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What is Coaching?

Get the most out of your Life Coaching, Executive Coaching, or Business Coaching session by learning more about what these services can do for you. In this post, you will learn about:

The difference between Coaching and Counseling

Life Coaching and Executive Coaching share some key similarities with Counseling, but differ based on the client’s needs and goals.

Like coaching, Counseling is a collaboration between the counselor and the client. The counselor guides the client to help them set and reach healthy, realistic goals. If a coaching client has significant issues to resolve, they may need counseling as well. This can help a client resolve issues from the past that get in the way of reaching goals.

For more about Counseling, see our post: “What is Counseling?”

In coaching, there is some overlap because self-improvement and reaching one’s “personal best” are the basis of a client’s goals. Coaching is a better match if you:

  • are ready to work on strengths rather than healing a dysfunction
  • have resolved past issues and are ready to move forward with future goals
  • are ready to take a greater level of responsibility
  • and are ready to maximize their potential.

The goals of Coaching

Goals can be anything you want to achieve in your personal or professional life.

The main goal of coaching is to help you discover what is blocking you from achieving a goal, understand why it is blocking you, and to overcome the issue. To achieve goals, a client often needs to develop confidence, get out of a rut, or get help with setting/managing milestones for a difficult challenge.

CrossRoads’ director is a certified member of iPEC, the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching. Most of the coaching terms and concepts used here are from iPEC.


Hindrances that block you from achieving your goals are often referred to as “blocks”.

In iPEC Coaching, there are four main types of “blocks” and are often referred to as blocking your energy, rather than blocking your path. This is because most of a client’s blocks are limits a client has imposed on themselves. These are the main types of blocks as defined by iPEC:

  • Limiting belief: A belief that a goal cannot be achieved. If you believe you cannot achieve your goal, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
  • Interpretation: You can choose to interpret a situation in a positive or negative way. An unnecessarily negative view can harm relationships.
  • Assumption: Assuming a negative outcome that happened in the past will happen again. This can cause you to miss opportunities.
  • Gremlin: Your “inner critic”. It is powered by fears and tells you that you’re not worthy, not smart enough, too ugly, etc.

Life Coaching

More than guidance, coaching keeps clients accountable. This helps clients become self-sufficient. A coach is also objective and can help clients see their issues and progress from a new perspective. Some of the most common goals for life coaching:

  • Emotional Intelligence: (EI) When you can recognize your emotions and the emotions of others, it helps you communicate more effectively and manage your own emotions.
  • Potential: Getting rid of your “blocks” can help you discover and maximize your potential. A coach can help you objectively assess skills and traits you might be taking for granted. 
  • Realistic goals: Setting realistic goals is the basis of achievement. If your goals are not realistic, it can lead to additional problems.
  • Confidence: A lack of confidence is the basis of most “blocks”. Guidance for building confidence is the most commonly requested service in life coaching. 
  • Assertiveness: Even if you are confident, being assertive might not be your “default setting”. Being more assertive can help in personal and professional situations. (Being assertive is not the same thing as being aggressive.)
  • Procrastination: Putting things off until the last minute can keep you from getting the best results. Part of setting goals includes breaking down a goal or project into doable tasks.
  • Self-Discipline: If you need help with starting or stopping a behavior, it might be out of your comfort zone. The accountability of coaching can help you with any necessary life change that is out of your comfort zone.
  • Communication: Learn to convey thoughts and ideas more effectively. Coaching can help you gain objectivity, a new perspective, and mindfulness.
  • Organization: Do you feel like you’re “losing your marbles?” Are you wasting time or productivity tracking down files or things? The objective perspective of a coach can help you find ways to become more organized.
  • Take risks: Is playing it safe getting in the way of reaching your goals? A coach can help you take reasonable risks and expand your comfort zone.

Executive Coaching

Personal blocks can get in the way of your profitability, professional reputation, and long-term career prospects. Get all the benefits of life coaching plus:

  • Management: Don’t let a lack of assertiveness get in the way of managing a team. Your coach can help you improve leadership skills. Worrying about being liked is a common concern. This can keep you from giving the feedback your team needs to hear. Increased confidence and Emotional Intelligence from coaching can give you the boost you need to take action.
  • Objectivity: Your coach is objective and can teach you greater objectivity. Just like in counseling, a coach is a neutral party to your growth and can help you gain a more objective perspective.
  • Listening: Do you hate getting feedback? We all have to deal with painful news from time to time. Your coach can help you handle what’s blocking you from this important part of communication. (Whether it’s constructive criticism or just plain rude, there’s a way to learn from mistakes.)
  • Delegating: Let go and trust your team! This can open you up to new ideas and increased productivity. Don’t forget, those team members were hired for a reason! If you trust and empower your team, you can increase employee engagement and reduce turnover.

Business Coaching

The main difference is that Executive Coaching is one-on-one coaching. For Business Coaching, the coach meets with team members or any employee involved in conflict. This can range from working with a small group all the way up to a larger workshop.

  • Anger Management: Anger and hurt feelings can divide (or splinter) a team. Coaching can help to diffuse tension and get back on track. Team members can be coached to accept differences and communicate again.
  • Communication: Even if anger isn’t the culprit, your coach can get to the root of the problem and open a line of dialog.
  • Group Conflict: Restoring a group’s productivity is far easier and cheaper than replacing them! Not only can this help you avoid the process of firing and hiring, it can increase loyalty.
  • Understanding Temperament: A person’s temperament (or, “default setting”), is how they prefer to function. Team members can also learn to appreciate one another for their differences. This can also help to prevent future problems.

No two people or teams are exactly alike! Services can be customized for your team’s specific needs. 

This is a list of our most often requested services. Contact CrossRoads today for more information about how we can help you reach your goals. We offer experienced and certified coaching services. Contact CrossRoads at 317-842-8881.