Center for Coaching Certification

More on Wellness Coaching

What, specifically, is wellness coaching?  Wellness coaches partner with clients for positive and lasting change in terms of well-being. What, specifically, is well-being?  Well-being includes a positive emotional and mental state, a balance that works for the individual in terms of work, personal care, spirituality, relationships, lifestyle, and the optimal physical health for that person.

Wellness coaches work with individuals to explore the desired state of well-being, identify challenges, consider strategies, design actions, and create an accountability for moving forward and achieving the outcome. 

How can I become a Wellness Coach?  Starting with the basics: the gold standard for being a coach is membership in the International Coach Federation (ICF).   The ICF requires 60 hours of training to become a member.  In addition to membership, the ICF offers credentialing – think about it this way: becoming a member of the ICF is much like getting a degree, and then earning a credential is much like getting a masters or doctorate level degree.

At the Center for Coaching Certification, this means first the Certified Professional Coach and then the Certified Wellness Coach Specialist programs:

  • The ICF-approved Certified Professional Coach program is 30-hours and serves to initiate people into the coaching competencies and develop coaching skills, plus provide a process.
  • The ICF-approved Certified Wellness Coach Specialist program is 35-hours and completes the 60 hours required for membership in the ICF, and the hours required for the first level of credentialing, the ACC.  The Certified Wellness Coach Specialist program provides the training focused specifically on Wellness Coaching.

These programs are amongst the most affordable ICF (International Coach Federation) approved programs.  The classes are packed with information, stimulating, and fun.  Additional benefits of the Center for Coaching Certification include:

  • The Center for Coaching Certification is the only ICF-approved program that is also accredited by IACET to offer CEUs (Continuing Education Units).
  • A robust suite of coaching tools and resources, available to graduates on the Coach Login page.
  • A personal dashboard to give multiple assessments including the DiSC, EIQ, 360, and more along with extensive resources including facilitation and debriefing guides.

What can I do as a wellness coach?

  • Empower individuals to identify what they truly desire in their life and partner with them to get there in your own business.
  • Work inside one of many large corporations as a wellness coach for employees to enhance their personal life and aid in that proverbial work/life balance.
  • Work with a health care provider or system as a wellness coach for their clients.

As a wellness coach, you will feel good yourself knowing that your skills greatly enhance the lives of others.

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Competencies, Models, and Processes

The coaching competencies plus various models and processes are easily and naturally intertwined during coaching relationships.  The scenarios in the previous blogs give you a sense that while there are many different processes and models, when blended with the competencies all serve to move the coachee forward.

Coaching Compared to Other Models

Professional accountants, financial planners, attorneys, doctors, dentists, psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, therapists, and social workers are hired because of their licensing and subject matter expertise. Professionals in human resources, talent development, training, organizational development, and consulting are employed because of their education and expertise in their field.

Coaches are hired for their process expertise. Coaching differs from other professional roles in that a coach serves primarily as a process expert while the coachee is the primary subject matter expert.  Ultimately the coachee knows their own circumstances, relationships, considerations, and dreams better than anyone else.  That the coach puts the coachee in charge of being their own best expert results in the coachee thinking deeply and making their own choices. This means they own it and follow through. 

What a Coachee Gains from Coaching

Research shows quantitative and qualitative benefits to coaching.  The challenge is explaining to one individual what they will gain.

Reflect on the experience of coaching from the coachee’s perspective.  The coachee talks about who they are and what they want.  The coachee thinks and describes what they want in all areas of their life.  The coachee is focused on their own big picture so their priorities and considerations become clear.  Chances are this is the first time the coachee has invested this much time into their own dreams.

During the coaching, the coachee explores possibilities, strategies, and plans their actions.  The focus is on the coachee’s goals and planning.  The coach is an accountability partner and maintains a positive, proactive approach.

The coachee feels supported.  By experiencing the positive and proactive approach, the coachee adopts this for themselves.  The coachee’s confidence increases, their thinking becomes clearer, and their decision making is more effective.

In addition to the impact of coaching, the coaching model and process empowers being effective, clear-thinking, and happy.

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Wellness Coaching

Here is an example of a wellness coaching engagement using models, processes, and the coaching competencies.

Visualize being hired for a wellness coaching relationship.  The coachee is dealing with high blood pressure and wants to wear a size 14.  In an introductory session, you learn about the coachee’s situation.  Based on the coachee’s desire to immediately work on exercise and diet plans, you discuss using the STAR model: Situation, Task (or Thoughts), Action, Results.

After signing the agreement with the coachee, you move right into clarifying the situation and defining the coachee’s tasks. From there the conversation flows into the coachee listing specific action steps.  In the next coaching session, you check in with the coachee and find that they are stuck in the same place.  As the coach, you discuss different approaches with the coachee including a holistic approach.  The coachee is feeling more comfortable with you as their coach and chooses to move to the holistic approach. Switching to the CPC process, you schedule a session for exploring the coachee’s big picture.

