Some people ask about the difference between coaching and counselling.
I'm not sure I could describe in a list what one does that the other does not. But I did have the opportunity of being in a school counsellor's room and coaching one of his students.
The story below comes from "The Coach in the Classroom", by Martin Richards..
When the boy came into the counsellor, Jason's room, Riccardo immediately saw he was an ordinary boy, except for the fact that his eyes darted everywhere. He moved his head much like a bird, and seemed to be looking for something, or looking out for something, Riccardo wasn’t sure which.
The boy radiated a lot of energy and it seemed as though the room became both brighter and hotter as he walked in. The boy looked Riccardo up and down, querying why he was there, but not actually asking the question.
Jason introduced them and portrayed Riccardo as a coach, a life coach. With this opening, Riccardo aimed to connect with the boy.
Riccardo faced the boy and said, "I work with people who are in the process of making a decision, who want it to be the best decision for their lives. I don’t give advice; I simply listen and ask questions, and then listen again."
The boy looked around the room in silence.
Riccardo continued, "Is it okay with you that I’m here today? Jason asked me to come in and give some support. We both want the best for you, but it will be you who decides what the ‘best’ is, and who can help you, or not. Is it okay that I am a coach here for you today?"
The boy shrugged and mumbled, "It’s okay I suppose."
During his attempt to connect with him, Riccardo tried to maintain eye contact, but the boy looked away most of the time and scanned the room instead.
"But is he paying attention?" asked the voice in Riccardo’s head. "Yes, he is listening; he is using his eyes, not his ears."
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