When you think about Life Coaching, it is unusual to think that it can help with Mental Health challenges, but it can. Coaching is not a substitute for counselling. However, it is important to address your traumas through counselling first. Life Coaching can then be an incredible therapy to help you manage your challenges better.
My Life Coaching and Mental Health experience
When I was healing from depression, I took to many different therapies to help me through. I wanted to find a way of managing my challenges without taking medication. This does not mean that I am against people taking medication. It was just not the path for me.
I am sharing this with you because when we think about working on ourselves, we can sometimes think that there is only one magic solution. However, the truth is, you need a combination of solutions. They need to not only make sense to you but they need to keep helping you overcome your challenges for the long term.
Choosing the right therapies for your Mental Health
The right combination of therapies can be extremely powerful and transformative. This is why I have created such a unique offering in my coaching practice – which is often very difficult to describe until you work with me.
The therapies that helped me
- Travel – leaving my day to day helped me gain clarity in my work and personal life
- Spirituality – connecting back to myself, learning about what makes me happy and what I want for my life. Gratitude.
- Counselling (CBT) – helped me work through old wounds and understand that they are not relevant to me today and how to cope with them in my adult life
- Coaching & NLP – moved me forward from my learnings. They helped me create solutions that made sense to me. The therapies helped me understand what I’m good at, my good experiences in life and apply those to any challenges. This helped me to create the life that I aspired to have and to enjoy it in the process, not just at the finish line.
- Meditation – for peaceful understanding of my thoughts.
- Nutrition – to ensure my health was at an optimum.
- Environment – I would walk regularly for at least an hour to help de-stress and appreciate life around me more.
- Meaningful connections – with the people who made me feel good to be around them and for me to give back to them too.
My Life Coaching and Mental Health journey
During my training to becoming a coach it was necessary for me to include so many of these therapies in my practice. I wanted to combine them into creating my unique offering. I naturally have good intuition, I can relate to people easily, I have good communications skills, I am patient, non judgemental and empathetic. My training taught me so much about understanding the person I am coaching and their view of the world. Doing this enabled me to not impose my personal opinions on to them (which is a common misconception of coaching.)
How I apply Life Coaching to Mental Health
For every client that I work with, it is most important that I can help them gain clarity and direction in their work and personal lives. That I can help them navigate the goals they have for themselves. When life becomes sticky, when we are unable to push through with our goals, this is when Life Coaching is most effective. Most importantly, this is when your mental wellbeing can be supported so that you do not exacerbate any existing challenges. It helps you to protect your mental wellbeing by taking action and taking the control back.
Working with a Life Coach for Mental Health
It takes courage and commitment to choose to work with a coach because we will make you uncomfortable. We will be helping you make changes in your behaviour so that you can achieve what you want from your life. However, when you work with a coach who is also an advocate for supporting your mental wellbeing, you will become even more resilient. You will be able to adapt your learnings more sustainably so that they fit in with your specific needs.
How Life Coaching can help Mental Health
I personally think that Life Coaching and mental health work together seamlessly but I can also understand how many people may not see the connection. Within my practice, you can work on any type of goal be it changing career or finding love, managing your anxiety or moving past trauma. My secret is that in order to achieve any goal, we need to reflect on your life as a whole. This includes your morning routine, through to the quality of your relationships and your physical health. By reviewing everything that makes up your wellbeing, we can find the disconnections. We can work through any mindset challenges. And we can get laser focussed on what it means for you to achieve these goals.
Life Coaching is not a substitute for Counselling
Something which is extremely important and must be highlighted is that I practice safe-guarding. I have a supervisor therefore my work is supported by a senior qualified coach. I will always refer clients to other services like counselling if I think they need that support first. Depending on where you are on a journey with counselling, coaching can work as part of your treatment plan but this would need to be approved with your therapist. I am extremely mindful of the people I work with and I will only ever work with you if I think I can. If not, I will refer you to other services either from our initial discovery call or during our contract.
The difference between coaching and counselling is that with the latter, you will be working through deep-rooted trauma that coaching is not qualified to handle. Some coaches are also counsellors so in this case, this is fine but it’s important to know what your coach is qualified to do.
Life Coaching for the prevention of Mental Health challenges
I must stress that I help in the prevention of mental health challenges. By helping you navigate your work and personal life because we view your life as a whole. Everything is connected therefore working with me, you can achieve wellbeing both physically and mentally. At the same time, you can achieve the goal you came to achieve.
You can view the mental health support as a *bonus* of working with me.
Puja K McClymont | Certified Life Coach in London and NLP Practitioner
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