During the coaching session, the coachee becomes aware of influencing factors and competing priorities.  You ask the coachee what they want their results to be and what might get in the way.  The coachee shares that it is challenging for them to believe they can do it and to stay focused.  In the next session, you provide the coachee with a summary of their goals, a tool they can use consistently to build confidence and as a reminder.

As you continue coaching with questions and rephrasing, you work with the coachee to build their confidence. When the coachee is ready, they start again with their diet and exercise planning. When you ask how they want to manage accountability, they list things they will do and say they want you checking in too.  In the following session, the coachee is excited to report they are making progress and you take time to acknowledge their success.

Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • What is happening for you now?
  • What is your understanding of your circumstances?
  • What do you want your diet to be?
  • What is your current exercise routine?
  • What do you want your exercise routine to be?
  • What could challenge your following through?
  • How will you move past the challenges?
  • What is working well?
  • What is holding you back?
  • What is your understanding of a task focus versus a holistic approach in coaching?
  • How will you measure your progress?
  • What are your priorities?
  • What influences you?
  • What success have you experienced?
  • What success do you want to create?
  • How will you create your new successes?
  • How will you move past challenges?
  • How will you stay on track?
  • How do you want to manage accountability?
  • How do you want to stay motivated?
  • How do you want to acknowledge progress?
  • How do you want to celebrate success?
  • When do you want to be celebrating your success?
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Life Coaching

Here is an example of a life coaching engagement using models, processes, and the coaching competencies.

A colleague in your network refers a coachee who is retiring and transitioning to a new lifestyle and home in a retirement community.  Because you want the coachee to be comfortable with coaching and with you as coach, you offer a free introductory session.  Based on the connection and coachee’s objectives, you move forward to establishing the coaching agreement and providing your Code of Ethics.  The process you are using works well with the Co-Initiation, Co-Sensing, Presencing, Co-Creating, Co-Evolving model.  Continuing with your co-initiation and moving into co-sensing by developing the trust and intimacy plus being present to the coachee, you have an opening session with a big-picture exploration of what your coachee wants in all different areas of their life.  Next you blend the coachee’s goals into a story using their language for presencing the coachee to what they want their life.  From there, you co-create how they want to communicate, strategize, plan, and be held accountable.  As the coachee considers the meaning of different options, reflects on how they are applying life lessons, and chooses what they want to be involved with, you co-evolve.  

Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • What do you want? What else?
  • What does achieving what you want mean to you?
  • Describe your life after achieving what you want.
  • What will you see?
  • What will you feel?
  • What will you hear?
  • How do you want to move toward what you want?
  • How do you want the coaching sessions to support you?
  • How do you want to be held accountable?
  • How do you want to acknowledge your progress?
  • How do you want to celebrate your successes?
  • What might challenge you?
  • How will you move past the challenges?
  • What are your resources?
  • How will you maximize your resources?
  • What are your strategies for making change?
  • What are your thoughts on what you are learning?
  • What do you want to be aware of in your daily life?
  • How will you apply what you are learning?
  • How are you benefitting from your reflections?
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Executive Coaching

Here is an example of an executive coaching engagement using models, processes, and the coaching competencies.

For an executive coaching engagement, you start with an introductory session to ensure you are a good match.  Once you determine the fit, you sign an agreement that includes a link to the Code of Ethics.  The model you start with for this coaching relationship is: Vision, Strategy, Outcomes, Learning.executive coaching

In the first coaching session, you explore the big picture vision the coachee has for what they want in all areas.  In your second session, you implement a strategy for the coachee to maintain their focus and motivation.  By the third session you are asking the coachee to prioritize what they want to work on first.  Together you explore the circumstances and opportunities.  You invite the coachee to brainstorm strategies for how they want to implement changes.  The coachee decides on their action steps.  As the coach, you are their accountability partner, so you ask about their outcomes and how they will continue moving forward.  You also ask them to reflect and share what they are learning in the process.

Examples of Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • Describe the status quo.
  • What do you want at home?
  • What are your goals for your health?
  • What are your plans for your free time?
  • What is your balance of work, home, and personal time?
  • What is your vision for the organization?
  • What is your ideal outcome?
  • What are the opportunities?
  • What are the current strategies?
  • What is changing?
  • What are different possibilities?
  • What are influencing factors?
  • What is your best possible outcome?
  • What is your worst possible outcome?
  • What will happen if you continue as you are now?
  • What do you want to have happen?
  • What will it take to make that happen?
  • What might get in the way?
  • What are your resources?
  • What are your ideas for different approaches?
  • What else?
  • What is your strategy?
  • What is your back-up approach?
  • What is your action plan?
  • What is your plan B?
  • How is your plan working?
  • What is working well?
  • What do you want to change?
  • What are you learning?
  • What tips do you have for yourself now?
  • How do you want to continue learning?
  • How will you continue moving forward?

