My friend and Potential's regular contributor, Monika, just began offering life coaching services. Occupational therapy definitely has some elements of "life coaching" in it, but true life coaching seems like a great pursuit if you can't shake the desire to go deeper with our clients. Check out Monika's insights on the interplay between life coaching and OT below!
Did your occupational therapy career somehow lead you into life coaching?
Perhaps in part, but not completely. My name actually means "counselor" so perhaps ironically I have always loved the dynamic of communicating with people about the "deeper" issues of their lives, really listening, and then continuing a dialogue until a true sense of relief is felt. Doing occupational therapy helped me affirm my interest in coaching, helped me gain even more confidence in my interactions with others, and inspired me to live my own life to the fullest by living out my own dreams, too.
How does your work as an occupational therapist inform your work as a life coach?
Working as an occupational therapist reminds me to put the client first and explore the client's world as an individual, but focuses mostly on actions DURING our interaction. It reminds me that as a life coach I have a bit more freedom to help people process through their desires, barriers and strategies with a basis in communication and on a more holistic level than I do for my average OT patient. The average OT patient for me is paying for OT through Medicare and is therefore under specific guidelines for what is billable through occupational therapy services.
How does your work as life coach inform your work as an OT?
Working as a life coach reminds me to think outside the box more with my patients in the health care setting. Often health care can be a sterile field so the intense creativity of life coaching has recently inspired me to bring the same creativity to my occupational therapy practice. As a result, I have started creating occupation based kits for our rehab department and view myself as a daily life coach when I am in the health care setting. Re-phrasing my position as an "occupational therapist" allows me to re-frame my approach and come forth with a more renewed, open, and creative mindset... and from there ANYTHING is possible;) More than anything, being a coach has inspired me to keep living the life of my dreams (aka to walk my talk).
What can an average rehab therapist gain from life coaching?
Oh my goodness!!! So much! I think the average rehab therapist could gain the following outcomes through working with a life coach:
- work life balance that actually works
- overcome barriers to stress or blocks preventing true and passionate career advancement
- increased meaning and intimacy in relationships
- increased income
- clarity of personal and profession goals and simple steps to align with them
- increase meaning in life
- improved overall health and well being
Any other thoughts?
I coach because I love it and firmly believe in it. I believe in helping people through supporting their awareness, supporting them with and to acceptance, and clarifying and strategizing aligned action. If you are interested, try a 30 min free consult. Visit polishyourlight.com for more details.