This is by far one of the most frequently asked questions that I am asked!
There are various schools of thought on the differences between the two, sometimes controversially so.
Having received training and worked with clients in both areas, below is my own personal definition on the differences:
Counselling: Good counselling is person centred. The counsellor holds space, and facilitates the client to move into their own understanding of their issue or difficulty so that healing can take place.
Coaching: The client is already at the point of being ready to internalise an issue or difficulty, and embrace change in their life. They are keen to move from A to B, but may have some obstacles and/or limiting beliefs that prevent them from doing so. A life coach will support, motivate, and guide the client to understand various points of tensions so that they can self-direct towards their new goal(s) and aspirations.
When choosing which kind of support is best for you, it is useful to consider where you are in terms of the spectrum of your own personal hero’s journey. Please see diagram below:
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