 

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Career Coaching

Here is an example of a career coaching engagement using models, processes, and the coaching competencies.

Envision a career coaching opportunity.  Sometimes the challenge is recognizing which role will best serve the coachee – trainer, consultant, or coach.  Often the answer is all three roles.  Based on an introductory conversation, you offer a combination of services to the coachee.  With this approach, you decide to use the MEDICS model: Motivation, Explanation, Demonstration, Imitation, Consolidation, Support.  

Prior to starting the engagement, you provide the coachee with an agreement and a copy of the Code of Ethics.  The coachee is invited to ask questions and you review key points in both documents.  Next you co-create your engagement by discussing which type of service you are scheduling and when.  During all service roles you utilize your coaching communication competencies.  The training, consulting, and coaching all serve to facilitate learning and results.

The relationship starts with a coaching session focused on exploring the coachee’s motivation and having them explain their experience and options.  Next you have a training session to demonstrate resume writing.  From there, you consult with the coachee as they update their resume imitating what they learned.  Next you have another coaching session for the coachee to consolidate their resources and create their job search strategy.  The coaching continues to support the coachee with brainstorming, role playing interviews, accountability, and ongoing strategizing and motivation.

Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • What motivates you to engage in the job search process?
  • What is your ideal position?
  • Describe your ideal work day.
  • What is your career experience?
  • What is your educational background?
  • What are your career successes?
  • Who is in your professional network?
  • What are your thoughts on different styles of resumes?
  • What are you seeing in resumes that you like?
  • What do you want to incorporate in your resume?
  • What are your thoughts on interviewing?
  • What questions do you anticipate?
  • How will you dress?
  • What else do you want to prepare?
  • What is your follow-up to interviews?
  • What are your considerations for negotiating a position?
  • What are your resources for finding possible positions?
  • How will you prioritize possibilities?
  • How will you organize your search?
  • How will you track applications?
  • What is your support system?
  • How do you want me to support you?
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Business Coaching

Here is an example of a business coaching engagement using models, processes, and the coaching competencies.

Imagine you are starting a coaching engagement with a business coachee.  First you prepare by completing your training and setup.  To co-create the coaching relationship, start with in an introductory session.  Ask the coachee about themselves and their interests and objectives.  Discuss different approaches including whether the coachee wants to talk only about the business or take a more holistic approach.  Based on this conversation you decide to start with the process for CPC and the GROW model: Goal, Current Reality, Options, Will or Way Forward. 

Using your process, in an opening session you ask the coachee about what they want in all areas of their life.  It helps them gain clarity about their big picture, competing priorities, and influencing factors.  Then, in the second session, you provide the coachee with the information they gave in the first session formatted as their story and a tool for staying engaged.  By the third session, you collaborate to co-create the coaching process.  Prior to the session, you send a form with questions about the status of their business to define their reality, their thoughts, and their objectives, moving toward their goals.

Following the GROW model, you ask the coachee about their status quo and their goals in terms of business growth, management, sustainability, scale-ability, and sale-ability.  With the goals and reality defined, the coachee is ready to explore their options and opportunities.  Next you ask the coachee how they will move forward.  Specific action steps are scheduled.  In the following coaching session, you ask how they are doing.  You challenge them on incomplete tasks and celebrate their progress and success.

Sometimes you are working on tasks during the coaching session.  Other times you role play challenging conversations.  When the coachee reaches a point where they have accomplished what they wanted from the coaching, you plan a session to strategize how they will maintain their progress and continue creating successes.  In a closing session, you review what the coachee accomplished through coaching and their resources moving forward.

Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • What are your objectives for a coaching relationship?
  • What will be helpful to discuss?
  • What is your understanding of the difference between focusing on the business versus a holistic approach?
  • How will you measure the value of coaching?
  • What is your vision for your business?
  • What do you want?
  • What influences your choices?
  • What influences your decisions?
  • What priorities compete for your attention?
  • What is the status of your business?
  • What is the status of your business plan?
  • What is the status of your marketing plan?
  • What financial statements can we review?
  • What does your organizational chart look like?
  • Describe your management style.
  • Describe your business culture.
  • What is your customer base?
  • How do your customers perceive you?
  • What do you do best?
  • What do you want to improve?
  • What are your sales goals?
  • What is your customer satisfaction goal?
  • How sustainable is your business?
  • What are your considerations for sustainability?
  • What is scale-able in your business?
  • What are your thoughts about future sale-ability?
  • What is your succession plan?
  • What do you want to work on first?
  • What are the influencing factors?
  • What might get in the way?
  • What are your resources?
  • What strategies do you want to consider?
  • How do you want to move forward?
  • What are your action steps?
  • How do you feel about your plan?
  • What is working well?
  • What do you want to improve?
  • What is your next priority?
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Application of Models and Processes

At the Center for Coaching Certification, students are exposed to coaching agreements during their training. The following blogs are examples of coaching engagements using different models, processes, and the competencies.  Each description is followed by possible questions. 

