Posts Tagged ‘International Coach Federation’
You’ve probably heard it said that you are the sum total of the 7 people you hang out with most. So who do you hang out with most? And, do you like who you are and who you are becoming in that company?
If you want to lose weight, hang out with healthy, fit people. It makes it easier. If you want to be more successful, surround yourself with people who are MORE successful than you are. If you want to be in a fulfilling marriage, hang out with other couples who represent that for you.
Conceptually, this sounds great. But, I think it’s harder than it sounds. I know that the people I spend the most time with actually are my children. When they were little, it was hard for my brain to keep from turning to jello sometimes. As an entrepreneur, I spend most of my time working with clients or in pursuit of new clients. I have to make a conscious effort to put myself in environments that stretch me and to surround myself with people who propel me forward.
Here are 7 Ways to Create a Powerful Peer Group:
1. Be at choice about who you spend your time with. Of course there are important people who you are in relationships with that may not serve your vision of who you are becoming. Choose when to spend your time with them and how much time and energy you want to invest in that relationship. I’m not going to stop hanging out with my kids. But, I am intentional about that time. I love to play games with them, help them with their homework, make meals, go to the movies and just hang out with my kids. But, I don’t play Xbox or WOW with them. You get the idea. I also love my extended family dearly. I come from a long line of women who love with food – lots of delicious food. If I am watching my diet, I need to plan ahead when I attend a family event. It’s also true that I love with food and make regular attempts to kill my loved ones with enchiladas and cheesecake. They need to plan accordingly and enlist my support when they come over.
2. Bring the people in your current peer group up with you. So, in the case of my family, especially my immediate family, I am not going to stop eating with them as a long term solution. But, I can enroll them in eating better with me. Now, I have a peer group that supports me. You can do this with your office staff, your management team, the Little League moms or any of your other friends.
3. Join networking and business development groups or start your own. My favorite business development group for Women Entrepreneurs is The Association of Women Entreprenuers. I am inspired by the motivational and inspirational speakers. I love the mastermind groups. And I cherish the friendships that I have made with like-minded women in pursuit of MORE.
4. Join or start a mastermind group. Be intentional about who you choose to mastermind with. Look for people who compliment you and stretch you. Many coaches and consultants offer the opportunity to mastermind with them for a price. If this is your next teacher, then the price is generally worth it. You can mastermind with me, if you are so inspired.
5. Attend conventions in your field. Conventions are a fabulous opportunity to network with other like-minded professionals who are moving in the same direction that you are and conventions generally offer progressive educational opportunites in your field.
6. Pursue a credential. Most credentialing programs give you education with a peer group, or tribe, built in. One of the tribes that I am proudest to belong to and most stretched and fulfilled by is my CTI Leadership Tribe. My coaching certification, CPCC (Certified Professional Co-Active Coach), also admits me to an amazing, international tribe of coaches and leaders. I continue to be inspired and grown by these associations.
7. Join an association of professionals in your field. As a coach, I belong to The International Coach Federation and The International Coach Federation in Los Angeles. I know I am among “my people” when I attend any ICF event. Know your tribe! If you are a designer, hang out with other designers. If you are a realtor, work with other realtors. These collaborations make us all better at what we do and help us to serve our clients better by bringing up our whole industry.
Whatever you do, do something. You’re success depends on it!
If you want to jump off a bridge, call a therapist. If you want to cross a bridge, call a coach.
People, including a lot of coaches and therapists, don’t really know what the differences are between coaching and therapy. In my opinion, there are many reasons that there is so much confusion. The main reason that I think there is so much confusion is because there is very little regulation on what coaching actually is and many untrained and uncertified coaches don’t necessarily appreciate or respect the boundaries of coaching. In addition to that, therapy has changed dramatically in the past 20 years. Therapy is rarely the “lie on the couch and tell me your feelings” experience that it once was stereotyped as.
So what is coaching and what is therapy? This is such a great question that The International Coach Federation in Los Angeles hosted a program led by coaches and therapists to discuss it this week. And, guess what? To many of the participants, the differences between coaching and therapy are very unclear.
The primary distinction between coaching and therapy used to be this imaginary line on the horizon called functionality. Ten years ago, everything below the line (the land of disfunction) belonged in the realm of therapy and everything above the line (functionality) belonged to coaching. So, clearly, depression and any diagnosable therapeutic conditions require a therapist. Just as clearly, goal setting, visioning and self actualization was the work of a coach. Another clear distinction was that therapy dealt with the past to the present and coaching only concerned itself with the present to the future.
Here’s what’s happened though. Therapy has evolved into the realm of positive psychology and human development, which was previously exclusively the work of a coach. And coaching has evolved into the realm of feelings and overcoming fears which dangerously treads on the boundaries of therapy.
Additionally, while therapy is highly regulated, coaching is not. The International Coach Federation offers regulation, certifies coaches and accredits schools to train coaches in 11 Core Competencies with supervision. But there are many, many people calling themselves coaches that have no training outside of their life or their professional experience. So, now we have marketing coaches, business coaches, peak performance coaches, executive coaches, grief coaches, eating disorder coaches, and everything in between. The business coaches don’t cause as much trouble in this conversation as the life and lifestyle coaches. Most of the time business and executive coaches don’t offer coaching around feelings and personal issues that would overlap with therapy. But grief coaches and eating disorder coaches are definitely dancing a fine line between coaching and therapy. And most clients eventually ask their coach to work with them in some capacity in the realm of past hurts and unresolved issues that formed current belief systems.
An ironic distinction is that in order to identify a client with an eating disorder or depression or something like that, you actually need to be a therapist. Coaches are unqualified to diagnose or treat anything. Professional coaches have to be very clear about their boundaries and limitations and when to refer to a therapists. Likewise, it is unprofessional and unethical for therapists to call themselves coaches unless they have been trained in coaching tools.
The bottom line for clients:
- Work with the professional that you think you need
- Make sure that the professional you work with is certified or holds the proper credentials
The bottom line for coaches:
- Understand and know your professional boundaries. You can find ICF’s Ethical Guidelines here.
- If you aren’t already, get certified.
- Develop professional relationships with other coaches and therapists and continue this conversation.
- When in doubt, refer it out!