How does coaching work?

Mostly, coaching occurs on the telephone.

Usually, there’s a free session to establish comfort and fit. After that, at the appointed time, the coach and the client meet on the phone to discuss goals they've agreed upon – and the best way to get there. It usually lasts at least a half-hour, 45 minutes is “standard”, and some sessions go 60 minutes or even longer.

How much does it cost?

The cost varies according to the experience and intensity of the coaching. It can be as little as $200 a month and as much as $800 a month, or even more if we get into Executive Coaching.

What’s the commitment?

Generally, we ask for three months “commitment” as a reasonable time frame for progress to be gauged by both parties. The great thing about coaching is that all parties are usually “satisfied” – or else the coaching stops. I happily refund any unused portions of prepaid fees, but it usually doesn’t happen because people are free and capable of making decisions on their own behalf.

What’s the difference between coaching and therapy?

The primary difference is that therapy presumes a mental “illness” for which therapy is the treatment. It’s a disease model. Coaching generates positive change by effectively interacting with clients in ways that stimulate thoughts and feelings, yes, but the end product is almost always action. I have an article which I include in my Welcome Packet that nicely summarizes and encapsulates the differences between coaching and psychotherapy.

How long does it take?

Some people get what they need in a very short time. After a few weeks, they’re in gear, moving the way they want to move. We usually ask for three months to give it a fair shot, but sometimes we mutually agree that we’re already where we said we want to go – so we cut it short.

Obviously, some people need more time to achieve complex goals with longer timelines. Often, after a stretch of intense weekly sessions, it’s helpful to back off to bi-weekly or monthly sessions as part of an ongoing real time evaluation of where we are, and what’s truly needed.

It’s one of the great benefits of coaching that I have clients who have worked with me effectively for stretches, then back down, and ultimately coach with me on an “as needed” basis about particular challenges they’re heading into.

How does payment work? Do you take Visa? How about PayPal?

The client pays in advance, usually monthly. Yes, I take Visa and PayPal.

Can I get reimbursed through insurance?

Highly doubtful. Coaching is not a “medical” service covered by health insurance the way psychotherapy is.

How do I know it’s working?

You should generally feel good about what’s occurring, and feel good about getting there. Again, unlike therapy, there’s no need to pass through mental anguish to get where you need to go. The process should be as transparent and above-board as is humanly possible. You should generally look forward to your coaching call!

What if I really need therapy instead of coaching?

I’ll tell you the truth, if that’s what I think – and I’ll help you find a therapist. I’ve had many years of experience providing assessments, and referring people to counselors and psychotherapists.

And by the way, if you feel right now that you need therapy instead of coaching, you may well be right.

Are there problems doing coaching over the phone, as opposed to in person?

I was concerned about that myself, frankly, but once I began doing it I realized that a whole world of opportunity is opened up by doing things this way, and that, once you make the adaptation, it more than compensates for the absence of visual cues.

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