Academic Coaching

Imagine a school district brings you in to coach teachers on how to be more effective in the classroom.  They are familiar with and request use of the FUEL model – Frame the Conversation, Understand the Current State, Explore the Desired State, Layout a Success Plan.

Applying your coaching competencies, first you ensure everyone understands the role of sponsor, coach, and coachee.  You ensure there is a clear agreement on what information will be exchanged and how it will be provided.  You sign a service agreement with the school district as sponsor, and sign individual coaching agreements with the teachers who will be your coachees.  Both agreements include your Code of Ethics.

To frame the conversation, in your first coaching session you ask the coachee to share their approach to planning lessons and teaching.  You ask them their thoughts on how they interact with the students.  To help understand the current state, you observe the coachee when they are teaching and ask follow-up questions about your observations.  As the coach, you establish trust by demonstrating your trust in their abilities and being present to how they want to think and process.  The communication is clear and direct with powerful questions followed by active listening.  The questions explore the desired state by inviting the coachee to explore what they want it to be and then you follow-up by asking them to layout their plan for success by defining their action steps.  As the coach, you serve as their accountability partner by asking about their progress and acknowledging their successes.

Questions for this Coaching Scenario:

  • What is your understanding of our coaching relationship?
  • How do you feel about the confidentiality arrangements?
  • What is your approach to lesson planning?
  • What are your thoughts on how to interact with students?
  • When this situation occurred, what options did you consider?
  • How do you decide which approach to take?
  • What is your evaluation of your teaching?
  • What do you want to change?
  • What do you want to continue doing?
  • What is your ideal classroom environment?
  • What skills do you want to further develop?
  • What might prevent you from creating your ideal?
  • What resources do you have?
  • What strategies will you implement?
  • What are your specific action steps?
  • When will you do each?
  • How do you want to manage accountability?
  • How will you measure progress and success?
  • How do you want to recognize your progress and successes?
  • What are you learning from the coaching?
  • What are you learning from your actions?
  • How do you want to adjust moving forward?
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Facilitating Learning and Results

Creating Awareness, Designing Actions, Planning and Goal Setting, plus Managing Progress and Accountability are competencies where the coachee is exploring, strategizing, designing action steps, and planning how they will stay on track.  On a fun note, accountability also means celebrating progress and success along the way.

Because coaching is for creating meaningful change, coaching certification is a must to gain insight and techniques to support the application of these coaching competencies.

A few tips for when you are coaching to ensure you are applying these competencies:

  • Explore and then explore more.
  • Brainstorm ideas – include the crazy, mediocre, and good thoughts before the coachee chooses.
  • Role play to practice coachee interactions.
  • Ask for specific actions and a timeline.
  • Complete tasks during the session including creating documents, writing, researching, organizing, etc.
  • Ask the coachee what they want support for doing.
  • Get specific on how to manage accountability.
  • Take time to celebrate successes.

At the Center for Coaching Certification, during coach training there are many opportunities to practice these competencies and the impact is amazing.  Consider for yourself how having techniques for creating awareness in yourself and others opens possibilities.  Imagine the difference when you apply specific techniques that support effective goal setting plus enhance the follow-through on action plans.  Consider how effectively partnering with others for accountability supports success.  In addition to the power of these competencies in coaching relationships, these skills serve trained coaches in all of their relationships.

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Communication

Active Listening, Powerful Questioning, and Direct Communication are skills many have studied and at the same time, in coaching, the application is different.  The irony is that many of us believe we are pretty good communicators and it is true that many come to coach training with a high level of skill.  At the same time, communication in coaching is completely different – we often joke that learning coaching is like learning a different language.  During coaching certification, specific techniques are taught for applying these competencies as a professional coach.

Because the application of these competencies is very different in coaching compared to other service professions, this list serves as a good reminder of what to do when coaching:

  • Apply listening techniques when coaching.
    • Listen with intention and all your senses.
    • Rephrase what they say with their key words.
  • Ask coaching questions:
    • Open-ended.
    • Short and simple.
    • Future-focused.
    • For the benefit of the coachee.
    • With awareness that the coachee knows their answer.
  • Be clear:
    • Use positive, proactive language.
    • Be respectful, supportive, and give them ownership.
    • Be succinct. 

Successfully developing these competencies for coaching takes time and practice.  Coach training is the first opportunity for being aware and intentional with these skills and the coaching practicum helps prepare you for building on your learning as a coach.

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