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Life Coach Vs. Therapist

Updated: Feb 17, 2023




U.S Happiness Rate

In a recent study conducted by The University of Chicago, the data found that only 14% of Americans are clinically considered "Happy" - (This data included all the Americans on prescribed Antidepressants.) - The University of Chicago


When it comes to life coaching, a common misconception is that it is therapy in disguise – or even worse – therapy from an unlicensed practitioner.


In reality, life coaching is truly its own unique service.


It is designed to help even the most ambitious achievers meet their desired outcomes and bring them fulfillment and success in all areas of life.


Below are some of the main similarities and differences between a life coach vs. therapist and a simple guide for which service may be right for you:



 



What is Therapy?



According to the American Psychiatric Association, psychotherapy, or counseling, is a way to help people with a broad variety of mental illnesses and emotional difficulties.


Problems helped by psychotherapy include difficulties in coping with daily life; the impact of past trauma, medical illness, or loss, like the death of a loved one; and specific mental disorders, like clinical depression or Panic Disorder.


Therapy works on resolving past issues to more stable future.



What is Life Coaching?


The International Coaching Federation defines Coaching as a wellness professional trained to maximize personal and professional potential.


Life Coach works on clarifying goals, identify the obstacles holding you back, and coming up with strategies to overcome each obstacle as you take control of your life and attain greater fulfillment in relationships, spirituality, careers, and day-to-day lives.



Life coach: solution oriented || creates direction, focuses on present and future, develops potential.


Therapist: problem oriented || diagnoses the problem, focuses on past, develops healing












What Are The 4 Main Differences?



#1 || DIFFERENCE ONE: THE FOCUS


  • Therapist/Counselor: Focuses on why specific behavioral patterns occur


  • Life Coach: Focuses on how to work toward an outcome/goal (mental, physical, spiritual, financial, relationship, etc.)




#2 || DIFFERENCE TWO: GOAL OF THE PROGRAM


  • Therapist/Counselor: a goal of mental health as it aims to have a deep understanding of behaviors and patterns


  • Life Coach: a goal of getting you “unstuck” with the aim of strategic action to experience results and get you out of the pattern




#3 || DIFFERENCE THREE: SESSION LAYOUT



Therapist vs Life Coach

Session Layout

​Therapist

Life Coach

typically one hour

not timed - focuses more on leaving with result (anywhere from 45 min - 2.5 hours)

done in an office

a balance of in the office and outside (we go hiking, surfing, exercise, etc. with our clients)

less structured and free form

more structured and customized person to person

led by conversation

led by focused goals, actionable strategies and visible growth





WE Hope You ENJOY THIS ARTICLE!


If you want to get more joy, confidence, and clarity on the next chapter of your life, just apply here.




 




#4 || DIFFERENCE FOUR: TIME FRAME


  • Therapist/ Counselor: long term commitment (a few years - even life), on going with no determined end point


  • Life Coach: short term commitment (Our program lasts 4 - 12 sessions). We set clients up with a defined action plan and direction to reach their goals while developing the process and skills they need to coach themselves upon graduating.




What Are The Main Similarities?



Both practices work to enable clients to make positive changes in their lives and become more productive. While therapists diagnose and treat from a healthcare perspective, not all therapy clients are ill; many healthy people seek the services of both therapists and life coaches. Therapists may work with specific results in mind, such as the cessation of a particular problematic behavior.



When To Seek A LIFE COACH Vs. Therapist?


The decision is very personal when seeking a life coach vs. a therapist.


A helpful metaphor is to imagine yourself preparing to climb a mountain. You could either hire an expert sherpa guide for your expedition or a doctor.


If you were in physical or mental danger, if you even attempted the climb, a sherpa and guide wouldn’t do you any good.


It is necessary to have a baseline level of good health to begin the climb. In this case, you should see the doctor.


However, if you’re overall healthy and need someone to help ignite the motivation to start making moves, creating a successful climbing strategy, learning the best tools to take with you on the climb, and mapping out the accurate directions and greatest path to get you to the top, the sherpa guide is the best bet.


This example is similar to Coaching vs. Counseling.


The therapist is the doctor. They get you well enough to take on significant challenges in your life by exploring your mental and emotional well-being.


The life coach is the sherpa guide. They have expert knowledge of your climb and can help you reach the summit.



A LIFE COACH OFFERS GUIDANCE BY HELPING CLIENTS:



Clarify and achieve personal and professional goals


Increase confidence and self purpose


Create life / relationship / business / education plans + next steps


Work to improve communication + social skills


Learn tools to reduce stress + anxiety


Achieve a work/life balance


Expand consciousness + connection + spirituality


Identify Roadblocks + build bridges to success


Start your new life or grow the one you’re in


Turn the page to the future you desire



STILL TORN ON WHICH IS BEST FOR YOU



THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE In WIDE AWAKE COACHING?



One of the biggest differences in our Life Coaching method is that we combine both Life Coaching and Traditional Therapy.


Through years of researching, certification, and practicing the leading methods of therapy and coaching; we sought to combine the best of the best practices in an all encompassing experience that can be customized for you.




WIDE AWAKE COACHING

Typical Therapy

Typical Life Coaching

​Life Coaching

Mindset Coaching

CBT

​❌

Hypnotherapy

Music Therapy

​❌

Neuro Linguistic Programming

​❌

EFT Tapping

​❌

T.A.M.B.B.E.R

Breathwork Therapy

Neurotracking

No Time Limit Sessions

​❌

​❌

​Online Masterclasses

​❌

Bio Identical Hormone Therapy

​❌

​Cryotherapy

Infrared Sauna Therapy

Himalayan Salt Therapy

Nutritionist

Play Therapy (out of the office - hiking, surfing, fishing, walking, kayaking, etc.)

​Modern Success Psychology Tools (Joyride Journal, Nightingale Notepad, guided meditations)

​❌





If you want to see how our innovative coaching can dramatically improve joy, confidence, and clarity in your Your Life, simply apply here:










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