
Lori describes how coaches manipulate and create fear, after using 3 coaches, but then admitted she liked coaches “who do not judge.”
Then “Dogged Optimist” asked “I’m confused. Aren’t all these coaching functions part of the role of friends and family?”
Shay Kostabi’s response was on target, “Life Coaches have the ability to offer an objective point of view, completely detached from personal opinions stemmed from the emotional connections and past history that Friend and Family may have!” but it got lost in all of the noise.
Life Coaching Is Developing A Negative Reputation
Because life coaching is misunderstood and poorly done. These comments exposed the confusion about what real life coaches do and do not do, and sadly the many undesirable encounters with people claiming to be life coaches. It’s no wonder that life coaching is getting a bad rep.
I am Not a life coach, I do Not train life coaches, and I feel the life coaching industry is a mess, even though we actively participate in the same industry.
These comments have been invaluable to me, because they explain a lot of negative reactions to a life coaching, but they also confirm there continues to be some superb and dedicated life coaches out there.
Life coaching works extremely well when done right
Being coached is not right for everyone. Just like being taught German is not right for everyone. But when people engage their life coach under the six conditions for successful coaching they will generate remarkable life and career improving results.
Getting the truth out about life coaching is getting more difficult. The increasing confusion about life coaching along with the louder negative reactions to encounters with life coaching imposters is making it more difficult to recognize the truth about life coaching.
My company, The Coach Connection, has been educating people about life coaching for over 11 years but the negative noise has been increasing every year. But we will learn from these comments to clarify the misunderstandings that these comments exposed.
Mariette Jansen says
Thanks for sharing such wonderful article!
Maintaining work life balance is different for both men and women based on their situations. Men like to relax on their couch for a while till they decompress from the stress. whereas for women it is almost impossible to find some spare time due to all the household responsibilities.
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