Coaching for stress and depression?
So how - and why - does coaching for stress, depression or relationships help instead of counselling?
Counselling is a 'talking therapy' for the client and a 'listening' process for the counsellor; reflecting back in this situation is the talking that the counsellor does and is required to do. It sounds easy but actually is a skill, hence the effectiveness I see regularly with person-centred counselling.
Coaching is more proactive (counselling is 'active' too..). Taking steps towards a goal, making things happen and moving forward rather than 'looking back' as lots of suggestions made about counselling.
True. Coaching looks forward more than back (we do review progress, achievements and celebrate them, so part of the process is to look back and see where we came from and how we got to where we are).
Hence, coaching gets people out of the dark place they might be into lighter, brighter situations they can help to create - or fully create! Now, for people in a vulnerable, uncertain and often lost place, that can seem daunting! To actually have energy to create, the effort required to create something new…
But it actually isn’t any more effort than you have to make to survive each day, and is far more effective!
'Survival' takes up a lot of effort, you know! Stress and depression both have elements of distraction from day to day needs and relationships, from 'stuff' that needs doing like eating, working, school run or more.
But our mind takes over and does many things by rote whilst simultaneously dwelling on ways to escape the dark! This brings physical stress from chemicals in the body and cognitive impairment (distractions) from moving forward to what your mind probably deems 'potential danger' from more stressors that will be introduced to you through living life! Through existing …
Overcoming those stressors and defences takes effort, yes, but longer term for sure it is more effective and useful and saves untold 'meaningless effort' later on!
So how would coaching work for stress? And for depression? And for back to work after an absence too?
The process is the same so can be adapted to any circumstances, any goal or objective. It's flexible like that!
Look at where you are, look at where you want and need to be, and when. Then together plan small, manageable steps to build an easily achievable action plan that we review at subsequent sessions. We recognise achievements and even celebrate them! There is something new for stress or depression - celebration!
Another aspect of depression at least might be the secondary gain (coaching jargon I know!) of being cared for, looked after and fewer demands and expectations from those around you. Well, that can't last forever! It takes its toll on them too remember which cannot be good for either of you!
So with coaching we look at the resources you have, too, and what you need to develop. In these situations then, that would be support, options and experience, and develop simple action steps like building purpose and willpower.
Through the coaching process, you may or may not find the light bulb moment of the underlying reason for depression, whilst in counselling that is the purpose and intention so that you can then make informed choices in future. With coaching, this can be 'bypassed' by looking forward, not back, but the outcomes will be there and will be effective too.
About the author
Julie Crowley, career & business coach in Saddleworth & Manchester, aims to motivate action and empower to be who you want to be. Getting you where you want to be, living the life you want to live. Happier & healthier, moving steadily towards your goals. Life coaching changed my life & I know it can change yours 'for a better personal future' too.
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