Frequently Asked Questions

What is personal coaching?

A personal coach assists clients with setting and achieving personal goals. It is a process that enables learning and development to occur. It is proactive and preventative mental health care.

What is the difference between coaching and counseling?

Coaching and counseling are significantly different from each other. Counseling is focused on a diagnosis and treatment, whereas coaching is rooted in preventative and maintenance mental health. 

Some examples of a counseling role:


  • Treatment of a mental health diagnosis

  • Crisis intervention

  • Addiction treatment

  • Treatment of trauma

  • Reflection and processing of past experiences

Some examples of a coaching role:


  • Support through life transitions

  • Encouragement of self-discovery

  • Teaching of function based skills/tools

  • Future focused goal setting

  • Discovery and clarity focused interviewing

  • Accountability

When is coaching appropriate?

Coaching is a great fit for anyone looking for new movement in their life. Often, we go through periods of confusion or feeling "stuck" and this is when a coach can be a great benefit. Sometimes, goals that once seemed easy can cause years of misery, while trying to achieve them, and painful feelings of failure and hopelessness follow. We all tend to get lost on rabbit trails or bogged down in dark valleys, along the way. When we reach our limits and face our crossroads, our choices become critical and literally life changing. We can become stuck – or we can choose to make difficult changes.


Coaching is not appropriate for someone looking to resolve past trauma, addiction, or mental illness. Coaching is not treatment for an ailment, rather, it is preventative care for those that hope to avoid future disappointment and aimlessness. Personal coaching is fabulous for someone who feels their life is stable, but knows they simply are not meeting their potential. Anyone who is looking for new ideas, insight, and a vision, is a great candidate for coaching. 

Additional Questions

If you have additional questions about coaching, The Idaho Life Coach Association is a great public resource. You can find their Q&A page HERE. 

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