Life Coaching: Goal Digging & Guiding by Liz Morrisey

Life Coaching: Goal Digging & Guiding by Liz Morrisey

By Liz Morrisey

Life Coaches break big goals into bite-size, doable chunks, and then hold their clients accountable, hopefully to achievement.

We all have times when we feel a bit lost and question our lives and where we are going. Do I go for that promotion at work? Why can’t I lose that 10 pounds? How do I reconnect with what’s most important in my life?

Life coaches can help one evaluate their life and answer these types of questions – from a personal standpoint or from a business perspective. Emily Rogers personally benefited from having a life coach so she decided to become one. Rogers, who lives in Lakeland, started her own company in 2013 and offers executive, life, career and business coaching.

“It’s all about unlocking your personal and professional potential,” she explains. “We are helping people thrive. They become not only better leaders but better people too.”

First, it is important for the client to really look at what they want to accomplish, Rogers says. After an initial questionnaire, she encourages them to meet with her every other week for one hour the first few months. “The sessions are collaborative and intuitive. The coach and client are actively engaged. We discuss new approaches and so much of the work and benefit happens in between sessions,” she says.

According to the International Coach Federation, 80 percent of people working with a life coach said their self confidence increased and more than 70 percent reported improved work performance, relationships and better communication skills. Diana Smith has been a client of Rogers for three years and feels life coaching helped her personally and professionally.

“I knew I had all these characteristics but I didn’t know how to cultivate them properly,” she says. “It’s all about your entire life. She taught me different strategies. I’ve seen so much growth in working with her. It helped me to work with different personalities and relationships at work and it can help with (how you interact) your husband and children too.”

Smith, director of development for Explorations V Children’s Museum, says through the sessions she saw how she can change the way she was interacting with others. Does Smith recommend life coaching to others? Absolutely, just be sure to be accepting and open to advice and feedback. “It will turn a mirror around on yourself,” Smith says.

Breaking bad habits and holding yourself accountable is the key to life coaching being successful, says Daniela Zoppe, who took the two-year life coaching course and continues to help friends and family. “I stopped doing it for payment and now just do it organically to help others,” she explains. “I just enjoy helping someone who has struggled with things for so long. I give them tools to work it out on their own.”

Finding the right coach is key and don’t expect it to be a quick fix, she says. Zoppe, who lives in Polk County, especially enjoys working with women and helping them through transitional periods in their lives. “I see how capable so many women are and they are everything to everyone. It’s about bringing clarification to women and (having them focus on themselves).”

Phyllis Ferguson, a life coach for 12 years, has also found a niche and likes helping young to middle-aged women. She says most of her clients are dealing with life changes and just need some guidance. They may be struggling with weight loss, budgeting their finances, or even marital issues. “My job isn’t to tell them what to do. They have all the answers themselves. I just help them set goals and coach them on how to get there.”

Ferguson started out as a massage therapist and while they were on the table, they were sharing all kinds of personal information. “I thought to myself, I wish I knew what to say and help,” she says. So she enrolled in the Coaches Training Institute in Atlanta. “Now I have the tools to help people wherever they are and where they want to be.”

In the world of technology there are many ways coaches can communicate with clients, but Zoppe still prefers the old-fashioned way—face-to-face. However, sessions can also be done through Skype or the phone.

Life coaching can range widely and be pricey, as high as $300 or more. Ferguson charges $60 for a 45-minute meeting, while Rogers charges in the higher range. There are many factors to consider with a coach’s fee, says Rogers. “Business and executive coaches typically charge more based on their years of experience, specialized training, industry experience and the title of the person being coached.”

For these coaches, however, it’s not about the money. They just enjoy helping others and seeing lives improve.

To contact Emily Rogers: To contact Daniela Zoppe: 407-808-7350. To contact Phyllis Ferguson: 863-324-4815.