I am finally ready to admit it: for most of my life, I have been a "self-help junkie."
I've read dozens of self-help books and browsed many of the rest. I've read Ann Landers and Dear Amy, watched Oprah and Dr. Phil, listened to audiotapes and mp3 recordings, watched videos and DVDs, and attended seminars. I've subscribed to Self, Real Simple, Working Mother, Money, and a host of other magazines.
And I have, indeed, learned a lot. I am a veritable fountain of wisdom regarding "how to succeed at life." I can quote authors, theories, practices, catch-phrases and exercises that would improve most any situation. But I have not always been so good at applying those things in my own life. Knowing and doing are two different things. And the premise of virtually all self-help books and articles is that "you are broken, and I can tell you how to fix it so that you can be beautiful and sexy, have a perfect home, wow your friends, get a promotion at work, and be the perfect wife and mother - all at the same time, and all by my definition of what those things look like." Yikes!
When I got involved with coaching, I saw that coaching starts with the premise that "you are unique, you are competent, and you are the expert of your own life." Coaching focuses on building and leveraging your strengths rather than "fixing" some perceived weakness. The value of a coach or coaching group is in helping you to access your own solutions, solutions that will work for you in your life, and in supporting you to make the changes you need to make to implement those solutions.
Equally important, a coach will ask you to check in on whether you are asking the right questions. A coach can help you clarify what it is you really, really, really want and then give you the support and tools you need to do what you want to do, and equally important, to be who you want to be while you are doing what you are doing. A coach will hold your vision even when you lose sight of it. If you get discouraged or stuck, a coach will keep you moving toward your goals, without expecting either instant change or immediate results. A coach will support you when you are down, prod you when you need it, help you move past any obstacles, and celebrate your success. Who couldn't use a coach?
When you read a book, you glean one or two things and think "I should do that." But do you actually DO them? When you work with a coach, you will find yourself saying: "I really want to do that" and "I really will do that" and "I can't believe I actually did that!"
Are you content to keep reading? Or are you ready to live a Winged Life?
What is the Winged Life? Click to find out. Or visit our Resources Page for a free worksheet to help you clarify what a Winged Life means to YOU.