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Coaching, Mentoring or Therapy: Which is Right for Me?

Updated: May 16

In the vast landscape of personal development and support services, three pillars stand tall. Each has its own distinct purpose and methodology: coaching, mentoring, and therapy. While these terms are often used interchangeably, understanding the nuances between them can be the key to choosing the path that's right for you. Let's explore how each service contributes to personal growth and how to identify which one you need, and when.

Coaching: Guiding You to Success

When I say I'm a coach, occasionally, people often say "I need that! I have so much trauma to deal with and it's really getting in my way!" (or something along those lines). But that's not coaching...

Coaching is like having a skilled navigator by your side as you chart and sail a path from where you are and what you're doing now, to where you want to be and how you would like to be living your life. Unlike therapy, coaching is future-oriented, focusing on your goals and aspirations. A coach acts as a catalyst, helping you identify your strengths, challenge your perceptions, and develop stepping stones towards your ideal life.

Together, you and your coach create a roadmap, setting achievable milestones and working towards tangible results. The coaching relationship is built on collaboration, empowerment, and client accountability, making it an ideal choice for those seeking to enhance their performance and achieve specific objectives.

One of the main differences of coaching from mentoring and therapy is that a coach does not give advice. Coaching's principles hold that the client is best-placed to find the path forward, based on their own priorities and values, and they are much more likely to act if the solution is one they have come up with themselves. The coach facilitates this by opening up the client's mind and encouraging them to look past the first options and into the problem at a deeper level.

Compass to find your true path in life

Mentoring: Learning from Experience

Mentoring is a time-honoured tradition of passing down knowledge and wisdom from the expert to the novice. A mentor is typically someone with extensive experience in a particular field or subject. They serve as a guide and role model, sharing insights and lessons learned from personal experiences. The mentor-mentee relationship is often informal, allowing for a natural exchange of ideas, guidance and advice. If you're looking to gain industry-specific knowledge, navigate career transitions, or simply benefit from the wisdom of someone who has walked a similar path, mentoring could be for you.

Mentor to learn from

Therapy: Healing from Within

Therapy is the unpicking of the threads that weave the fabric of our minds and emotions, usually following some form of trauma, or run of negative experiences. Unlike coaching and mentoring, which are proactive and focused on future achievement, therapy is often centred around introspection and healing from the past. Therapists are trained professionals in psychology or counselling and provide a safe space for individuals to explore their thoughts, emotions, and past experiences.

Whether dealing with anxiety, depression, trauma, or other mental health concerns, therapy is a supportive process that promotes self-discovery, self-acceptance, and emotional well-being. It's about addressing the roots of problems and creating a foundation for lasting change.

Therapy to help you overcome past experiences

There are many similarities between coaching, mentoring, and therapy when you look from afar. However, knowing when to seek each service depends on your unique needs and goals.

Whether you're aiming to achieve success, seeking guidance from a seasoned expert, or embarking on a journey of self-discovery and healing, understanding the differences between coaching, mentoring and therapy can be the key to embarking on the required journey at that particular time.

When deciding if coaching is right for you, ask yourself the question: "Am I willing and ready for change and challenge?" If the answer is and almighty "YES!" then book in a starter session and lets take some action together.


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