Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Maybe I need a Life Coach

Yes, you heard me right. I think I need a life coach. Someone who will essentially be my friend, my mentor, my coach. Someone who will help and encourage me to reach my full potential. Someone that I will have to pay in order to talk with me.

Um, or maybe not...

I heard the term recently on the radio and was thinking to myself, what the heck is a life coach? It sounds like someone whose job it is to essentially be a parent to another who is unable to think, do and act for themselves. Or, put another way, the perfect combination of sycophant to pampered elites who are insecure about themselves and yes-man (or woman) whose job is to confirm that they are doing a good job while still occasionally gently scolding the "student/athlete/child" to remind them that they are not always right and will need the help of a life coach in order to have the fulfilling life they otherwise seem unable to obtain. I guess it is no surprise to find life coaches in places where there are lots of pampered elites like, say, Los Angeles (Hollywood, to be more specific) or New York.

Needless to say, I do not have a life coach. And maybe I should not be so denigrating to those obviously in need of one nor those who have made a career out of being one. But it is hard for a simple person like me to determine the necessity for something like this. It strikes me more as a con than as a legitimate activity, much like the personal fortune-tellers (I'm sure everyone remembers Nancy Reagan and I know there are others) of years past. However, people are in constant need of such reassurance and that is not a fault. But seriously, I thought that is what friends are for. And you don't have to pay your friends.


  1. Wow. Have you ever worked with a life coach? Sounds like you have many ideas about them but it is unclear if you have ever actually spoken with one. If you did perhaps you worked with the wrong one. Do you believe in mentors? If you don’t need a mentor then you should just become a life coach and help everyone else in the world that does.

    Full disclosure – My wife is a life coach. And I used to be like you and think I had all the answers. From experience it feels better to let go and realize you don’t. Then recognize that people are here to help each other grow. If your not friends with someone who is exceptional at helping you grow then why not pay someone for that service. Just a thought. Even if you do have that friend there is value in having an unbiased person guide you.

    By the way if you ever come around my wife won’t work with you. She only works with women:) So this is not a pitch for her. More of a pitch to you to be a little more open minded and Grow With It. Good luck to you.

  2. Thanks for your comments, Dave. I had actually never heard of a life coach until last week and found the concept to be, well, foolish and designed for the insecure. A quick review of a few sites of and about life coaches did not do anything to dissuade me from that opinion.

    If a life coach is a mentor, then that seems reasonable to me. But that does not seem to be how many of them operate. It just seems like a con game designed to prey on those who are insecure about themselves or their accomplishments.

    This does not mean that I believe I have all the answers nor that I do not have friends or others who serve as mentors (whether for personal or professional needs), merely that the idea of paying someone to counsel me seems to be nothing more than non-medically degreed person operating in the role of a paid friend/mentor. Obviously there is a need for such a service else such people would not exist. But in an era of touchy-feely, "how do I justify my existence" social mores, life-coaches seem to be nothing more than just the latest fad to satisfy the need.

    And I do not mean to denigrate those who legimitately provide a service that people desire. Just because I personally do not feel the need for such services does not mean that others may not need it (obviously). Indeed, it is worth stating that I am merely posing my own personal opinion on a subject that I recently discovered existed. And you know what they say about opinions...