I see three frequent types of questions people tend to have prior to any coaching. Below I seek to address them in detail (a.k.a. Long 😊) format.

Why Coaching?

If someone is considering coaching, but is not quite sure if it is for them, then they want to know why other people come to coaching.

What is Coaching?

Some want to know what IS coaching, either because it is new or is it not clear to them whether if it is the right application for them.

Before Coaching

And finally, when people initially speak with me, some would like some baseline advice in readiness.


There are a multitude of reasons as to why people seek out a coach and indeed coach with me. The following are a few broad areas and themes that people wish to explore:

Life choices: This may be due to changing home, a change in relationship status, a loss, a yearning or sense of malaise, stuckness or confused.

Career changes: Promotions, planned changes, enforced changes, challenges, preparedness, management considerations or simply wanting to find a new way to be where you already are.

Leadership: Growing a business, leading people, relationship management, board and stakeholder management, personal & organisational change, crises and turnarounds, opportunity impacts.

Self-work: Self-confidence, self-awareness, loneliness, fear, anxiety, avoiding joy/fun (or indeed any emotion), impacts/blocks/drivers of past or recent trauma, impacts on self from others, avoidance of pausing and reflecting, feeling “small” or insignificant, holding back.

Coaches: I have coached some other coaches where they seek to stretch into specific area’s where they need help to grow. I do not get easily fazed and so am happy exploring topics or depths where others may avoid. Of course, I have my own blind spots and challenges too and so have sought out other coaches to help me with my growth.

“Other”: Expanding range and audience connection, from an emotional basis (singing, acting, presenting). Wrestling with a problem or opportunity and cannot break the pattern to decision and action.

Naturally, for all of these and more, confidentiality is a must.

2 - WHAT IS Coaching?

My coaching practice is founded on the CTI™ principle that the client is to be held as “naturally creative, resourceful and whole”. This means that the client is not broken, does not need fixing/saving and has the potential answers to their own challenges and aspirations, yet may not be aware of them or embrace them. The coach helps with growing self awareness, brain-storming and suggestions and shines a light in the places avoided or inconsistent, whilst allowing the client to be at choice.

The International Coaching Federation (the principle industry body) defines coaching as “partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximise their personal and professional potential”.

I like this summary but, if I could, I would replace the word maximise with optimise. As, for me, the optimal implies some sustainability and room for occasions when the maximum is not always the best choice. I am not trying to be pedantic, rather I consider this an essential aspect to life.

Also I would highlight that the creative process includes the emotional, physical, intuition/instinctive and maybe even some “otherness”, as this is not just a mental construct. Indeed, I have met and worked with some off-the-scale intelligent people who have found that they cannot “work out” what they need, despite clearly being diligent and having a considerable depth of knowledge and intellect. For sure, the mind/brain is amazing, but it is sometimes just a part of the picture and contributes to our (in)ability to perceive or feel things.

I consider coaching, as its essence, to be the act of supporting, challenging, enquiring, reflecting, catalysing, expanding and normalising life events and choices. Facilitating people to grow their own self-awareness and ability to self-learn, to expand their perspectives and resourcefulness. How this expanded resourcefulness and perspective taking is then applied, is up to the client and depends upon their context, but is made relevant in the coaching sessions, with accountability where appropriate. The key objective is to help people to “self-coach” in the areas that they are stuck, to remove the potential for dependency and encourage the person to be autonomous and have agency.

I think there are two broad types of coaching. One where there is a real focus on the identification of goals, obstacles and assets. The coaching then supports practical accountable steps on how to achieve these goals and the appropriate mind-shifts. The second, where there is a focus on the person as a whole entity, and working with them to identify their own resourcefulness, the blocks they put in their own path and how to remove them, gently taking ownership for their own growth.

It is a process which focusses on the ‘here and now’ and is forward looking. The past does play a part as often our blocks, blind-spots, limits and aspirations can be founded in our history. These make up part of our “inner voices, thoughts, rules, habits or guidances”. Some coaching seeks to silence or change these parts of ourselves. My approach does not, as I fundamentally believe that these come from coachee and so need to be integrated and included. They often have a good intention for the person, just maybe applied poorly at times.

I am aware that some coaches include neuro-linguistic process (nlp) and hypnosis in their practices. I completely understand that these approaches can be very impactful and even quick, but it is not my approach. I believe that setting a pre-programme for oneself or to change the past, reduces the opportunity for awareness, choice and integration and that is important to rely on one’s self to decide, act and create in any moment or situation. This may be a more challenging process, but I believe it is more enriching and expansive. I share this early as it helps the person being coached to reflect on what they want and what they are willing to put in for themselves, as then their results are longer lasting, deep, owned and impactful.

3 - things to consider as a client

Client Responsibilities:

It is your responsibility to contact me and be in a place where you consider it to be private and confidential for you, so you can explore openly.

For the first session, or the trial, try to come with a topic and ideally some idea of what you may like to walk away with. If you have no idea, this is not a problem, we will work with what comes up and is relevant in your life right now or in that moment.

Try to do your best to be honest and open at all times. As the coach, I will support you when you are not (being honest or open to yourself) and will explore how this serves you and inhibits you, without judgement so you can choose rather than react or avoid.

Aim to allow failure and play/experimentation to be included as areas for learning and exploring for your growth.

Any decisions and actions you take are your responsibility. Any accountability requests will be in service of you the client, to observe for yourself, with no judgement from me, the coach.

Coaching is not a substitute for counselling, psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, mental health care or substance abuse treatment and will not be used in place of any form of therapy. It can be used at the same time as these things, in which case the client is requested to inform both parties upon starting either service for transparency and due care and I have had numerous clients whom have benefitted from both modalities at the same time. I have also had clients whom have explored the other modes and hit an impasse, wanting that "something else" and here I have been able to help.